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As recent Oscar wins for such indies as Spotlight and Room demonstrate, Ontario easily can double for a variety of places, from Boston to Ohio. These days, Ontario is crawling with local location scouts looking for new ways to transform the province’s neighborhoods, cities and natural settings into convincing backdrops for everything from comic book tentpoles to low-budget indies.
It’s hard work: Suicide Squad locations manager Marty Dejczak had two colleagues go door-to-door for two months on Toronto’s Yonge Street to tell every store owner and everyone living nearby what to expect when the cameras rolled on Batman clinging to The Joker’s speeding car outside their window. Or Regression locations manager Drazen Baric had a Toronto church lined up for the Emma Watson starrer, only to see it pull out just as production was set to start; he had to scramble to find another location.
THR talked to Ontario scouts and directors of photography about how they transform their province into Anywhere, USA.
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