$28M Calgary Film Centre celebrates grand opening

Calgary's brand new $28-million film production facility celebrated its grand opening Thursday, and business over the next five years is expected to boom.

Facility includes 50,000 square feet with 3 purpose-built sound stages

Calgary Film Centre's grand opening

5 years ago
Calgary's new $28-million film production facility is now officially open for business. 0:41

Calgary's brand new $28-million film production facility celebrated its grand opening Thursday.

The Calgary Film Centre has 50,000 square feet with three purpose-built sound stages as well as 35,000 square feet of multi-purpose workshop and warehouse spaces.

It's located at 5750 76th Ave. S.E., east of the Foothills Industrial Park.

"We are just starting. Now, it's a matter of filling the facilities, growing this industry," said Luke Azevedo, commissioner of film, television and creative industries with Calgary Economic Development.

He added the facility "allows us to become that much more legitimate and that much more attractive for industry to come here." 

Azevedo is predicting the film industry in Calgary will grow "significantly" within the next five years.

The Calgary Film Centre has 50,000 square feet with three purpose-built sound stages. (CBC)

"This is about the city and this is about the industry," he said. 

"Culture is one of the pillars that we need to ensure that this city and this province develops in a way that's meaningful and continues to grow."

The new centre features 12-inch-thick walls on the outside, insulated interiors, roof structures that will hold thousands of pounds of capacity, and electrical wiring necessary for large production series or feature films.

A Western-style set inside the new film studio (Scott Dippel/CBC)

The City of Calgary contributed $10 million toward the new facility, $5 million came from the Government of Alberta and William F. White International Inc. — the anchor tenant — put up $1 million.

"Southern Alberta is well known with film producers for its stunning visual beauty but the opening of the Calgary Film Centre gives us another important 'location' for the industry to extend filming year round," Mayor Nenshi said in a release.

Nenshi says this centre is an important element to diversifying the economy.

William F. White International, Canada's largest provider of movie production equipment, is the facility's anchor tenant. (Calgary Film Centre/Facebook)