Wuxi in US management pact
By Patrick Frater
Wed, 06 June 2012, 11:31 AM (HKT)
China's emerging Wuxi Studio complex in Jiangsu Province is to be managed by the Raleigh Studios group of the US.
Raleigh, which already operates studios in six US locations and in Hungary, has entered into a long-term management contract with Wuxi, which is chaired by Sid Ganis, former president of the Oscars organisation, the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences.
The management deal is expected to help the studios attract overseas studio and independent films, as well as ensure technical quality standards are compatible with international requirements.
Less than an hour from Shanghai, the $1.5 billion Wuxi complex is being built in two phases, the first of which will open later this summer. In a disused steel factory, the first phase includes six sound stages, post-production and editing facilities and a commercial zone with theatres, restaurants, nightclubs and other interactive experiences.
The second phase, announced as opening in 2013, will include five purpose-built sound stages. These will include a water tank, China's largest "super stage" and a city backlot that will double up for filming and tourist visits.
Wuxi is a venture of the Chinese government and is sanctioned by the State Administration of Radio Film Board (SARFT).
In time it is anticipated that some 800 companies will be located at Wuxi. SARFT announced that companies including E3D and The Foundry from the UK, Mokko Studio from Canada will set up post-production and visual effects units at the complex and that China's Base FX may also set up a unit.
Film productions shooting at Wuxi may be able to obtain financing from the $150 million Wuxi Film and Television Fund, which is operated by the Wuxi Jinyu Investment Management Co. It sees the fund as aimed at international co-productions and domestic Chinese projects.
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