Ontario elated by 40% production jumps

While big-budget thriller “Red,” starring Bruce Willis, Helen Mirren, Morgan Freeman and John Malkovich, was shooting elsewhere in the Royal York Hotel last week, executives from the Ontario Media Development Corporation were announcing a 40% jump in film and television production.

Ontario’s film and TV production industry contributed nearly $1 billion to Ontario coffers last year.

CEO Karen Thorne-Stone said. “We’re here marking a return to production levels we haven’t seen since 2002. I think this is a remarkable accomplishment.” She added she anticipates “another strong year” in 2010,

“Red” executive producer Jake Myers, who has shot five movies in Toronto, including Oscar winner “Chicago,” said Canadian tax incentives were the big lure, although professional crews and great locations help.