Season 5 is a love letter to Toronto, says the cast of 'Flashpoint'
It’s not a rare sight to be walking down the streets of Toronto and find a film crew placing blue U.S. post boxes on the sidewalk or seeing iconic yellow New York City cabs parked on the street. But “Flashpoint” revels in its Toronto-ness. From shots of the CN Tower at sunrise, to Front Street’s Flatiron building, to car chases along the Gardiner Expressway, this season especially reads as a love letter to the city.
“We’ve explored all of the beautiful landmarks of Toronto and they’ve really become a character on this show,” says Hugh Dillon, who plays Team One’s leader, Ed Lane. “That is one of the greatest things about the show.”
“How we utilized the city of Toronto is what I appreciated most about the whole series,” agrees Enrico Colantoni, who plays Sgt. Greg Parker. “It really was a priority to showcase the city.”
David Paetkau, who plays sniper Sam Braddock, has also loved having “the run of the city.”
“We got to be back in the Air Canada Centre, which was neat!” he says. “I was up in the catwalk and though I don’t get freaked out about heights when I was up there, I got queasy thinking about it afterwards!”
“Because it was the last season, it became a mission to utilize buildings we hadn’t used before,” says Colantoni, “so when the Flatiron building became available, we jumped at the chance.”
The building was featured as the doctor’s office in the second episode of the fifth season. “It was so beautiful, with the curved windows,” Colantoni says.
“Nothing’s ever been filmed in there before.”
“There’s not a place, especially in the downtown core that we haven’t shot in,” Sergio Di Zio, who plays tactical expert Spike Scarlatti. “We have 75 episodes worth of memories.
“There are so many places where I got to look out and say, ‘Oh my God, what a beautiful city this is!’ And it’s been growing since we started shooting in the last five years – with all of the condos along the water, the skyline is totally different since we started the show! It grew, we grew, it’s kind of perfect!”
They often shot on Yonge Street, and around the University of Toronto campus, but Di Zio says he loved shooting on rooftops the best.
“In the first episode of Season 5, we shot that last scene from the roof of the Royal York (Hotel). We shot over night and we had the whole top floor of the hotel for the crew. I remember watching the sun come up over Toronto on that really, really freezing day.
“I feel like I fell in love with the city even more this year,” he muses. And since they wrapped up shooting, Di Zio moved down to L.A.
“I’m actually glad I’m not (in Toronto) right now, because it feels like a relationship is over and it’d be really sad to be there right now – seeing all the places we used to hang out, it’d be too hard!”
“Flashpoint” airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. ET on CTV. Full episodes are also available online at CTV.ca.
About Lindsay Zier-Vogel
Lindsay Zier-Vogel has been working for CTV.ca since 2008. Lindsay’s highlights include interviewing the famed American choreographer Bill T. Jones and Canadian prima ballerina Karen Kain, as well as covering the Juno Awards. Follow her on Twitter!