Why Georgia Doubled Up As Canada In Josh Duhamel’s Robber Drama ‘Bandit’ – News Kidda

Toronto and Vancouver routinely double as New York City, Chicago, and other US cities in Hollywood movies and TV shows that yield generous tax credits and currency savings when shot in Canada.

But in what Canadian director Allan Ungar says is a first, he had to recreate 1980s Ottawa, Vancouver, Toronto, Winnipeg, and Edmonton in modern-day Georgia to shoot his bank robbery drama. Banditstarring Josh Duhamel, Elisha Cuthbert, Mel Gibson and Nestor Carbonell.

“In certain parts of the US people are very patriotic. And so it was really bizarre for some of the locals to walk down Main Street and see Canadian flags everywhere,” Ungar said. News Kidda forward Bandit getting a theatrical release on about 100 North American screens starting this Friday.

Ungar was originally going to film in Canada for his true film about American Gilbert Galvan Jr., played by Duhamel, who escaped from a Michigan prison and crossed the border in 1985 to take on a new identity and make a total of 59 Canadians. banks and jewelers as part of a crime wave across the country.

Because Galvan Jr. often robbed a bank at the far end of Canada and quickly boarded a plane to be home the same evening, he became known as the ‘The Flying Bandit’.

“This man literally amassed 160,000 Aeroplan miles and used those points to fly himself first class across Canada and rob banks in virtually every province. It’s just a wild story, “the Bandit director explains.

However, it was the COVID-19 pandemic, requiring Hollywood actors to quarantine for 14 days before stepping onto a Canadian film set, that lured American talent across the border to work on Bandit impractical.

“It’s very difficult to convince actors to come to Canada at a time when they would spend more time quarantined in a hotel room than actually working on set,” Ungar recalled. So the producers on Bandit, Goldrush Entertainment, moved production to Georgia, where the local movie tax credit itself was a draw, along with welcoming the locals.

Except for wary bank employees, it turns out. “There’s nothing more annoying than walking into a bank on a location scout and having the managers listen to you about all the ways you could rob that bank,” Ungar says.

To enable Duhamel to play John Dillinger of Canada, the film’s producers relied on banks in Peach State that were closed, or built bank counters and safety deposit boxes in a movie studio. And for exteriors, Ungar embraced sleek camera footage and computer-generated removal of modern buildings to give a Canadian look to rural Georgia.

“In the end it came down to knowing exactly what we needed in each scene and saying, ‘If this becomes a street corner, we’re going to need the Canadian mailbox, some Canadian flags, and some really polite extras that say a lot of sorry,’ The director jokes about the American stereotype that Canadians are mainly apologetic to avoid conflict.

That and classic Southern hospitality allowed Georgia to double as Canadian city centers in Bandit. “It’s Canada with a southern accent,” Ungar adds.

Bandit also gets a concurrent on-demand release on Friday through Quiver Distribution.

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