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Berlin’s Studio Babelsberg Set to Upgrade Facilities

Charlie Woebcken (left), CEO of Studio Babelsberg, is joined by German politicians Sigmar Gabriel and Dietmar Woidke

LONDON — Studio Babelsberg, one of Europe’s top production facilities and the production base for Hollywood pics like “The Grand Budapest Hotel,” has unveiled plans for its new exterior set, Neue Berliner Strasse.

Studio Babelsberg is investing more than Euros 12 million ($16.1 million) in the project, which is seen as a way to bolster the attractiveness of the Berlin region as a hub for production.

The modular hybrid set offers streets in various architectural styles situated across an area of more than 12,000 square meters. It will consist of removable facades that can be used in combination with green and blue screen backgrounds. Set walls, streets, pavements, apartments and store fronts can be reconfigured to suit the needs of each production.

On Monday, Charlie Woebcken, CEO of Studio Babelsberg, was joined by Germany’s federal minister for economic affairs and energy, Sigmar Gabriel, and the prime-minister of Brandenburg, Dietmar Woidke, for the laying of the foundation stone for the set.

Woebcken said: “We are competing with film production hubs throughout the world. A permanent exterior set was always an important element in Babelsberg’s attractiveness as a location. We will meet the current artistic and technological demands with the Neue Berliner Strasse, and hope that the new offer will enable us to continue to attract both German and international TV, advertising and feature film productions.”

Woidke said: “Studio Babelsberg combines myth and modernity. The studio once again does justice to this claim with today’s laying of the foundation stone. The ‘Old Berliner Strasse’ has helped write German film history. Its successor will now meet the established technical standards for film and television production. It is also through such further developments that film and TV formats can remain competitive in the digital age.”

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