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Susan Gittins

Longtime mainstream media (MSM) journalist and author Susan Gittins began writing about and photographing Vancouver’s many film and TV location shoots in the summer of 2010 after the Winter Olympics put the city and its beauty on the world stage. Movies and TV series often showcase the Vancouver area in similar fashion. Vancouver is Awesome commissioned her YVRShoots series in the fall of 2010 and it ran regularly for three years. She launched her own daily YVRShoots blog in the spring of 2012.

SHOOT: FRINGE’s Mysterious Child Observer

Last night’s Through the Looking Glass and What Walter Found There introduced Rowan Longworth’s mysterious child Observer whom Walter had kept hidden for twenty years in a pocket reality inside an old apartment building played by the West End’s Sherburn building. But when the Fringe team finally makes their way to apartment 413 in this Alice-in-Wonderland-like world, the mysterious child Observer is gone.

Will they find him? Of course they will. And so my photos of the child Observer filming episode ten this week are no longer such a big spoiler. The bald boy character we first met in season one (played by a different young actor) was on set for Monday’s epic downtown shoot with Anna Torv’s Olivia, Joshua Jackson’s Peter, John Noble’s Walter and Blair Brown’s Nina Sharp in her wheelchair at one of the five different locations. And also on set a few days later when Fringe filmed in an alley west of the Terminal City Ironworks compound in east Vancouver with the same cast. And then on Thursday for episode eleven at the Waterfront station stop for the West Coast Express made to look like a train station stop in 2036 with Loyalist soldiers patrolling the platform.

Read More »SHOOT: FRINGE’s Mysterious Child Observer

YVRShoots Series – Sitcom PACKAGE DEAL Live in Burnaby

Published November 9, 2012 on Vancouver is Awesome

Update: While taped in Burnaby, Package Deal is set in Toronto.

Partway through the live taping of sitcom Package Deal’s pilot episode last night I had to zone out for a bit, exhausted from laughing non-stop for hours. Of course the sitcom is laugh-out-loud funny, although the details are embargoed until after the premiere airs early next year on Citytv. I can tell you that the laughs for the acerbic Harland Williams’s flubbing of his lines were just as big as when he did it right. “That’s not the line,” Williams told the audience. “Stop laughing, I’m sensitive.”  Williams, more than anyone else, cracked up his fellow cast members on set. Meanwhile, wrangler/perfomer Dave Dimapalis kept us entertained  in the audience between takes by coaxing volunteers to play progressively lewder games. Bachelorette #1 in the Bachelor game quipped “100% down” when asked how she would label herself in a store. Is it any surprise the blindfolded bachelor picked her from three possible candidates? I was rooting for Bachelorette #2 , by the way, who described herself as “a cub not yet a cougar.”  And halfway through the taping,: pages came round with pizza slices from the Flying Wedge to keep our energy up.

Read More »YVRShoots Series – Sitcom PACKAGE DEAL Live in Burnaby

SHOOT: ONCE UPON A TIME’s Captain Hook With a Spyglass in Steveston for 2×11 – Updated

Watch your back Rumplestiltskin. Colin O’Donoghue’s charming and dangerously seductive Captain Hook is looking for a portal to take him to Storybrooke so that he can exact his revenge on the Dark One, who cut off his hand and crushed the heart of his beloved. And Hook will align himself with anyone who can get him there. Emma leaving Hook shackled in the Giant’s treasure house last Sunday night will prove but a temporary setback for Fairytale Land’s most eligible bachelor.

So the question is when — not if —  Hook will show up in Storybrooke. Still, it was an unexpected treat to see O’Donoghue filming scenes on a rooftop in Steveston yesterday and to have crew allow a handful of spectators who’d braved the rain to photograph him when the cameras weren’t rolling. Such an unusual location for Once Upon a Time. Is this rooftop in Storybrooke or Fairytale Land? If Storybrooke, Hook might consider a change of wardrobe because he’s not going to blend in dressed in black leather.

Read More »SHOOT: ONCE UPON A TIME’s Captain Hook With a Spyglass in Steveston for 2×11 – Updated

SHOOT: FRINGE’s Epic Downtown Shoot with Five Exterior Locations in One Day for 5×10 – Updated

What a day. Fringe filmed sequences with Anna Torv’s Olivia Dunham, Joshua Jackson’s Peter Bishop , John Noble’s Walter Bishop, Blair Brown’s Nina Sharp and a mysterious boy yesterday in five different downtown Vancouver locations for the tenth episode of the final season. Crew dressed each location as the future Observer-occupied world of 2036 using a prop Ministry of Science van, a prop check point and traffic jam, a prop food cart, Resistance posters and dozens of background performers dressed as Observers, Loyalist soliders and citizens in 1940s clothing.

Read More »SHOOT: FRINGE’s Epic Downtown Shoot with Five Exterior Locations in One Day for 5×10 – Updated

PHOTO RECAP: Vancouver as Vancouver in ONCE UPON A TIME 2×06

A few thoughts on Tallahassee, my favourite Once Upon a Time episode of season two so far. I predicted a long con of Jennifer Morrison’s young Emma Swan by Michael Raymond-James’s fellow thief Neal Cassady but did not anticipate he would do it out of love for her after Eion Bailey’s August showed him Emma’s destiny to break the curse in Storybrooke.

I’d seen the thieving pair on set in the Downtown Eastside near the Main Street overpass filming the scene of them being pulled over by the Portland police after Emma learns she “stole a stolen car.”

Once Upon a Time filmed later scenes of the new “Bonnie & Clyde” examining their stolen loot from a corner store  in a motel room at the City Centre Motor Hotel on Main Street and then planning to make a real home together in Tallahassee.

Read More »PHOTO RECAP: Vancouver as Vancouver in ONCE UPON A TIME 2×06

WEEK: October 29 – November 4, 2012