Crown Works Studios

4D Studio Architects Film and Television Studios

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said:As we have seen from the UK’s success during awards season, our home grown talent is testament to the UK’s reputation as a film, tv and arts superpower.

Through our billion pound package of support for the creative industries, and by empowering local leaders and deepening devolution across England, we are backing British business, growing the economy, and developing the Oscar winners of tomorrow.”

“There’s no point in having dreams unless they are wild,” says the producer Leo Pearlman  “The idea of building one of Europe’s biggest film and television studios is, of course, wild, and I almost have to play down the scale of the ambition just so people don’t get scared off. But the truth is that 20 sound stages is just the start.”

Pearlman is a managing partner at the production company Fulwell 73, which has offices in Los Angeles, London and Sunderland. Fulwell 73 has five founders – friends Pearlman, Ben Winston, brothers Gabe and Ben Turner and James Corden. Its roster of productions include the Kardashians and the Friends reunion special. Sunderland-born Pearlman is the driving force behind what seems like an impossible dream in the city – however, he says it is realistic and achievable.

“There is no reason why Sunderland cannot become the new Atlanta,” he says “If you rewind 20 years, Atlanta was known for music and sport, certainly not for television and film. Fast forward 20 years and there are now more soundstages in Atlanta than anywhere in the US, except for California.”

The film and television studios designed by 4D Studio Architects will create more than 8,000 jobs and generate £334m for the local economy every year. “There is no point in doing things by halves,” says Pearlman.

4D Studio Architects are working with Fulwell Cain Studios to create a world-class film/high-end TV (HETV) production facility on an 80-acre brownfield site on the south bank of the River Wear in Sunderland. The project will invest around £450m in the development of Crown Works Studios-a 1.7msq ft film industry hub, with 20 premium sound stages suitable for major feature film and HETV productions.

Crown Works Studios will be one of the largest and best equipped filmmaking complexes in Europe: the development will include ample provision for production workshops and office space, a vendor village for supply chain businesses, administrative and social facilities, a multi-storey car park and an extensive backlot. The project has the active support of Sunderland City Council.