A desperate father takes a dictator hostage during a TV interview to exchange for the release of his imprisoned daughter. When he discovers the cameras are live, he begins detailing the corruption between the TV station and the dictator.
When his estranged daughter is imprisoned in the African nation of Kanzaal, her desperate father devises a scheme to take Kanzaal’s dictator hostage during a TV interview. He interrupts the interview with a gun and a bomb, holding everyone inside the studio hostage until he is shown proof his daughter is safe.
When he discovers the studio cameras have gone live, he begins detailing the collusion between the owners of the TV station and the Kanzaal dictator. What he doesn’t know is that his daughter died in a Kanzaal jail and the police are only stalling him while they devise a way to rescue the innocents in the studio.
I wrote the script while working at TVOntario’s basement studio. It was small and soundproofed which made me wonder about the concussion effect a bomb would have.
I realized how easy and cost effective it would be to shoot such a story, using a studio as a studio. That stirred the script into motion.
That script got me hired to direct something else, Deadly Pursuit, after which I got to make Hijacking. I used the pseudonym, Joseph Williams as the writing credit because I wanted to direct it but wasn’t getting proper WGC rates for my script.
Our main location was CHCH’s old Telecentre on King Street in Hamilton, with parts of the new building on Jackson Street serving as the exterior and some limited interiors.
For the St. Kitts footage, I flew down with a singing group and a video crew who were working on another project. I was there three days to do shots for the movie using one of the girls of the group as the kidnapped daughter, then they went on to do their project and I came home to finish shooting.
When we landed at St. Kitt’s, our customs documents hadn’t arrived yet, so the officers were surprised to find guns in our luggage!
Most of what we shot, the “main event,” so to speak, was shot with multiple cameras recording. The three studio cameras were being recorded separately, while there were other cameras shooting inside the control room at the same time.