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Marvel TV show filmed ‘brutalist’ Vancouver

LegionMarvel’s upcoming TV series Legion filmed in Vancouver partly to use the Canadian city’s “brutalist” architecture.

Legion stars former Downton Abbey actor Dan Stevens as the disturbed and possibly supernaturally gifted son of Professor Charles Xavier, who is a central character in the X-Men universe and films.

The show used a 160,000-sq-ft former supermarket in Vancouver as a production base for set-building and also filmed on location in the city, reports local paper the Globe and Mail.

“We shot all the exteriors at UBC (University of British Columbia) where they have a lot of that sixties and seventies brutalist architecture, and kind of embraced it,” said production designer Michael Wylie, in comments to the paper. 

Vancouver is one of Canada’s top production hubs and is also home to superhero TV series including Arrow, DC: Legends of Tomorrow and Supergirl, all characters that belong to the DC stable.

The X-Men movie franchise has been based on the other side of the country in Montreal for the past few years and is likely to return there this spring for new film X-Men: The New Mutants.

Marvel in fact films most of its TV series in New York – Jessica Jones, Luke Cage and Daredevil among them – while its films are based in Atlanta, Georgia, or in London. All three cities offer generous incentive support, world-class studios and experienced crews.

Vancouver’s popularity as a North American production hub means many shoots have to adapt un-used warehouses as filming spaces. Skydance Studios has been a recent addition in the city and is currently home to sci-fi series Altered Carbon, which is scheduled to film through to mid-June. 

City authorities set up the Vancouver Film and Media Centre last autumn to bring more inward investment to the city.

For more on filming in British Columbia see our production guide.

Image: FX/Marvel Entertainment