Alberta has become a bit of a movie hotspot and we’re living for it! Hollywood needs snow, small towns and rolling hills for cheap, and we’ve got all of the above. After receiving confirmation that new HBO series The Last of Us would be filming in Calgary, we figured we’d break down some other iconic films and TV shows where you can catch a glimpse of the Prairies. Here are 13 movies and TV shows that you may not know were shot in Alberta.
The man, the myth, the legend, Clint Eastwood shot his 1992 movie Unforgiven here in Alberta. Set in the Old West, Unforgiven follows William Munny, a thief and murderer as he attempts to straighten out his life for his two kids. That is, until he’s brought an “offer he can’t refuse.”
COOL RUNNINGS (1993)
After being disqualified from the Olympics, a Jamaican sprinter enlists the help of a has-been coach to start a bobsled team (of all things?). Cool Runnings was shot shortly after YYC held the 1988 Olympics so it only made sense to film it in Calgary.
SHANGHAI NOON (2000)
This bizarre western stars Jackie Chan and Owen Wilson as an unlikely crime-fighting duo who are asked to take down a traitor and his corrupt boss. Who would’ve guessed that this movie was shot in Alberta?
Where: Drumheller, AB and Cochrane, AB
BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN (2005)
Ahhh, if you know you know. Brokeback Mountain ruffled some feathers, changed some lives, made us fall more love with Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal than we already were. Also, it won an Oscar after its release.
Where: See all Alberta locations here
THE ASSASSINATION OF JESSE JAMES (2005)
The Assassination of Jesse James stars Brad Pitt as Robert Ford, a western gangster who joins Jesse James in a life of crime only to murder him. Gang life is no life, kids.
Where: Calgary, Edmonton, and Canmore, AB
Was it all a dream? We’re pretty sure everyone has seen this movie at least a dozen times because no one knew what the hell it was about after watching it once, so we don’t feel the need to explain it. The cast is bomb, the concept is wild, it was filmed here, and that’s all that matters.
Where: Kananaskis, AB
GAME OF THRONES (2011 – 2019)
Alberta is the proud province mom of Game of Thrones‘ iconic Direwolves. That’s it. That’s our claim to fame. We could end the list here and we’d still be on our high horse about it because with or without the mess that was the last season, GOT will go down as one of the best shows ever made.
Where: Banff, AB
No, Interstellar wasn’t shot in outer space. But, it was able to use some prairie towns in Alberta as pretend extra-terrestrial planets. It also needed to showcase some farming communities, so that’s a no-brainer here! There are actually 5 different towns (or township areas) that Interstellar used, so see how many of ’em you can spot next time you watch!
Where: See all locations here
THE REVENANT (2015)
Leo’s first Oscar! All it took was for him to climb into the body of a dead bear in the middle of Alberta’s freezing winter. Being an actor is so glamourous.
Where: Kananaskis and Drumheller, AB
A TEACHER (2020-PRESENT)
A Teacher is currently being shot for FX right here in Calgary. Based on a 2013 film of the same name, it revolves around Mara’s character falling for a high-schooler. Scandalous.
JUMANJI: THE NEXT LEVEL (2019)
The Rock, Nick Jonas, Kevin Hart, and Jack Black? This cast was stacked, and the movie wasn’t so bad either. The city nearly erupted when they heard these guys were in Calgary to film, and rightfully so. People were bumping into these guys at Starbucks!
Where: Banff and Calgary, AB
GHOSTBUSTERS: AFTERLIFE (2020)
Finn Wolfhard from Stranger Things, McKenna Grace from Captain Marvel, The Leftovers’ Carrie Coon and ageless good guy and ultimate man crush Paul Rudd were in Calgary last year to film the anticipated-ish sequel to the original Ghostbusters, and people went nuts. Although it hasn’t hit theatres quite yet, we’re sure it’ll be a pretty entertaining flick.
Where: Fort MacLeod, AB
So, folks, did any of these surprise you? We think we’ll give Interstellar another go this weekend, heck maybe we’ll re-watch everything on the list! Alberta movie marathon at our place!