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Production company based in UK visits Salmon Arm for ‘documentary style’ filming

Shuswap Film Commission manager would like area to grow its reputation as film-friendly
One of the locations Wall to Wall Productions based in the UK had on its list for shooting in Salmon Arm in June 2022 was the wharf at Marine Peace Park. (File photo)

A film production company based in the UK found its way to Salmon Arm recently to film.

Morgen Matheson, manager of the Shuswap Tourism & Shuswap Film Commission, wrote to city council June 8 to request permission for the company to film in the city the week of June 13.

She described Wall to Wall Productions as a highly recognized company affiliated with Warner Brothers International Production Company.

Matheson said they would be filming in a documentary style. Regarding content, she could reveal only that she thought it is mostly about families.

She said the filming would not require street closures.

Their ‘shot list’ included three categories.

‘Driving shots’ listed 11th Avenue NE, 10th Street NE, 6th Avenue NE, Lakeshore Road and 20th Avenue NE.

‘Grand Visuals’ included the Salmon Arm Wharf, the wharf and Marine Peace Park, Hudson Avenue NE , Alexander Street NE and 6th Street NE around McGuire Lake Park.

The ‘Reunion Grand Visuals and shots of hotel’ listed Salmon Arm Wharf, the wharf and Marine Peace Park, and Harbourfront Drive NE.

“This would be a great opportunity for Salmon Arm and the Shuswap to start to become recognized as a potential film location to other productions locally and around the world,” Matheson wrote.

The majority of council approved the request.

Read more: Nearly 20 films to be shot in Okanagan through 2021

Read more: CSRD’s Morgen Matheson aims to get movie productions rolling in the Shuswap

In discussions, Coun. Louise Wallace Richmond said it’s not something the city has seen much of before, but it is exciting.

She asked about protocols.

“The film industry is low impact and growing, especially in this region. If we can find processes and procedures that facilitate such projects I think it would be important to do that and, as a first step, I would say we authorize this filming.”

Coun. Sylvia Lindgren expressed concerns about content. She referred to a commercial that featured Lytton in an unfavourable way, with the residents there unhappy about it. She wondered whether, as an example, a film could be about gun violence or could be about the area being a great place to live.

She was alone in voting against approval.

In a follow-up interview to her letter to council, Matheson said she thinks the company wrapped up its filming on the 15th.

She said they came in quickly but she would be following up with them to see how it went.

“A lot of it is word of mouth,” she said. “If we can start to garner a reputation as a film-friendly location, it starts the ball rolling for other companies to come.

“We’re hoping to let the film industry know we’re open for business.”
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Martha Wickett

About the Author: Martha Wickett

came to Salmon Arm in May of 2004 to work at the Observer. I was looking for a change from the hustle and bustle of the Lower Mainland, where I had spent more than a decade working in community newspapers.
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