There’s plenty of action during filming of The Baker’s Son. (Photo by Don Bodger)

There’s plenty of action during filming of The Baker’s Son. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Island community provides the perfect small town atmosphere for movie shoot

Chemainus takes on the persona of Windward, Washington for Hallmark production

Chemainus is now known as Windward, Washington during filming of The Baker’s Son.

The Hallmark movie is being filmed by Minute-Road Production Limited until the end of the week in a portion of the downtown core on Willow Street between Victoria and Mill Street.

Changes to the Chemainus landscape have sprung up, with McBride’s taking over as the name of the Willow Street Cafe which is the primary shooting location. Ironically, as local residents know, McBride’s is the name of the community’s iconic service station but its alter ego has the reputation for being “the best coffee in town” according to a sign outside the establishment.

Banners reading “Welcome To Windward, Washington,” a place apparently established in 1830, line the street. There’s also a Windward Realty office next to McBride’s.

The other obvious change to that part of town is the presence of American flags at the entrance to the Western Forest Products Chemainus sawmill for the backdrop to the movie.

Underneath all the window dressing, it’s still Chemainus and folks can look forward to seeing the familiar town sites in the finished product.

“We selected it because it’s so great,” said Steve Kinghorn, the location manager. “It’s a very pretty small town.

“We were scouting around for the last month.”

There is a real Windward High School in Bellingham, Washington but the fictional Windward is pegged as a coastal town in Washington state for the movie.

After shooting wraps up in Chemainus at the end of the week, the scene shifts for two days to Cowichan Bay – Monday at True Grain Bread and Tuesday at the dock – before wrapping up in Victoria for eight days. Filming ends on April 1.

“This will probably be on the air by late spring – I would say by June,” said Kinghorn.

“For people trying to look out for it, a lot of our movies show up on the W Channel.”

The exact story line is being kept under wraps, other than Kinghorn saying “it’s a romantic comedy. This is a little bit more of a comedy than the love story.”

People who’ve never seen a movie being filmed before will quickly discover it’s a painstaking process. Each scene requires several rehearsals and then numerous takes.

Such things as an ambulance siren in the background, a helicopter flying overhead and even the sun coming up and going back behind the clouds required delays in the process Monday to get all the scenes just right.

Otherwise, it was an ideal day to begin shooting except for a chilly start until the sun broke through for most of the day.

Related story: Hallmark movie crews moving into Chemainus for the week

The film brought a large influx of personnel into the community with cast and crew.

“Probably 50 here plus the background extras and the cast,” noted Kinghorn.

“Everyone’s been very welcoming,” he added.

Kinghorn said four productions, including the Baker’s Son, are expected to be completed for Hallmark by the middle of May amid a busy shooting schedule.

Like every other industry, it’s been a different time for movie productions.

“We’ve got very strict COVID protocols in place,” Kinghorn indicated. “The industry opened up after about a three-month hiatus. We opened up about the first of July.”

The benefits of the attention the film will bring to town are considered significant once full-fledged tourism returns.

“This is the best thing that could happen to Chemainus and put them on the map internationally,” said Don Goodman, co-owner of the Willow Street Cafe, who also lives upstairs and has a bird’s eye view of the filming.

Willow Street Cafe closed for the week, with the movie’s cast and crew taking over the building.

“They’re decorating to their taste,” noted Goodman. “They’ve even got curtains on the windows.”

“This is a natural location,” he added of Chemainus as a whole. “Every year there should be something.

“I think we could use a college of the arts to support the theatre and the jobs.”

The Baker’s Son is being directed by Mark Jean.

