Guide seeks to promote Norfolk as film region

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A Norfolk woman is working to promote the county as an ideal location for the film industry.

Freelance filmmaker Tanya van Rooy of Simcoe plans to introduce a film producers’ resource guide in Norfolk County. She has received a grant of $5,000 from Norfolk Venture to help in her quest to develop the county into a film region.

Van Rooy is looking for retired and semi-retired residents to volunteer for the Film Directory Board of Norfolk to help with the project. However, residents of any age can help.

“We just want to have fun with it,” said van Rooy. “We also want people in this area to hopefully want to become part of this industry.”

The guide will help visiting production companies acquire the resources they need in Norfolk. Resources will include film production categories, such as equipment and raw stock, location services, regional film contacts, studio warehouse and sets and other film-related services.

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A call will be put out to encourage county residents to participate in searching for locations to be used in the project.

“We’re going to ask the community to seek out 10 to 14 strongest of our most unique locations,” said van Rooy. “Then the Ontario Film commission will send someone down to professionally photograph it.”

More information is available on the Film Norfolk Facebook page.

Adding to her schedule, van Rooy is wrapping a four-part series called Feeding Canada, which tells the story of migrant farm workers. The series was shot on various farms throughout the county and currently sits with a no release date.

“It was obviously pretty intense with COVID and outbreaks happening on the farms,” she said. “However, it ended up being a really compelling story, introducing the workers and telling their story; what it’s like to be a migrant worker.”

Van Rooy also operates her own film production company called Howl at the Moon and an event-planning business called Culture Rodeo that soon will be going through an expansion.

“It’s going to be really fun,” said van Rooy. “I can’t say much more than that.”

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