American Doppelgänger

Rebekah Chotem

It’s well documented that Hollywood films use Canada to stand in for the US, including Brokeback Mountain, Good Will Hunting, the Twilight series, Rambo’s First Blood and many, many more blockbusters. A recent addition is Alejandro González Iñárritu’s The Revenant, set in 1823 in northern Louisiana territory, a huge chunk of North America that stretched from Louisiana all the way up to Alberta and Saskatchewan. Parts of The Revenant were filmed in Calgary and Squamish; Argentina was used last minute for snowy scenes because Canada’s winter was unseasonably warm. Squamish has stood in for the US, often as Alaska, in at least a dozen Hollywood films as is the case in Insomnia, starring Al Pacino and Robin Williams, and Double Jeopardy, starring Ashley Judd. In Robert Altman’s classic McCabe and Mrs. Miller the mountains around Squamish stand in for Washington State. The fight scene between Bob Barker and Adam Sandler in Happy Gilmore was filmed at Squamish’s Furry Creek golf course. I’m still waiting for a Hollywood blockbuster set in Squamish.

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