Hamilton is ready for its close-up, thanks to the steady flow of tv shows and movies filming here.
Producers and directors love our friendliness and mix of urban and green spaces.
Historic architecture – unique in the region – minutes from beautiful natural areas, provide the perfect backdrop, helping make Hamilton one of the busiest filming locations in the region.
Bask in the city’s star power with our guide to some of our most popular filming locations to visit on your next trip.
Gore Park and the Downtown Core
Local residents have been strolling through this downtown stretch for more than a century and a half. The central park is surrounded by historic buildings, restaurants and shops and has long been a local meeting place and site for notable events. The scenic and historic area has caught the eye of many film makers.
Where You've Seen It: See it front and centre in the TV series The Umbrella Academy, starring Canadian actor Elliot Page and Hamilton's own TJ McGibbon, as well two seasons of Taken and the film, The Christmas Chronicles, with Kurt Russell.
Star turn: Take your photo in front of the gorgeous Victorian fountain, a Hamilton landmark.
Scottish Rite Club
Located on the corner of King and Queen Streets, this imposing historic red stone building has loads of drama, from 50-ft ceilings to stunning stained glass. Surrounded by a tall wrought iron fence, it was once home to a 19th-century tobacco tycoon.
Where You've Seen It: These days, it's a favourite spot for filming The Handmaid's Tale - both exteriors and interior scenes- as well as 12 Monkeys and IT: Chapter Two with James McAvoy. It was also featured in Guillermo del Toro's fantasy horror film Crimson Peak and the Emmy winning movie Self Made.
Star turn: Stand by the giant gates and you'll feel like a wee speck in their shadow.
Hamilton City Hall
This mid-century modern gem on Main Street West opened to the public in 1960. It's been well-preserved over the decades with a number of restoration initiatives and is steps away from downtown tourism attractions like the Art Gallery of Hamilton, FirstOntario Centre and hotels. Now, it's ready for its close-up.
Where You've Seen It: Director Guillermo Del Toro featured it prominently in his Oscar-winning 2017 film, The Shape of Water. The building’s distinctive interior is easily recognizable in a Season 2 scene of Umbrella Academy. You'll also spot it in TV's Designated Survivor with Canada-born Kiefer Sutherland plus the superhero series, Titans.
Star turn: Strike a pose in front of the 60-foot sign that spells out HAMILTON. Don't miss it lit up at night with 15,000 individual LED lights.
You can just feel the history at this 100-acre cemetery on York Boulevard near the harbour. This is the oldest public burial grounds in the city and the final resting place for soldiers from World Wars I and II as well as some of the city's most notable politicians including many of the city's past Mayors.
Where You've Seen It: Its eerie beauty has caught the eye of the creative team behind the TV series, American Gods, based on the best-selling novel by Neil Gaiman.
Star turn: Take a free guided walk through the cemetery to learn about its fascinating history and the dignitaries who chose to spend eternity there.
There's plenty of Hollywood-style glamour at this premier event space to draw film crews. The former CN Railway station built between 1929 and 1931 with Art Deco details is a real stunner and is a designated National Historic Site.
Where You've Seen It: Productions like CBC's Murdoch Mysteries, The Good Witch, Stockholm (starring Ethan Hawke), the first X-Men (2000), Umbrella Academy and Emmy winning Self Made have all featured this location.
Star turn: Get ready for your closeup and feel like a celebrity while you get your photo snapped on the front steps between the soaring stone columns. Then explore the shops, galleries and eateries along James Street North.
Gage Park and area
This grand urban park in the city's east end packs a lot of attractions into its 30 hectare footprint, including greenhouses, an elegant fountain, a lawn bowling club, tennis courts, perennial gardens, and a bandshell - a perfect backdrop for a host of events and lots of filming.
Where You've Seen It: Umbrella Academy filmed here as well as Canadian director Atom Egoyan's new film, Guest of Honour, starring Luke Wilson. Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark (written by Hamilton fan Guillermo del Toro) also used Gage Park as a backdrop.
Star turn: Make your friends think that you've gone somewhere tropical by taking a selfie in the lush greenhouses where Roots Canada recently shot one of its campaigns.
