British studio plans bold leap
Pinewood Studios is famous throughout the British Film Industry and has played a pivotal role in some major British films. Known as the home of James Bond, it has been involved in hundreds of films in various capacities from 1932, the Group behind it is also one of the largest film and television production facility providers in the world.
Now the studio is set to enter a new chapter in its history as it has just submitted a planning application for a purpose built living and working community for film and television production, and it is huge.
The development will create some six hundred jobs initially rising through to over nine hundred in 2022, it will also create a specialist academy for specialist training in the film and television industries, securing the nurturing of future British talent.
Project Pinewood, as it's called, will develop huge new streetscapes and filming locations, comprising of locations characteristic of locations from Europe to America such as Venice, Amsterdam, Prague and New York, offering British productions the ability to film foreign locations without having to travel abroad and reducing costs dramatically.
That's not all it intends to do though, building a housing community of around one thousand and four hundred houses it will providing for a population of around three thousand people, building a variety of housing projects, areas of open space, gardens, a nature reserve, an outdoor theatre, footpaths and cycle paths for recreation, crèche, primary school, sports facilities, health centre, and so on.
However these communities won't just be for living in, they'll be for filming too. Let me quote a little from the Project Pinewood site itself:
"As an example, a production could set up and shoot in a Parisian setting in the morning, a San Francisco setting in the afternoon, and be working during the same period in the production facilities in Pinewood Studios, all within a 15 minute walking distance.
The same operation carried out on location in Paris, San Francisco and Pinewood Studios would require the additional time, expense, and resource use to transport the team to two continents, set up three separate sets of filming arrangements with local authorities, police forces, and rely on the programme of activities being timed to coincide with these arrangements, with no 'fall back' option in the event of unforeseen conditions.
Importantly, Project Pinewood will be a community of up to 1,400 homes, integrated into a filming infrastructure and connected to new amenities. The importance of managing potential disruption to daily life during filming has been a key driver for the overall urban design of Pinewood. Pinewood will be pro-actively managed to respond to specific issues arising from filming and living on the same streets.
Buildings in Project Pinewood will have dual access on two frontages. One entrance will be located on a street which may be a potential filming street. The second entrance will face a mews, rear street, courtyard or landscaped deck and will become the primary entrance during filming periods. Residents will have advance information on filming schedules and will be able to plan accordingly."
It's an amazing development, and if you're interested or involved in the British Film Industry at all, or are planning a production that could utilise these facilities, then I'd suggest you head over to the site and have a look, it really is quite stunning.
More than how it looks is the potential it has for the British Film Industry. Not only can it build British talent and save huge costs with British productions, but it can start attracting foreign productions to the facilities and build the British industry on a world wide scale.
Pinewood Studios is already a world wide recognisable name, but with this addition it looks set to increase its presence in the world wide film industries as well as help to build up British talent and productions, and frankly that's just what's needed with current markets the way they are, investment for the future.