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Period musical Strike! plans Winnipeg filming

A film version of period musical Strike! is planning a summer 2016 shoot in the central Canadian city of Winnipeg in Manitoba.

Strike! tells the story of a romance set against the backdrop of the 1919 Winnipeg General Strike. The film will star British actress Samantha Barks (pictured), who played a key role in Tom Hooper’s big-screen version of Les Miserables, and will be produced on a relatively low budget of CA$10m.

"A lot of it is tax credits, so some of it is still fluid as you determine exactly what amount is tax credit and what amount comes from other sources," said Danny Schur, co-writer and producer of Strike!, in comments to the Winnipeg Free Press.

"Some of that money will come the international distribution, which I'll be working at getting over the next number of months, and then there's still private investment to come to the table.

"Canadian films are typically supported primarily by Telefilm (Canada); this will be more like an international film or an American film that is supported by private investment, distribution advances and tax credits."

Film production in Canada is focused on Vancouver and Toronto, but Manitoba offers a generous filming tax credit with a base rate of 45% and bonuses for rural shoots. The tax credit has an annual fund of around CA$17m. 

In recent years Manitoba has hosted scenes for high-profile features like the Oscar-winning Capote and Brad Pitt’s brooding western The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford.  

For more on filming in Manitoba see our production guide.

Image: Laurie Sparham/Universal Pictures