You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Money Top Stories

Sky to create 2,000 jobs with new Elstree TV and film studio

The Guardian logo The Guardian 3 days ago Mark Sweney
© Getty

Sky is to build a Hollywood-style film studio in north London, creating more than 2,000 new jobs, as the pay-TV company ramps up its fight against streaming giants Netflix and Amazon.

The 13 hectare (32 acre) studio complex is being built in Elstree, just down the road from Elstree Studios where rival Netflix shoots flagship series The Crown, and will open in 2022.

Sky Studios Elstree will become the European production base for Sky and NBCUniversal, which owns Fast and the Furious maker Universal Studios, as both are owned by US pay-TV giant Comcast.

“Sky Studios will play a pivotal role in bringing the wealth of UK and European talent and creativity to the world,” said the Sky group chief executive, Jeremy Darroch. “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.”

The company has made the move to develop its own production base as the UK increasingly faces a squeeze on studio space as TV companies, film studios and the streaming giants pour billions into making content.

More than 200 films and 120 high-end TV shows were made in the UK last year with a total production spend of more than £3bn.

Gallery: The megaprojects that changed countries forever (Love Money)

Sky spends about £7bn annually on programming, from Premier League rights to buying shows such as Game of Thrones and original productions such as Chernobyl and Fortitude. Sky as said that it intends to double the amount it spends on making its own shows to about £1bn a year over the next five years.

Sky Studios Elstree will have 14 stages, the smallest of which be 1,800 sq metres, which will be enough space to shoot several films and TV shows at the same time. It will be about a third bigger than the plans to build a Hollywood-style studio complex in Dagenham East, which have stalled after the developer put its plans on hold.

Earlier this year Netflix struck a deal to set up a permanent production base at Shepperton, home to films including Alien and Mary Poppins Returns. Netflix is spending about $500m (£385m) on making show and films in the UK this year. Disney, which recently launched its Disney+ streaming service in a number of international markets, has secured space at Pinewood Studios, home to Star Wars and James Bond.

Our Christmas Together Appeal proudly supports Age UK and The Children’s Society who are providing vital services to society’s most vulnerable this festive season. Because no one should feel alone. Together we can make a big difference. Join us here.


More from The Guardian

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon