Sky is to build a new 32-acre, state-of-the-art TV and film studio at Elstree.
The proposed development, that will house 14 sound stages, is backed by Sky’s new owner Comcast and in partnership with sister-company NBCUniversal. Legal & General will develop its site and provide financing for the project.
Sky says the new Sky Studios Elstree will lead to the creation of over 2000 new jobs and generate an additional £3 billion of production investment in the UK’s creative economy over the first five years of operation, from Sky, NBCUniversal and other producers
Subject to planning consent the 32-acre development is expected to open in 2022 and will be able to house the production of several films and TV shows simultaneously, with each of the 14 sound stages covering over 20,000 sqft. Once complete, the site will include production offices, a set construction workshop, a screening cinema and state-of-the-art post-production and digital facilities.
The creation of Sky Studios Elstree will provide significant capacity for Sky Studios to produce more original content in-house and will also play host to major film productions from Universal Pictures, Focus Features and Working Title, and television series from NBCUniversal Content Studios. It will also have capacity to host productions from third party producers.
Legal & General are in the process of finalising a detailed design of the scheme and expect to submit a formal planning application to Hertsmere council early next year.
Sky Studios Elstree will work in close collaboration with Elstree Studios despite both businesses being managed independently of each other.
Jeremy Darroch, Group Chief Executive, Sky, said: “Sky Studios Elstree will play a pivotal role in bringing the wealth of UK and European talent and creativity to the world. We know our customers love our award-winning Sky Originals like Chernobyl and our investment in Sky Studios Elstree will enable us to bring more unique stories to more viewers. We are proud to be working with our colleagues at NBCUniversal and Comcast, and our partners Hertsmere Borough Council and L&G to bring this project to life. Together we share a joint vision to create a world-leading production capability that will support the creation of thousands of jobs in the creative sector. We can’t wait to get started.”
Sajida Bijle, Interim Managing Director of Hertsmere Borough Council, said: “Hertsmere Borough Council is delighted by this announcement. This presents a fantastic opportunity to strengthen our creative industries in Hertsmere and build on our proud film and television heritage in the Borough. This scheme would bring significant employment opportunities to the region and put Elstree firmly on the global stage, whilst further enhancing our local film tourism. There will be opportunities for people to see the plans and to comment on the proposals once a formal planning application is submitted.”
Nigel Wilson, CEO of Legal & General Group, said: “The UK is a great place to invest. Growing at twice the speed of the economy as a whole and accounting for over two million jobs, our creative industries are a key component of Britain’s bright future. This investment is a great match for backing our UK pension promises. Sky, NBCUniversal and Comcast are global leaders in entertainment which will bring the best out of the UK’s amazing pool of talent. L&G is thrilled to be playing a supporting role in this major production.”
Roger Morris, Managing Director, Elstree Studios, said: “Sky Studios Elstree will be of immense importance to the UK Film and Television industry – it will not only boost the local economy of Hertsmere and Hertfordshire, but will also have a major impact on the UK’s creative sector as a whole. We are extremely proud that Sky Studios Elstree has chosen to locate near us and we look forward to working closely with them.”
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