Location manager Paul Russell, left, with Tom Arnold, director of fund development with Victoria Hospice at the prestigious filming location in Oak Bay. (Octavian Lacatusu/Oak Bay News)

Film production in Oak Bay donates money to Victoria Hospice Society

Local property owner and film location manager donate $21,000 to charity

Lights, camera, action! A movie production company filming a murder-mystery series episode at a scenic Oak Bay location has donated $21,000 of its proceeds to the Victoria Hospice Society.

Not just any spot though, but the private residence of Black Press owner David Black, who donated his property as one of four locations in Oak Bay where the fourth episode of Hallmark series Gourmet Detective will be produced.

Only, instead of paying for using the property, Black and the production’s location manager Paul Russell, decided it was better to just take that money and donate it to the Hospice Society.

“It’s for a good cause, and the whole thing goes to charity,” Black told the Oak Bay News.

Russell, originally from Cowichan Valley, was excited to not only be back on the Island, but to film at such a scenic spot.

“We always thought to bring something big here with David’s blessing, and this seemed to work out very nicely,” he said. “We came by and had a look at it a few weeks ago, and our director fell in love with it, so we had to make this work.”

Running into its fourth episode since the series began in 2014, The Gourmet Detective is about a culinary whiz who uses his mastery of food, drink and cooking to solve crimes of the culinary world.

The show stars Dylan Neal, Brooke Burns, Matthew Kevin Anderson, among several other actors from Vancouver and B.C.

As for the Hospice itself, $21,000 certainly goes a long way, noted Tom Arnold, the organization’s director of fund development.

“The Victoria Hospice relies on community donations to provide 50 per cent of our budget every year, so to have a big boost like this to our support really feels great,” he said, adding that with funds like this, the Hospice can support newly-interned individuals, it could buy new equipment for patients as well as pay for training more nurses.

“Mr. Black has been a generous supporter [of Victoria Hospice] for many years now, and this is the second time that he’s given us a gift as a result of a film shoot here on his land, so we’re very thankful for his support,” Arnold said.

As for filming in the Greater Victoria Region, Russell is just happy to be back, especially being able to take in more of Oak Bay’s scenery and putting it on the silver screen.

“Filming in Victoria is such a unique environment to film in, especially that we can get something like this for a small-budget show.”

The film production crews will spend about a week in Oak Bay, a day to set up, four to film, and a day to wrap up, which will be this Saturday.

From that point, they go to another house on Humber Street, and then wrap up with three days in Metchosin at the Peder Bay Marina and a local farm.

“We have 14 locations in 14 days, and four of them are here,” Russell laughed.


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