Finances hold back 2 high-profile Nunavut film shoots
Two feature movies to be shot in Nunavut this year, including the directorial debut by British actor Ralph Fiennes, are on hold in part because they still need funding.
Filming of Fiennes' Snow Countryhas not started due to a combination of logistical and financial reasons, casting director Deirdre Bowen told CBC News.
"It had to do with Ralph's availability, plus the final piece of financing coming through, and the weather," Bowen said.
One year ago this month, Fiennes was in Nunavut to scout for locations and find a lead actress for Snow Country, a love story involving a young Inuk woman returning to the Arctic from a Winnipeg convent in the 1950s.
Bowen said Fiennes did met with several actresses following a territory-wide casting call.
Another filmmaker, Andy Young, also visited Nunavut last spring in search of a lead actress for Julie of the Wolves, his movie adaptation of the 1972 children's novel by Jean Craighead George.
At the time, Young was adamant about finding a young Inuk or Inupiat woman to portray Julie, the lead character. But now, Young said he's in discussions with a non-Inuk to play the role.
"We didn't find the person that we felt was going to breathe the right kind of feeling into the story," Young said.
"We also had resistance from would-be investors to using a first-time actress on a film that completely had to be carried by that person."
Young said he still plans to shoot some of his movie's scenes in Nunavut. But with no roads joining the territory to southern Canada, he said he will likely shoot most of Julie of the Wolves in Alaska.
He added he was not enticed by Nunavut's limited financial incentives for filmmakers from outside the territory.