EntertainmentFilm industryMovies

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Make-up touch-ups are applied during a break in shooting for The Baker’s Son. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Make-up touch-ups are applied during a break in shooting for The Baker’s Son. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Cameraman zeroes in on shooting a scene. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Cameraman zeroes in on shooting a scene. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Camera and sound crew set up for a shot. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Camera and sound crew set up for a shot. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Crew sets up for shooting in The Baker’s Son. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Crew sets up for shooting in The Baker’s Son. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Matthew Blecha, assistant director for The Baker’s Son, makes a point before filming begins. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Matthew Blecha, assistant director for The Baker’s Son, makes a point before filming begins. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Actors swing into action for scene rehearsal. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Actors swing into action for scene rehearsal. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Sound work requires a steady hand. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Sound work requires a steady hand. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Extras for The Baker’s Son get ready to move into place. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Extras for The Baker’s Son get ready to move into place. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Dylan Castro is tasked with traffic control on Willow Street. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Dylan Castro is tasked with traffic control on Willow Street. (Photo by Don Bodger)

All hands are on deck for shooting of The Baker’s Son in downtown Chemainus. (Photo by Don Bodger)

All hands are on deck for shooting of The Baker’s Son in downtown Chemainus. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Scene during filming of The Baker’s Son in downtown Chemainus Monday. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Scene during filming of The Baker’s Son in downtown Chemainus Monday. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Just Posted

The Latoria South section of the Royal Bay development in Colwood could include a new long-term care facility. (Black Press Media file photo)
Colwood’s Royal Bay could be home to new long-term care facilities

Capital Regional Hospital District board approves $8M land purchase for purpose

Demonstrators at the legislature on April 14 called on the province to decriminalize drug possession and provide widespread access to regulated safe supply across B.C. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)
Rally calls for decriminalization, safe supply as overdose emergency turns 5

From 2016 to the end of February, 7,072 British Columbians died due to overdose

(Black Press Media file photo)
Youth gets combative with police at Victoria hospital

VicPD officer injured, youth kept in care under Mental Health Act

A man with a history of sexual offences was arrested after he followed and aggressively tried to talk to two young woman on the weekend. Black Press File Photo
Man convicted of sexual offences arrested after teens followed in Victoria

Women hid in a Quadra Village convenience store as man aggressively tried to get in

A few dozen students and parents gathered outside Lansdowne Middle School April 14 to protest proposed budget cuts to SD61 music programs. From left to right: Lyra Gaudin, Cleo Bateman, Abby Farish, Brigitte Peters, Enid Gaudin, Des Farish. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)
SD61’s proposed $7 million cuts threaten equity and inclusion, say parents, teachers

Music classes, inclusion services, reading programs on the line

(Black Press Media file photo)
POLL: Do you have a plan in place in the event of a tsunami?

Tsunamis have claimed the lives of more than 250,000 people between 1998… Continue reading

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of April 13

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

(Government of Canada)
Liberal MP caught stark naked during House of Commons video conference

William Amos, in Quebec, appeared on the screens of his fellow members of Parliament completely naked

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, Feb. 1, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count jumps to 1,168 Wednesday, nearly 400 in hospital

Now 120 coronavirus patients in intensive care, six more deaths

Moss covered branches are seen in the Avatar Old Growth Forest near Port Renfrew on Vancouver Island, B.C. Thursday, Sept. 29, 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. blockades aimed at protecting old-growth forests reveal First Nation split

Two Pacheedaht chiefs say they’re ‘concerned about the increasing polarization over forestry activities’ in the territory

One of the grand prizes for this year's Hometown Heroes Lottery includes a seaside home at SookePoint, $1.5 million, and an Audi Quattro. (Photo courtesy of Hometown Heroes)
Hometown Heroes Lottery features seaside home in Sooke

A stunning seaside home in Sooke could be yours for the price… Continue reading

City workers from Duncan were busy recently putting up street signs in both Hul’q’umi’num’ and English. (Submitted photo)
Hul’q’umi’num street signs installed in downtown Duncan

Partnership with Cowichan Tribes sees English street names twinned with Indigenous language

Homicide investigators who asked not to be identified put up signs Wednesday, April 14, along the Nanaimo Parkway in the area where a body was found March 31. RCMP are asking for witnesses or dash cam footage as the suspicious death has now been ruled a homicide. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
Suspicious death along the highway in Nanaimo now being investigated as a homicide

RCMP identify victim as Randell Charles Thomas, repeat call for any information related to the case

Most Read