Comical Christmas takes over Hamilton City Centre

News Jul 02, 2022 by Daniel Nolan Hamilton Spectator

It was one of the hottest days of the year, so it was surprising to find Santa Claus at the Hamilton City Centre in downtown Hamilton.

But, it wasn’t really Saint Nick himself, but actor Jonathan Langdon dressed up for the part in a Christmas/heist movie that filmed at the James Street North mall through the month of June.

Langdon was spotted on set of the TV movie “Faith Heist 2” last Thursday afternoon, the day the city was under an extreme heat advisory. He didn’t seem to mind being dressed in his red and white suit as he walked through the mall with another actor wearing a green elf costume.

City Centre was made up to look like it was Christmastime. There were decorations and tinsel hanging all around the mall and Christmas trees around the elevator on the basement floor. Filming for the TV movie wrapped up Friday after starting on June 6.

The mall is the setting for Part 2 of a story about a church congregation that make wrongs right with a heist. “Faith Heist,” which filmed in Hamilton in 2020, was shown on Super Channel Heart and Home and on the Atlanta-based Bounce TV in the U.S. in May 2021. It shot scenes at King’s Forest Golf Course, Delta United Church and at the Ottawa BIA and Hambrgr restaurant on Ottawa Street North.

It struck a chord with viewers and a sequel was ordered. It was also nominated for five Canadian Screen Awards, including Best TV Movie and Writing. Actor-director J.B Sugar, who directed the first film, is helming the sequel. He was a director for the TV Vampire series “Bitten” (2014-2016).

In the first one, Pastor Benjamin Wright (Langdon) finds his church in financial ruin after being swindled by a shady financial adviser. He rallies members of his congregation to pull off a heist to get their money back and save the church before it’s too late.

The production company did not respond to a Spectator request for comment on Part 2, but it is described in a notice to mall visitors from Ho Ho Heist Inc.

“We are filming a Christmas movie about three thieves that break into a mall and steal a Christmas star,” it said. “We will be doing traps and pranks Home-Alone style.”

Jas Wandi, who runs Mountain Gift & Toys with her husband, Jai, said the cast and crew shot scenes all over the mall, including in front of her store. She said the mall is often used by filmmakers.

“They are always coming here,” said Wandi. “They go to different areas, but this time they filmed around the whole area.”

Langdon, who hails from Pickering, might best be known for the sci-fi TV series “Utopia Falls.” He has also been in “Odd Squad.”

The film also features Jaedon Noel, Aaron Poole, Eden Cupid, Nadine Whiteman-Roden, Marium Carvell, Marty Adams, Ray Galletti, Dylan Taylor and Sagine Semajuste, who plays the pastor’s wife, Vanessa. The majority of the cast were in the first film.

The film was written by actor-writers Owen Maxell and Jimmy Ruggiero.


It looks like there will be a lot of Hamilton in the CTV sitcom “Children Ruin Everything.”

The program has been filming steadily since April across the city for its second season. The show is about a couple (Meaghan Rath and Aaron Abrams) who try to balance work with being parents of two rambunctious children.

“The Hammer has been a great place to film,” show creator Kurt Smeaton said in a recent tweet. “And eat Monster Donuts.”

In May and June, the show filmed at such places as Gage Park, Hamilton City Centre, H.A.A.A Grounds, Sheraton Hotel, Christie Lake Conservation Area, St. Joseph’s Catholic Elementary School, Hamilton Film Studios on Wellington Street North, two businesses on James Street North and at homes in Flamborough, the Locke Street area and the east Mountain.

Daniel Nolan is a freelance writer who writes about film for The Hamilton Spectator. He can be reached at dannolanwrites@gmail.com

Comical Christmas takes over Hamilton City Centre

Family-friendly ‘Faith Heist 2’ is sequel to 2020 film

News Jul 02, 2022 by Daniel Nolan Hamilton Spectator

It was one of the hottest days of the year, so it was surprising to find Santa Claus at the Hamilton City Centre in downtown Hamilton.

But, it wasn’t really Saint Nick himself, but actor Jonathan Langdon dressed up for the part in a Christmas/heist movie that filmed at the James Street North mall through the month of June.

Langdon was spotted on set of the TV movie “Faith Heist 2” last Thursday afternoon, the day the city was under an extreme heat advisory. He didn’t seem to mind being dressed in his red and white suit as he walked through the mall with another actor wearing a green elf costume.

City Centre was made up to look like it was Christmastime. There were decorations and tinsel hanging all around the mall and Christmas trees around the elevator on the basement floor. Filming for the TV movie wrapped up Friday after starting on June 6.

The mall is the setting for Part 2 of a story about a church congregation that make wrongs right with a heist. “Faith Heist,” which filmed in Hamilton in 2020, was shown on Super Channel Heart and Home and on the Atlanta-based Bounce TV in the U.S. in May 2021. It shot scenes at King’s Forest Golf Course, Delta United Church and at the Ottawa BIA and Hambrgr restaurant on Ottawa Street North.

It struck a chord with viewers and a sequel was ordered. It was also nominated for five Canadian Screen Awards, including Best TV Movie and Writing. Actor-director J.B Sugar, who directed the first film, is helming the sequel. He was a director for the TV Vampire series “Bitten” (2014-2016).

In the first one, Pastor Benjamin Wright (Langdon) finds his church in financial ruin after being swindled by a shady financial adviser. He rallies members of his congregation to pull off a heist to get their money back and save the church before it’s too late.

The production company did not respond to a Spectator request for comment on Part 2, but it is described in a notice to mall visitors from Ho Ho Heist Inc.

