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Canadian talent to reap benefits of Netflix HQ coming to Toronto

Netflix’s announcement that Toronto will be the home for its Canadian corporate headquarters is being hailed as great news for the city, the film and television industry and for creative professionals across the country including those from the Toronto Film School community.

 

With a production hub already established in the city in 2019 and many of Netflix’s popular programs shot and produced here, this recent move represents an added opportunity for the streaming giant to tap even further into the creative talent in Toronto and Canada.

 

“Toronto is a film friendly city which welcomes and celebrates the screen industry, the quality and diversity of our talent pool is second to none and we have a robust and ever-expanding production and post-production industry,” said Toronto Mayor John Tory in a press release.

 

According to the city’s Economic and Community Development Committee, Toronto’s film and TV sector employed more than 30,000 people and contributed $2.2 billion to Toronto’s pre-pandemic economy in 2019.

 

Many Netflix programs including the Queen’s Gambit, Umbrella Academy and Locke & Key, were shot in Toronto and this latest move represents a continued commitment to fostering Canadian talent for future creative projects.

 

Exciting Times Ahead

 

“Any time an organization as high-profile as Netflix chooses Toronto as its home, it reinforces that Toronto is a global production hub and they value the creative voices and the creative points of view that Torontonians and Canadians have,” says Toronto Film School’s Emmy-winning Executive Producer in ResidenceAndrew Barnsley.

 

 

“It is a powerful message from a global, cultural powerhouse saying that not only do we value Toronto’s labour, infrastructure and production resources, we value the voices.”

 

Barnsley, who also serves as CEO of Project 10 Productions and was the executive producer of CBC’s Schitt’s Creek, added for established and emerging talent in the creative industries, all such growth is great news and also bodes well for Toronto Film School students entering these fields.

 

“It’s nothing but good for the industry in Toronto, all the stakeholders and the production ecosystem including Toronto Film School and the opportunities they present to our students and alumni will be remarkable. It’s really exciting to see what unfolds as the new office comes online.”

 

Great Opportunity For Canadian Talent

 

2013 Toronto Film School alumnus, Mousa Ghodratifard, who has worked on several Netflix productions including assistant director of Umbrella Academy for season 1 and parts of season 2, is encouraged by this news.

 

Mousa Ghodratifard

 

“They are one of the biggest online streamers and product makers in the film and television industry,” he says. “Netflix will allow Canadian creators to work on their own projects. This is the best news the Canadian film industry can get.”

 

Ghodratifard is one of many Toronto Film School graduates who have recently worked on Netflix productions. Alumnus Caleigh Bacchus has been hired by Hungry Eyes Media to work in the writing room for a new series #Relationshipgoals. It was picked up by the 2020 CFC/Netflix Project Development Accelerator.

 

Other notables:

 

Locke & Key

Alexander Melvin was a Motion Graphic Designer on Season 2.

October Faction 

Gabriel Darku played Geoff Allen, one of the leads.

Faculty member Andrew Moodie had a part in two episodes.

Designated Survivor 

Elene Mekete was a Producer’s Assistant on Season 3.

Christiaan J. Cloete was a Remote Head Technician.

Faculty member John Tench had a role in one episode of Season 2.

Christiaan J. Cloete worked on Season 1 as a Stabilized Head Technician and Technocrane Technician.

Titans (Season 2)

Christiaan J. Cloete was a Remote Head Technician.

Aiden J. Carter was a Union Camera Trainee.

Romanesh Reynoso was a Lighting Technician.

Mousa Ghodratifard was a Set Production Assistant.

Christmas Chronicles 

Mousa Ghodratifard was an Assistant Director.

Shadowhunters 

Robyn Alomar had a role in one episode of Season 3.

Shakithyan Niranjan was a Union Camera Trainee on Season 1.

The Umbrella Academy 

Faculty member Patrice Goodman played the role of Dot in five episodes of Season 1.

Black Mirror 

Elene Mekete was an Accountant Assistant on episode Arkangel (Season 4).

Self Made – Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker (2020)  

Colin Edwards played a small part in the movie.

Ginny and Georgia

Jacintha Braithwaite (Acting ’19) had a small role in one episode.