Jessica, Preston | January 2, 2017
Hollywood productions always seem to attract big crowds in Cambridge. It’s exciting to come across a film set in your own backyard. You can get great photos, meet famous actors, and befriend like-minded fans. Even if you’re not a movie buff, it’s worth standing around a film set just to marvel at the scale of a big-budget production or to see your hometown transformed. The tricky part can be locating the film set in the first place. Read on for a handy guide to making it to Hollywood without leaving home.
In the past decade, Cambridge has hosted numerous film productions. In 2016 alone, Cambridge was a small town infected with a deadly virus (Between), late-19th century Toronto (Murdoch Mysteries), a Southern U.S. town hoping for snow (Terrific Trucks Save Christmas), and dystopian Massachusetts (Hulu’s upcoming adaptation of The Handmaid’s Tale). Check out our Filmed in Cambridge list for even more titles.
With so many productions ongoing, it’s not hard to locate a film crew in this town. Watch for details about upcoming productions in newspapers and on social media. Film crews will often provide businesses with advance notice if filming will occur nearby, so keep an eye out for information posted at local shops. Lastly, pay attention: if you come across a group of trailers, cranes, and pylons, look for signage pointing cast and crew to filming locations.
If you’re really keen to find a production filming on location, the Ontario Media Development Corporation (OMDC) provides a list of all TV shows and movies in development in Ontario. When they’re not filming in Cambridge, they’ll probably still be nearby – most Ontario productions are filmed in Toronto or Hamilton. If you’re willing to go even further afield, OnLocationVacations.com provides daily updates about filming locations in major cities throughout Canada and the United States.
Perhaps you’d rather be in the movies than stand on the sidelines. ACTRA (the Canadian actors’ union) offers an overview of what it takes to make it behind the scenes as an extra. If you own property, you can also list your house with the OMDC as a potential filming location and let Hollywood come to you.
Once you’ve made it to your film set, BE COOL. Remember: the cast and crew are working, so be respectful, be quiet, and generally try to be as unobtrusive as possible. Stand where you’re told to stand and keep selfies to a minimum. Now that you’ve made it to Hollywood, you don’t want to get kicked off the set!