August 6, 2009: Capilano University receives funding for a new film centre

      Thursday, August 6, 2009
      Contact: Shelley Kean at 604.983.7596

      (NORTH VANCOUVER, B.C.)—Capilano University will get a new building to house its film centre thanks to a funding announcement made August 5 by Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

      Phase one of the university’s new film centre will be funded by a $30.2 million combined contribution from the federal government (through Industry Canada’s Knowledge Infrastructure program) and British Columbia’s provincial government. Funding for completion of phase two will be sought from other sources, including the private sector.

      Home to the largest full-time film program in Western Canada, Capilano University’s popular School of Motion Picture Arts has addressed student demand by doubling its program offerings in the last three years. This tremendous growth requires additional space along with facilities built to modern – and green – standards.

      The current film centre facility is housed in an old wooden portable building that has been used at the university’s North Vancouver campus since the mid-‘70s.

      “We are extremely grateful to the federal and provincial governments for their investment in a facility that will benefit an industry that is so important to the economic development of our region,” said Capilano University president and vice-chancellor, Dr. Greg Lee. “In particular, I would like to thank North Vancouver MP Andrew Saxton and our region’s MLA’s Jane Thornthwaite, Naomi Yamamoto, Ralph Sultan and Joan McIntyre for their continued and much appreciated support.”

      The project is expected to begin immediately and will involve building an entirely new structure which, like all new provincial buildings, will meet Leed® Gold certified standards. Once completed, Capilano University will offer modern film laboratories and classrooms that will be used for industry enhancement, technology transfer and increased access to knowledge.

      “We need to improve our infrastructure to keep pace with increasing demand and to maximize our potential to assist the industry,” Lee explained. “This new film centre will ensure that British Columbia, and Metro Vancouver specifically, retains its premier position as one of North America’s top three film production centres that contributes more than $1 billion annually to B.C.’s economy.”

      Films produced by Capilano University students and graduates have received national and international recognition at film festivals around the world.

      “Capilano University has been a major player in providing the education and training necessary to build British Columbia’s thriving film industry,” said Peter Leitch, president of North Shore and Mammoth Studios. “The film centre will be a cornerstone for young talented filmmakers to learn and maintain B.C.’s position as a leader in this industry.”

      Capilano University serves the communities of Metro Vancouver, Howe Sound, and the Sunshine Coast through campuses in North Vancouver, Squamish and Sechelt. Enrolment totals 6,700 students in credit programs each term with an additional 7,000 people taking non-credit courses annually. Capilano offers a complete range of preparatory courses, university transfer courses, business and management studies, creative and applied arts programs, health and human services programs, plus a range of services in support of student learning and success. Credentials awarded include bachelor degrees, associate degrees, post-baccalaureate diplomas, advanced diplomas, diplomas, certificates and statements of completion. It was established in 1968 as Capilano College and was redesignated a university by the provincial government in 2008.

      For more information on Capilano University’s film programs, visit

      For more information about Industry Canada’s Knowledge Infrastructure program, visit