Nfld. & Labrador

Jason Momoa's latest Newfoundland-shot film is a violent action thriller

Another film project shot in Newfoundland featuring movie star Jason Momoa hits select U.S. theatres this week.

Braven shows local haunts in new light, like a violent scene shot in Leo's fish and chip shop

Action film Braven starring Jason Momoa, which was filmed in Newfoundland, opens in select theatres this weekend. (

Another film project shot in Newfoundland featuring movie star Jason Momoa hits select theatres in the U.S. this week, giving audiences there a chance to see the island's unique scenery.

When I saw photos it was an easy decision and a no-brainer.- Lin Oeding

Braven is an action thriller about a son and father who have to protect their family at a wilderness cabin from a group of drug runners.

"It's a cool film set in beautiful Newfoundland. The film actually takes place somewhere on the Canadian border but Newfoundland is just a stunning backdrop," director Lin Oeding told CBC's Here & Now.

The thriller is also produced by Momoa, along with his partner Brian Mendoza, through their Pride of Gypsies banner.

Director Lin Oeding

Texan-turned-Californian director Oeding got his start in the industry on Walker, Texas Ranger, and worked on the movies The Equalizer and Straight Outta Compton, and came to scout Newfoundland as a location in November 2015.

"When I saw photos it was an easy decision and a no-brainer, as Newfoundland is a gorgeous place," said Oeding.

Momoa approached Oeding about directing Braven and both agreed Newfoundland would make the most sense to film given the scenery — and because Momoa was already in the province filming the Discovery Canada series Frontier.

Head-bashing at Leo's fish and chips

The trailer for Braven gives a sneak peek at some scenes that should look familiar to any Newfoundlander, such as the winter backcountry and one clip that shows a man's head being violently slammed into a table at St. John's fish and chips spot Leo's Restaurant.

Lin Oeding is a TV and film director who has worked on projects such as Walker, Texas Ranger, Straight Outta Compton and The Equalizer. (CBC)

Oeding said to make Braven a reality, some of the crew were drawn from Newfoundland's burgeoning film industry, such as locals who had worked on projects like CBC's Republic of Doyle.

Newfoundland a 'stunning background'

The Hollywood director said coming from Los Angeles to Canada's most eastern province during winter was certainly a shock, and he quickly had to get geared up with a Canada Goose jacket and snow pants.

But Oeding sees a lot of potential in Newfoundland for future Hollywood films given what's already been filmed on the island over the last several years.

"There are places like Newfoundland or other parts of the world that people don't know of yet. But I'm sure when this movie comes out a lot of people will see this stunning background and go on the internet and see where it's shot," he said.

Jason Momoa is the star and one of the producers of Braven. (FilmIsNow)

Besides the Newfoundland scenery as the backdrop, Oeding said anyone who likes Momoa's work or just a good action film in general should enjoy the 94-minute ride that Braven provides.

"It's going to be a fun film and audiences are going to see Jason kicking butt," he said.

"I think everyone can relate to a father who, at the end of the day, just wants to protect his family when it's in danger."

With files from Here and Now