2021 was a banner year for film production in Red Deer. No fewer than three of the city’s filmmakers were awarded $20,000 each in grants, and received mentorship, career training and distribution from Telus’s Storyhive program, which has been supporting emerging filmmakers in Alberta and British Columbia for almost a decade.
Red Deer at a Glance
- Population 106,732
- Median Family Income $99,110
- Unemployment Rate 10.2%
- Residential Vacancy Rate 9%
- Life Stress 20.2%
- Sense of Belonging 67.8%
Source: Government of Alberta
With a flagship production program at Red Deer Polytechnic (RDP), a full-service recording and film production studio downtown and a high calibre film festival displaying screen talent from at home and abroad, the local film industry is at the heart of the city.
You’ll probably recognize the faces of RDP graduates on popular television series and movies, from Castle and Friday Night Lights, to The Short Cut with Adam Sandler. Alumni have also worked in the technical departments on film franchises as renowned as the Superman, Bourne and the Mission: Impossible series.
These industry professionals don’t need to go too far to work on their film and television projects either. Established through a partnership between local, award-winning production companies, Unveil Studios and Melodious Design Recording, The Space is an integrated recording and film production studio, and a local meeting place for creators.
When it comes to sharing the fruits of these labours, there’s no better forum than the Central Alberta Film Festival (CAFF). CAFF showcases films from around the world, but the not-for-profit society takes as its special mission the promotion of Canadian filmmaking in particular, and the development of “a whole new generation of cineastes for our local and national cinema.” CAFF has a thriving local film production industry and culture to draw from.