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The Location Scout; Movies @ Humber
Welcome to the Movie pillar of Chime Digital! While most know the grounds to be an educational institution, the layout of the buildings and land have been host to a number of well-known movies. Prior to Humber College moving into the Lakeshore area in the late 1980s and early 1990s, the isolated psychiatric hospital acted as a perfect spot for crews to bring in equipment in order to film all types of TV shows and movies.
The Lakeshore grounds became a haven, a filmmaker’s playground, a blank canvas where stories were brought to life. The location served its purpose well, with many popular features becoming intertwined with the fabric of what is now Humber Lakeshore campus. Even after Humber moved in and the buildings were repurposed to serve as an educational institution, the crews never stopped visiting! The Toronto film industry continues to flourish and many productions still come to Humber year after year to film.
Ever wondered what it was like to film at Humber before it was a college? Click the button below to read an interview with Andrew Poulos, a former art director and location scout who worked on several film projects on the Lakeshore Grounds.
Did You Know?
DID YOU KNOW?
The campus in the Police Academy movie series was the empty buildings of the Lakeshore Psychiatric Hospital before Humber College moved in? Above is an image of the troupes rolling into the dorms, with G Building (the old Administration Building of the Hospital) very clearly shown in the background.
This building was used as the Administrative Building for the movie and even retains some architectural features that were created specifically for the movie with the most memorable being the reconstructed facade where a face was sculpted into the wall to emulate the features of George Gaynes who played the character of Commandant Lassard.
DID YOU KNOW?
That the Canadian cult classic Strange Brew was filmed in Toronto? Not only that, but one of the last scenes of the film takes place on the Lakeshore Grounds. Check out the back left where we can see Humber’s G and F buildings!
The main characters, Bob and Doug McKenzie, wind up here at what is today Humber’s Lakeshore campus, but their adventure takes them through the entire city of Toronto, including a number of recognizable spots in Etobicoke.
To find a more detailed guide map of where these famous hosers roamed, check out the article “Where the Cult Classic Strange Brew was Filmed in Toronto” from The Torontoist.
DID YOU KNOW?
That parts of Suicide Squad were filmed in the tunnels of Humber College? The comic book hit movie became notorious for clogging up the main channels of Toronto’s downtown core.
But what many people don’t know is that it also filmed in a plethora of other areas throughout the Greater Toronto Area. One of these spots was Humber, where the scaly member of the Squad, Killer Croc, was housed in the Belle Reve prison.
The underground tunnels of Humber’s Lakeshore campus were used as a way to gain access to the sewage system upon the introduction of the character.
DID YOU KNOW?
Horror movies of the 1990s like Urban Legend also found their ideal setting in Humber’s Lakeshore campus buildings.
Humber’s G Building continues to make an appearance in scenes like this, where actress Alicia Witt plays a student who investigates the murders committed by a professor at Pendleton University. Humber plays a perfect backdrop as a campus, as at this point it had already been one for a number of years!
The Location Scout: Movies @ Humber is the newest pillar, featuring an investigation spanning approximately thirty years when production companies began to use the space in the 1980s following the closure of the Lakeshore Psychiatric Hospital.
The Movies pillar includes the inside scoop on what it takes to film a movie on the Lakeshore Grounds, which movies and television shows were filmed on the location, and a great guide to spotting a film crew in the area. As the curator of this brand new topic, it has been an exciting research endeavour to learn about the versatility of this space and how well it worked for media production.