You sit down, settle into your seat – maybe it’s a couch, or a theatre. The opening scene unfolds and you realize, “Hey… I know that place!”. You’ve been to and seen this location before. Suddenly, your interpretation of the scene’s composition, colours and its context is supercharged. You can imagine yourself as part of the crew, and make judgments as if you were there shooting with them. Know the feeling?
When watching the coming of age gritty drama “Sleeping Giant”, this is exactly how a lot of us at Cinevate felt. That’s because the whole movie was shot entirely in Shuniah, Ontario – Thunder Bay’s cottage country. For those that don’t know, Thunder Bay is Cinevate’s hometown.
The film screened at over 40 film festivals around the world including its premier at Critics week in Cannes in 2015. It won Best Canadian First Feature Award at TIFF and the Best Canadian Feature Award at VIFF. It was also picked to be one of Canada’s Top Ten films of 2015.
Director, Andrew Cividino, was keen to infuse authenticity when casting, choosing to sift through every local high school’s drama program and handing out flyers at community centres and malls. This uncommon casting method paid off– the movie received four Canadian Screen Award Nominations in 2016, winning Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Nick Serino). Nick, a Thunder Bay native with no previous acting experience, heard about the casting call on Facebook. If you haven’t seen the film, we suggest checking it out!