Just minutes from downtown, the waterfront area is always action packed. Tour Parks Canada's floating museum HMCS Haida, a Tribal-class destroyer that served the Royal Canadian Navy from 1943 to 1963; take a bay-side trip on a miniature train; roller skate or ice skate under the stars, and watch the waves and boats bobbing in the bay as you walk the paved trails.
Where You've Seen It: The West Harbour's beauty was captured on film in award-wining movies like John Q with Denzel Washington and Cinderella Man, starring Russell Crowe.
Star turn: Grab a coffee on site and explore the historic harbour and waterfront slated a huge redevelopment.
One of Hamilton's best-known attractions is a show stopper. Built in 1835 for politician Sir Allan Napier MacNab, the 40-room, neoclassic mansion is Hamilton's most iconic museum.
Where You've Seen It: The castle has co-starred in a number of productions, including blockbuster The Incredible Hulk, and more recently, the comic-book inspired series Umbrella Academy, Crimson Peak, a Gothic romance set in the Victorian era with Jessica Chastain, and season five of The Good Witch.
Star turn: Go behind the scenes with a tour of the castle, explore the kitchen garden and explore the military history of the site.
Tim Hortons Field
This multi-purpose stadium rebuilt on the site of historic Ivor Wynne Stadium has welcomed many types of fans including those who love football, soccer, rugby and live music.
Where You've Seen It: The Amazon Prime original series The Boys filmed here, featuring a motley crew of unlikely superheroes, co-created by Seth Rogen.
Star Turn: Grab a ticket to catch a game featuring Forge FC, the city's new professional soccer team, or CFL's Hamilton Tiger-Cats. The venue will also appear on television screens across the country when it hosts the Grey Cup in 2021.
Westfield Heritage Village
Unplug and slow down at this living history museum in rural Hamilton, where costumed interpreters lead demonstrations on everything from blacksmithing to bread-making, across 35 restored historic buildings, surrounded by vast green spaces.
Where You’ve Seen It: The comic book-inspired Locke and Key filmed its rustic key-making cabin scenes here. Westfield also stood in for Anne of Green Gables’ Price Edward Island stomping ground in Anne of Green Gables.
Star Turn: Climb aboard and explore a vintage 1903-built steam locomotive train, always a hit with young visitors.
50 Point Conservation Area
There’s a lot of fun packed into this 80-hectare waterfront park in Stoney Creek along the shores of Lake Ontario, including a pretty marina, campsites, hiking, and fishing.
Where You’ve Seen It: The famous whale scene in the anti-hero action-packed series The Boys was shot here. The conservation area has also provided a backdrop for popular shows such as Good Witch, Hardy Boys, and the filmed-in-Hamilton Murdoch Mysteries.
Star Turn: After working up an appetite, relax over a great meal overlooking Lake Ontario at Limani at Fifty Taverna nestled inside the conservation area.
Dundas Conversation Area
Get ready to be wowed by 1,200 hectares of lush forests, colourful meadows, cold-water streams and stunning rock formations at this destination conservation area. It’s even been designated as a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve as part of the Niagara Escarpment.
Where You’ve Seen It: The Conservation area was used in the new remake of the 1984 sci-fi movie Firestarter, based on a Stephen King novel. It was also a backdrop for the Margaret Atwood inspired blockbuster series Handmaid’s Tale and used in the filming of Hardy Boys and Anne with an E.
Star Turn: Don’t miss the replica Victorian train station at the Dundas Valley Trail Centre, a hub of the valley’s trail network and starting point for guided hikes and nature-inspired events.
Check out the full list of movie and TV series filmed in Hamilton.
It’s no wonder this unique creative industries complex – once the site of the Imperial Cotton Co. – in the city’s industrial north end is such a popular filming destination. The sprawling one-time factory is now home to more than 100 artistic and creative business tenants as well as unique indoor and outdoor spaces, perfect for diverse filming backdrops.
Where You’ve Seen It: The list of high-profile shows and movies filmed here is long and impressive. It's been used in well-known shows including Umbrella Academy, The Boys, Murdoch Mysteries and many more thanks to its industrial heritage and ability to replicate different eras. The Cotton Factory’s unique brick exterior also stood in for the Oscar-winning films Nightmare Alley and Self Made.
Star Turn: Fuel up post Cotton Factory visit at nearby Barton Street, packed with great eateries and coffeeshops.