“We are filming a Christmas movie about three thieves that break into a mall and steal a Christmas star,” it said. “We will be doing traps and pranks Home-Alone style.”

Jas Wandi, who runs Mountain Gift & Toys with her husband, Jai, said the cast and crew shot scenes all over the mall, including in front of her store. She said the mall is often used by filmmakers.

“They are always coming here,” said Wandi. “They go to different areas, but this time they filmed around the whole area.”

Langdon, who hails from Pickering, might best be known for the sci-fi TV series “Utopia Falls.” He has also been in “Odd Squad.”

The film also features Jaedon Noel, Aaron Poole, Eden Cupid, Nadine Whiteman-Roden, Marium Carvell, Marty Adams, Ray Galletti, Dylan Taylor and Sagine Semajuste, who plays the pastor’s wife, Vanessa. The majority of the cast were in the first film.

The film was written by actor-writers Owen Maxell and Jimmy Ruggiero.


It looks like there will be a lot of Hamilton in the CTV sitcom “Children Ruin Everything.”

The program has been filming steadily since April across the city for its second season. The show is about a couple (Meaghan Rath and Aaron Abrams) who try to balance work with being parents of two rambunctious children.

“The Hammer has been a great place to film,” show creator Kurt Smeaton said in a recent tweet. “And eat Monster Donuts.”

In May and June, the show filmed at such places as Gage Park, Hamilton City Centre, H.A.A.A Grounds, Sheraton Hotel, Christie Lake Conservation Area, St. Joseph’s Catholic Elementary School, Hamilton Film Studios on Wellington Street North, two businesses on James Street North and at homes in Flamborough, the Locke Street area and the east Mountain.

Daniel Nolan is a freelance writer who writes about film for The Hamilton Spectator. He can be reached at dannolanwrites@gmail.com

Comical Christmas takes over Hamilton City Centre

Family-friendly ‘Faith Heist 2’ is sequel to 2020 film

News Jul 02, 2022 by Daniel Nolan Hamilton Spectator

It was one of the hottest days of the year, so it was surprising to find Santa Claus at the Hamilton City Centre in downtown Hamilton.

But, it wasn’t really Saint Nick himself, but actor Jonathan Langdon dressed up for the part in a Christmas/heist movie that filmed at the James Street North mall through the month of June.

Langdon was spotted on set of the TV movie “Faith Heist 2” last Thursday afternoon, the day the city was under an extreme heat advisory. He didn’t seem to mind being dressed in his red and white suit as he walked through the mall with another actor wearing a green elf costume.

City Centre was made up to look like it was Christmastime. There were decorations and tinsel hanging all around the mall and Christmas trees around the elevator on the basement floor. Filming for the TV movie wrapped up Friday after starting on June 6.

The mall is the setting for Part 2 of a story about a church congregation that make wrongs right with a heist. “Faith Heist,” which filmed in Hamilton in 2020, was shown on Super Channel Heart and Home and on the Atlanta-based Bounce TV in the U.S. in May 2021. It shot scenes at King’s Forest Golf Course, Delta United Church and at the Ottawa BIA and Hambrgr restaurant on Ottawa Street North.

It struck a chord with viewers and a sequel was ordered. It was also nominated for five Canadian Screen Awards, including Best TV Movie and Writing. Actor-director J.B Sugar, who directed the first film, is helming the sequel. He was a director for the TV Vampire series “Bitten” (2014-2016).

In the first one, Pastor Benjamin Wright (Langdon) finds his church in financial ruin after being swindled by a shady financial adviser. He rallies members of his congregation to pull off a heist to get their money back and save the church before it’s too late.

The production company did not respond to a Spectator request for comment on Part 2, but it is described in a notice to mall visitors from Ho Ho Heist Inc.

“We are filming a Christmas movie about three thieves that break into a mall and steal a Christmas star,” it said. “We will be doing traps and pranks Home-Alone style.”

Jas Wandi, who runs Mountain Gift & Toys with her husband, Jai, said the cast and crew shot scenes all over the mall, including in front of her store. She said the mall is often used by filmmakers.

“They are always coming here,” said Wandi. “They go to different areas, but this time they filmed around the whole area.”

Langdon, who hails from Pickering, might best be known for the sci-fi TV series “Utopia Falls.” He has also been in “Odd Squad.”

The film also features Jaedon Noel, Aaron Poole, Eden Cupid, Nadine Whiteman-Roden, Marium Carvell, Marty Adams, Ray Galletti, Dylan Taylor and Sagine Semajuste, who plays the pastor’s wife, Vanessa. The majority of the cast were in the first film.

The film was written by actor-writers Owen Maxell and Jimmy Ruggiero.


It looks like there will be a lot of Hamilton in the CTV sitcom “Children Ruin Everything.”

The program has been filming steadily since April across the city for its second season. The show is about a couple (Meaghan Rath and Aaron Abrams) who try to balance work with being parents of two rambunctious children.

“The Hammer has been a great place to film,” show creator Kurt Smeaton said in a recent tweet. “And eat Monster Donuts.”

In May and June, the show filmed at such places as Gage Park, Hamilton City Centre, H.A.A.A Grounds, Sheraton Hotel, Christie Lake Conservation Area, St. Joseph’s Catholic Elementary School, Hamilton Film Studios on Wellington Street North, two businesses on James Street North and at homes in Flamborough, the Locke Street area and the east Mountain.

Daniel Nolan is a freelance writer who writes about film for The Hamilton Spectator. He can be reached at dannolanwrites@gmail.com