TLG talks to Canadian Location Manager Scott Alexander
Scott was born in Red Deer in Alberta, Canada. He moved to Burlington, Ontario, when he was 11, and studied business at university. In 1998 he applied for a location PA position on the TV series Due South and has worked in the location department since.
Scott currently resides in Stoney Creek with his wife Nicci.
What do you like most about being a Location Manager?
I love the independence you have in the job. You are not saddled with being stuck in a cubicle. You get to go out and explore amazing and unique places that people don't normally get to see or get access to.
What has been your luckiest career break so far and why?
My luckiest career break was when I was hired on to my first feature film Pushing Tin as the locations PA. I got the job after the first choice was three hours late to work on the first day in the studio. The job was with one of the top Location Managers in the province and I’ve been working as a part of her team ever since.
My luckiest career break was when I was hired on to my first feature film Pushing Tin as the locations PA. I got the job after the first choice was three hours late to work on the first day in the studio.
What type of production do you prefer working on and why?
I really like to work on the big feature films - the more action the better. I really like the challenge of making some of the more unusual requests happen.
Where is your favourite location?
My favourite location would have to be The Royal York Hotel in Toronto.
What has been the best cheat location you have worked on?
We once shot a Polish hall in downtown Toronto that we made look like the exterior and interior of a church set in World War II Poland.
What directors have you most enjoyed working with and why?
I really enjoyed working with [Flightplan and The Time Traveller’s Wife Director] Robert Schwentke. He was a lot of fun and very energetic about what he wanted.
What has been your most challenging location assignment to date?
The most challenging location to date would have been arranging to close down Barton St in Hamilton (a major road) for eight consecutive days and re-routing traffic and buses while we turned a one-block active storefront area into a post-apocalyptic alien attack zone for the upcoming [Steven Spielberg-produced] TV series Falling Skies.
What is the most film-friendly location you have shot at that actively wants to encourage productions their way?
The Royal York Hotel is Toronto is one of the most film-friendly upper class hotels in Ontario. Also, it isn't one specific location but the City of Hamilton is really amazing and they are so film-friendly there. They will make every attempt possible to always help you out and to help you achieve that one crazy scenario that you don't think any city would ever allow you to do.
What are you working on now?
I’m currently working on the remake of Total Recall for Sony/Columbia.
What tips would you give to anyone considering filming for the first time in Hamilton?
Get in touch with the film office right away and detail your project to them because even if you think it might be impossible to do in the downtown core of a city they will always try to find a way to make it happen.
Your favourite location caterer?
I wish I had time to try the lunch but that hour is a very busy time for the location department, with fire watch (the nick-name given to watching the set), directing the crew to the lunch room, helping to set up the caterer and even making sure the location contact isn't too shell-shocked by the whole experience!
If you hadn’t become a location manager what would you have done instead?
I would have probably continued my education and gone to law school to become a lawyer or a sports agent.
Global Filming Incentive - Canada (see more…)
- Newfoundland & Labrador: Tax Credit
- NWT Travel Rebate
- NWT Expenditure Rebate
- Cost-Of-Production Tax Credit
- Cost-Of-Salaries Tax Credit
- Canada: Film or Video Production Tax Credit (CPTC)
- Canada: The Film or Video Production Services Tax Credit (PSTC)
- The Manitoba Film and Video Production Tax Credit: Frequent Filming Bonus
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