Space Check: AstroLab Studios
With the emergence of the Canada-United States, Free Trade Agreement in 1988 the Canadian film industry has steadily evolved into a surprisingly prominent ‘Hollywood North’. Today, American film production companies’ flock to Canada to receive up to 60% in Canadian tax incentives and rebates. These lucrative incentives have brought many American film and television productions to the north to take advantage of the professional crews, state-of-the-art studio space and infrastructure, and generally lower Canadian dollar. Blockbuster productions the likes of DC Comics – Suicide Squad, Triple X – The Return of Xander Cage, and Frontier have been filmed in Canada with Star Trek’s television series Discovery, Designated Survivor, and American Gods currently under production.
Even so, the landscape of large professional studios hasn’t progressed to service the surge of various content creators and independent filmmakers seeking to leave their mark in the Canadian film industry. The traditionally expensive studio spaces have forced professional creatives to choose between the client’s budget and production quality, a familiar process for Adam Weitner. “Since budgets were tight, creatives settled for mediocre studios and ‘OK’ half-assed productions,” says Adam. A quality production studio involved paying high booking and rental equipment fees, booking in a month in advance, and ultimately going over a client’s budget.
This ‘Catch 22’ is what Adam experienced as an upcoming creative. Adam started in the creative industry making social media content for several companies. Through his career journey, Adam noticed a void in affordable quality studios that were flexible – offered short term or hourly packages, on-demand, and offered all-inclusive equipment rentals packages upon bookings. Adam combined his experience as a creative with this industry void and ultimately founded AstroLab Studios.
With film production crews in mind, Adam turned a raw 7500 sq. ft space into a multi-production studio called AstroLab Studios. The production space consists of 3 studios. 1 audio recording & mixing studio, 2 boardrooms, a full kitchen, and a wardrobe/makeup room. The design layout of the studio was created to make an enjoyable comfortable production experience for high-end clients; however, Adam also wanted to offer a new generation of creatives a well-equipped professional studio at an affordable rate. AstroLab Studios expanded their mission statement by implementing a ‘we handle the how’ motto within their services. This allows them as a professional studio, to open their doors to ambitious clients who have the vision or ideas for their project, but the skills to create the content.
“We love to help. And if need be, ‘we handle the how’ of the creative project. We strive to teach clients what they don’t know in order to help them accomplish their goals”, replied Adam when asked. “To help clients avoid pitfalls or mishaps, we encourage them to visit the studio to discuss their vision and how it can be accomplished. This service is given without charge.”
“Some of our big name clients include Gatorade, who casted the Toronto Raptors DeMar DeRozan and Canadian Olympian Andre De Grasse for a product commercial,” says Adam.
Although AstroLab is still relatively new, they’ve been pretty busy and have bold future goals of becoming their own production company, in hope of one day creating an original series. For now, AstroLab’s journey is meshed with new experiences and with the help of the Spacefy’s platform, a diverse pool of clients.
“Spacefy has introduced us to a unique audience which is different from the traditional target market. This audience has allowed us to learn about the different hidden segments of the industry and the projects they work on. This target market both challenges and grows the current skills we possess.”
AstroLab Studios has positioned themselves as a professional on-demand production house that helps develop future creatives from diverse technical backgrounds, a strong trait for a nimble industry.
For bookings check out this space on Spacefy at https://www.spacefy.it/index.php/modern-production-facility
 Canada–United States Free Trade Agreement. (2017, July 05). Retrieved July 18, 2017, from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canada%E2%80%93United_States_Free_Trade_Agreement
 Madan, R. (2017, July 03). Blame Canada: U.S. visual-effects artists want reforms under NAFTA. Retrieved July 18, 2017, from http://www.ctvnews.ca/politics/blame-canada-u-s-visual-effects-artists-want-reforms-under-nafta-1.3487616
 Handling, P., Magder, T., & Morris, P. (2010, October 01). History of the Canadian Film Industry. Retrieved July 18, 2017, from http://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/the-history-of-film-in-canada/