Production hub will focus on digital content

MADRID — Murcia’s Contentpolis, one of Southern Europe’s biggest entertainment production hubs, is taking shape.

Playing off the digital content complex, which is skedded to open first half 2011, Murcia — in Spain’s market garden South-East — aims to leapfrog into the advance service age.

Total budgeted investment — public and private — runs to Euros1.53 billion ($2.41 billion), Jose Maria Salinas Leandro, Murcia audiovisual secretary, said Tuesday at a Feature Film Development seminar in Murcia, directed by Spanish producer Manuel Cristobal.

Located between Murcia and Cartagena, 10 minutes from Murcia’s new international airport, the 519 acre Contentpolis will focus on the production of animation, vidgames, and online and mobile content.

It will house three soundstages, a 538,195 square foot backlot, a 3-D animation center, and a motion capture suite.

Planned at 12,916, 6,458 and 3,229 square feet, the soundstages “will complement not compete” with Spain’s up-and-running Ciudad de la Luz studios, an hour’s car-ride up the coast near Alicante, Salinas said.

The site will also house editing and post-production suites, recording studios and a 3,013,894 square foot area for companies to build offices.

But Contentpolis will also house an a R&D Institute of Digital Images, a training center and a Creative Residence, where directors and writers can develop projects through to a pilot, backed by Contentpolis coin.

“Companies will be able to come and shoot at Contentpolis. But we want it to be a talent center, and for talent to stay in Murcia,” Salinas said.

Construction on Contentpolis begins fall/winter 2009.

Murcia regional authorities will plough $567.4 million into infrastructure, company installation, regional staffing and training.

The region is in talks to draw down low-interest longterm credit from the European Investment Bank, which favors regional development and innovation, in order to finance both public and private-sector investment related to the center, Salinas added.

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