Bye bye Santa Monica, Amazon Studios is relocating to the Culver Studios lot. The lot was once the historic site of such films as Gone With the Wind (1939) & Citizen Kane (1941) and has had on-and-off use without a major owner since. (Note, this is not connected to the popular and now infamous hunt for Amazon HQ2 but for us in the industry it is much more exciting.)
Because the Culver City location is much bigger than Amazon’s former offices, this allows for (Drum-roll please) more hiring opportunities! At a respectable 280,000 sq ft (Still much smaller than larger lots like FOX and NBC) the studio will have its own part of the 600,000 sq ft campus. Amazon’s arrival to the Culver City lot comes amid a major remodeling effort of the campus at large spearheaded by Hackman Capital. In addition to Amazon, it’s also seen interest from companies such as Apple looking to lease space at the campus.
What does this mean for the LA film community? Despite growing fears of an Entertainment Diaspora from Los Angeles, Amazon’s decision to move into LA County proper means that large companies support for production in the LA community is still growing and evolving with the changing business models of entertainment. This also shows a growing trend of streaming services desiring LA-Based studios for their own productions, following on the heels of competitor and streaming giant Netflix moving into Hollywood. Amazon already films some of its flagship TV series in the LA area so they have a reputation of supporting the local film community and moving their studio into the LA permitting zone strengthens that reputation.
As competition between streaming companies ramps up in terms of production, these moves to secure studio space is both interesting and exciting and we look forward to what the future has in store for the LA film industry!
Quote source: LATimes