The North Okanagan’s winter landscape is front and centre during the latest movie production.
Filming began on Numb Monday, and the cast and crew will be in Vernon, Lumby and Enderby for three weeks.
“We need snow and cold and one of the locations is a frozen lake,” said producer Dylan Jenkinson.
“The Okanagan is actually playing the Okanagan in this film.”
Numb is about a couple in financial distress that discover a map that promises to lead to stolen gold.
It stars Jamie Bamber, from Battlestar Gallactica and Law & Order U.K.
First-time feature director Jason Goode is known for shorts Late, The Hitchhiker, Pop Switch and The Planting.
“The Hitchhiker screened at the Okanagan Film Festival, and that was a really big deal to me. They screened my 35-millimetre print right before Everything’s Gone Green and I met that film’s director Paul Fox, who is still a friend and mentor,” said Goode.
“So that now defunct festival helped me make some important connections. Its former director swung by the set Monday and said hi.”
Numb is a Canadian feature film.
“It’s modestly budgeted so there’s not a huge crew,” said Jenkinson, a Canadian Film Centre alumnus.
“Several departments are mostly crewed by people from the Okanagan. The costume department is headed by someone who is local.”
And beyond the winter weather, the local talent is why the North Okanagan was chosen for filming.
“There is an emerging film industry here,” said Jenkinson.
“A large part of why we came to the Okanagan was its film commissioner Jon Summerland. Jon was hugely helpful and was so on-the-ball when helping us research and find the right place to shoot. I think he was actually very influential for us coming to the region.”
Cinema Management Group is representing Numb and will unveil footage and selected scenes at the Cannes Film Market in May. It should make the rounds at film festivals this fall and be in theatres next winter.
“It’s a great production to have because they hired quite a few local people. Money is being spent in local hotels and restaurants,” said Summerland, with the Okanagan Film Commission.
“The more publicity, the more people in the industry know about us. The more films we bring in, the more eyes are on us.”