×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Warner’s ‘Meg’ Helps Launch New Zealand’s Kumeu Film Studio (EXCLUSIVE)

New Zealand’s newest production facility, the Kumeu Film Studio is to launch thanks to a three-way partnership built around the China-Hollywood co-produced, action-adventure film “Meg.”

The studio facility in Kumeu was initially developed for the filming of the Jon Turteltaub-directed movie. Starring Jason Statham and Li Bingbing in a tale of a submersible vehicle under attack from a mysterious sea creature, the production made use of the part-built facility’s two water tanks.

Leaving these behind for use by other film and TV productions enabled the film to qualify for New Zealand Screen Production Grant’s 5% uplift, a financial bonus only available to a handful of productions that can demonstrate significant economic benefits to the country.

“This private and public sector partnership recognizes the significant economic, cultural and industry development benefits that ‘Meg’ will bring to New Zealand,” said NZFC chief executive Dave Gibson. The film “also broadens the perception of the New Zealand screen industry by showcasing Auckland’s Hauraki Gulf and the depth of New Zealand cast and crew.”

With a budget estimated at $150 million, “Meg” is co-financed by Flagship Entertainment, Gravity Pictures, a division of China Media Capital (CMC), and Warner Bros. It was this week confirmed as releasing in August 2018. It was previously announced as opening in China at Chinese New Year 2018 through Gravity, and through Warner in March 2018.

The complex is built on private land in West Auckland and is backed by the New Zealand Film Commission (NZFC), Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED), Warner Bros. Pictures and China’s Gravity Pictures. It will be operated under a 12-year lease by ATEED.

“It is great to have an additional facility in New Zealand, a place I know well. I love to produce films there,” said “Meg” executive producer Barrie Osborne (“Lord of the Rings”.)

When the complex is completed with its two sound stages in February 2018, Kumeu Film Studios will double Auckland’s screen studio infrastructure, and enable large scale screen productions in the region. The stages are both 2,336.3m2 (25,000ft2) and offer 14m (45.9ft) minimum internal height.

“While Auckland currently attracts large-scale production through its world class crew, production talent and locations, our full potential has been hampered by a lack of studio space, until now,” said ATEED chief executive, Brett O ‘Riley.

The 27ha site includes an indoor 5m deep, 1.3 million litre dive tank; and an outdoor 3m deep, 2.5 million litre ocean horizon tank backed by an 864 sq m green screen wall. The studio also has a 4,036 sq m ((43,448 ft2) stage, 1,215m2 (13,084 ft2) production offices, a 12 hectare (30 acres) forested back lot, and a 6,160m2 (66,305 ft2) workshop and manufacturing space.

“Meg” cast included acclaimed New Zealand performer Cliff Curtis, as the kiwi character Mac, a role which is both prominent and significant to the storyline. And the production also made use of Moxion.io, a New Zealand technology company, to provide access to dailies within New Zealand via a viewing platform for the film and TV market.

 

More Film

  • Avengers: Endgame

    'Avengers: Endgame' Reaps $83 Million in China by Early Afternoon of Opening Day

    “Avengers: Endgame” is already breaking records in China, raking in $83 million (RMB558 million) as of 2 p.m. on opening day Wednesday – two days ahead of the U.S. – and putting itself firmly on track to become the biggest Hollywood title ever in the Middle Kingdom. The Marvel finale has already set a new [...]

  • Film Review: ‘The Gift: The Journey

    ‘The Gift: The Journey of Johnny Cash’

    Very much in the manner of an “unplugged” acoustic album that showcases the musicianship of a major artist without distracting flash and filigree, “The Gift: The Journey of Johnny Cash” is a tightly focused yet impressively multifaceted documentary that attempts nothing less than to delve past familiar myths and illuminate the soul of its fabled [...]

  • Emily Morgan Cormac Fox Gregoire Debailly

    European Film Promotion Reveals 2019's Producers on the Move

    Twenty of Europe’s up-and-coming producers are going to Cannes with European Film Promotion. The organization unveiled its latest roster of Producers on the Move on Wednesday, a lineup that features France’s Gregoire Debailly, who produced Jean-Bernard Marlin’s “Sheherazade,” which premiered in Critics’ Week in Cannes last year, and Ireland’s Cormac Fox, who produced Sophie Hyde’s [...]

  • Avengers EndGame Trailer

    ‘Avengers: Endgame’ Tops Studios’ TV Ad Spending

    In this week’s edition of the Variety Movie Commercial Tracker, powered by TV ad measurement and attribution company iSpot.tv, Marvel claims the top spot in spending with “Avengers: Endgame.” Ads placed for the superhero film had an estimated media value of $6.28 million through Sunday for 927 national ad airings on 39 networks. (Spend figures [...]

  • Oscar OScars Placeholder

    Netflix Can Chill: Academy Rules No Change in Streaming Oscar Eligibility

    The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will not change eligibility rules for the Oscars, despite speculation that streaming companies might see a crackdown on their release practices when pursuing golden trophies. A board of governors meeting on Tuesday voted to maintain the status quo, that any feature-length film can be considered for the [...]

  • Aniara review

    Film Review: 'Aniara'

    Each year brings an example or three of purported “thinking person’s science-fiction” films, a category that pretty much embraces anything not centered on monsters or lightsaber battles. These efforts are often more admirable in theory than result, but “Aniara” — the first film drawn from Nobel Prize-winning Swedish poet Harry Martinson’s 1956 cycle of 103 [...]

  • Avengers: Endgame

    'Avengers: Endgame' Reviews: What the Critics Are Saying

    It’s been a long year for Marvel fans since the release of “Avengers: Infinity War,” but the wait is nearly over. The finale to the Infinity Saga is here, and while most diehard fans will know to avoid them for fear of spoilers, early reviews are mostly positive. Last year’s “Infinity War” took home an [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content