1. Matrix-famous Keanu Reeves was born abroad, but became a naturalized Canadian citizen. He grew up, raised primarily by grandparents, in the Greater Toronto Area. Originally hoping to play Canada’s favourite sport, hockey, an early injury turned his attention to the big screen, and his film and acting career began in 1985. Many of his first stage and screen appearances were in Canada, including one role portraying a Quebecois goalie. He now owns a home in Hollywood and an apartment in Manhattan, New York.
2. Everyone’s favourite beach babe, Pamela Anderson, born in British Columbia, Anderson is actually Canada’s Centennial baby, the first child born on July 1, 1967. She was actually discovered in Canada, at a BC Lions game in Vancouver, hired from a Jumbotron shot to be the spokeswoman for Labatt’s Beer. Anderson’s multiple appearances on the cover of PlayBoy Magazine spawned her career, and her move to Los Angeles.
3. Self-taught cinematographer James Cameron has directed blockbuster and award winning films Titanic and Avatar. He grew up in Ontario, and it was his family’s move to California that took the Expatriate away from home. Intending to study physics, he dropped out after his first year and took odd jobs as he taught himself special effects, with the idea to combine science and art - successfully replicated in Terminator, and Avatar.
4. Toronto-born architect, Frank Gehry, has been called “the most important architect of our age.” His love for architecture and ingenious uses of different materials came from time spent building with pieces from his grandfather’s hardware shop for fun as a child. Gehry moved to Los Angeles and tried a variety of careers on for size before settling on architecture. Famous works include the Guggenheim Museum and the Walt Disney Concert Hall.
5. Joe Schuter is a comic book artist best known for his co-creation of Superman. Born in Toronto, Schuter moved to Ohio with his family around the age of ten. It was in high school in Ohio when he met Jerry Siegel, who wrote the Superman story. Schuster spent time living in both Los Angeles and on Long Island.
6. Young pop star Justin Bieber was born, raised and discovered in Ontario, Canada. Expatriating to the United States after his YouTube discovery in 2007. He moved to Atlanta to be close to both his label and his recording studio. Bieber’s first single hit the top of the charts, and he has never let anyone forget his Canadian roots.
7. Most recently as the villain in the Hunger Games series, Donald Sutherland became an Expat in 1957 when he headed to London, England to study theatre. He spent time in Scotland after quitting theatre school, but was born in Saint John, New Brunswick and grew up in Nova Scotia. Sutherland has appeared in a variety of films, such as Animal House and Pride & Prejudice.
8. Other musical Canadian Expats include Celine Dion. Dion was born in Quebec, and performed and recorded in Canada, with Canadian labels for many years before heading to Nevada for a regular performance schedule. She gained international fame as a Canadian, and is one performer that everyone remembers is from our home and native land.
9. Born at the southernmost spot in Canada, in Windsor, Shania Twain grew up in Timmins, Ontario. She performed first on CBC, and continued to attend high school in Canada as her fame grew. Her country band toured Ontario before Twain’s fame took her elsewhere. Although extremely popular in the United Kingdom, and living in Switzerland, Twain kept close to her roots by kicking off many of her future tours in Ontario, and holding frequent concerts in Canada.