(This post is brought to you by Iskandar Malaysia)
Pinewood Iskandar Malaysia Studios (PIMS) is scheduled for completion in May 2013 and it will be a state-of-the-art Film and Television Studio production facility with easy access to the Asia Pacific region.
The studios are located in the State of Johor, the southern gateway to Peninsular Malaysia, in the flagship development project of Iskandar Malaysia. With a range of stunning and diverse locations conveniently accessible from the Studios and the nearby production support hub of [email protected] – PIMS will be the new destination facility for the produciton of filmed entertainment in the Asian region.
PIMS is located in a 2,230-acre Medini development that features business parks, residential, healthcare, and hospitality amenities among others. Pinewood, in the Media Village district, will house film stages, television studios, and production facilities that will rival those of Hollywood and other signature entertainment centers worldwide.
“Creative content and communications is one of the government’s 12 key industries going forward, so this project fits nicely Studio into what’s happening federally and in terms of the Iskandar development,” says Keith Martin, Medini’s CEO.
Can Malaysia make a name for itself in the film industry? Absolutely, says Pinewood CEO Michael Lake. “Malaysia has been totally undersold as a destination. It has a fairly vibrant film industry with more than 50 films released already this year, and 70 or 80 slated for next year.”
The country’s location in the heart of Asia makes it accessible to virtually every country on the continent within five hours, and English is spoken widely, making it broadly appealing to the creative industries. Singapore is similar in those respects, but it lacks the land on which to develop new sites for growing industries, Lake points out.
“We’re developing this facility on 80 acres, which would be cost-prohibitive in Singapore. Malaysia wanted an iconic project that would help build this industry, and be a catalyst for the industry, but also for Malaysia. It’s a long-term strategy for the industry and for the country.”
Both Iskandar Malaysia and Medini offer investment incentives, and the federal government offers a 30% “Film in Malaysia” production incentive.
Lake says the Pinewood campus will serve as a one-stop shop for producers, where facilities are centralised and therefore more economical and convenient.
Pinewood will offer film stage rental, television studio rental and a fully integrated post-production facility for sound and vision. “Building stages from the ground up allows us to be cutting edge,” Lake adds. “We’re building a facility now where a producer can walk in with a script and walk away with a file for broadcast television or a digital file for cinemas. We are designing the space with that in mind.”
Source: The Expat March 2013
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