Fox Studios Australia
|Headquarters||Moore Park, New South Wales|
|Parent||21st Century Fox|
Fox Studios Australia is a major movie studio in Sydney, Australia, occupying the site of the former Sydney Showground at Moore Park. The studio is owned by News Corporation and was opened in May 1998. It is one of the three film studios in Australia, the others being Village Roadshow Studios and Docklands Studios Melbourne . The studios provide the ideal production setting for screen, television, commercials, music videos and other related productions.
Occupying a 32-acre-site, and just 15 minutes from the Sydney CBD, the movie studio is a major motion picture and television studio designed and tailored for 21st century productions. Providing facilities of the highest industry standards, the studio features eight sound stages, several production offices, workshops and over 60 independent entertainment industry businesses. Fox Production Services was established to provide end-to-end support for international film companies.
The studio has been involved in the production of a number of blockbusters, including The Matrix, Moulin Rouge!, Mission: Impossible II, Star Wars Episode II, Star Wars Episode III and Superman Returns.
Prior to 1998, the Studio's site was host to Sydney’s Royal Easter Show - the largest event held in Australia, and the sixth largest in the world. Since 1869, the Show has opened every year, except during the Spanish flu in 1919 and between the years of 1942 and 1946 when, it was, interrupted by World War II. The first Easter Show was held in 1823 and, in 1881, the New South Wales Government provided land for the Royal Agricultural Society at Moore Park where the show was held for 116 years. In 1998, the Show moved to a new showground and the former Sydney Showground at Moore Park became the home to Fox Studios Australia.
The largest single event of the Show was the Grand Parade on Easter Saturday when livestock of various classes were paraded to the public. The sight presented everything from Shetland ponies to Brahman bulls and Clydesdale stallions to huge audiences. From 1902 to 1919, the site expanded to the south and from 1920 – 1937, the Moore Park Showground expanded to the north. The standout features of the complex by this time were the peripheral walls, the Members’ Grandstand clock tower and the tower of the Anthony Hordern building (now the Banquet Hall).
The Government Pavilion, now Stage 1 and the Commemorative Pavilion, now Stage 7, were built after 1938. Trees that line the former cattle-judging ring between Stage 1 and Stage 3 were planted during this time and add to the character of the present site. In 1998, Fox Studios Australia determined that their vision was to create a new era in production facilities heralding in the 21st century. Therefore they have established a community of over 60 businesses and over 600 workers dedicated to almost every aspect of production.
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As the person enter Fox Studios Australia, they will immediately find themselves surrounded by entertainment businesses and industry professionals. They will also pass by the southern hemisphere’s largest sound stage. The history of the site provides an eclectic mix of new and old buildings, and manicured landscapes create proportion and space. The on-lot building exteriors and beautiful landscapes provide excellent opportunities for exterior shoots.
Located ten minutes from the Sydney city centre, the 132,000 square metre (32 acre) site includes eight stages, production offices and heavy industrial workshops, and a community of over 60 independent businesses. These businesses provide services such as equipment hire, travel and freight, casting, postproduction, and explosives/pyrotechnic factory, adjoining residential properties. Fox Lighting is Australia's leading supplier for major motion film lighting. Fox Lighting is equipped to cater for jobs of all sizes, from small stills photography shoots to large film productions.
Fox Studios Australia houses post-production specialists in film editing, sound re-recording and sound. Walking distance away is Trackdown’s 100 seat orchestral recording soundstage based at the neighbouring Entertainment Quarter. The exterior lot of Fox Studios Australia provides historic and modern buildings, immaculate landscapes and varied laneways to create memorable scenes with a strong sense of proportion and space. Commercials, music videos and other related productions can also take advantage of the lot’s various lane ways, historic and modern design buildings and manicured landscapes for their exterior shoot requirements.
Fox Studios Australia also boasts several facilities to make shooting incredibly comfortable and easy for both employees and talent. On-site retail and entertainment facilities are within walking distance of the studios – including shops, cinemas, cafes, restaurants, parks, major sporting facilities and entertainment venues. Fox Studios Australia catering facilities have fed thousands of cast and crew since opening in 1998. Fox catering facilities make it easy to provide meals and refreshments in a tranquil outdoor setting or marquee indoor seating.
Backlot Theme Park
Fox Studios Backlot was a theme park that was purportedly based on Universal Studios Hollywood, Universal Studios Florida, and Disney's Hollywood Studios. The $261 million park opened on 7 November 1999. It was closed at the end of 2001, the official reasons cited were the subsequent drop in domestic tourism caused by the collapse of Australian airline Ansett and the effect of the 11 September 2001 attacks in the United States in terms of international tourism.
An adjacent precinct provides restaurants and cafes, a retail complex, parklands, entertainment venues, and sporting facilities. The adjacent precinct was previously known as simply 'Fox Studios Entertainment Precinct', however has since been renamed 'The Entertainment Quarter' or EQ. When this area opened it was originally called 'Bent Street' and among its original tenants were Esprit, Sony Style, Hoyts, Sanity, and Dymocks.
Fox Studios Australia is owned by the media conglomerate News Corporation, under the terms of a 99-year lease from the New South Wales State Government.
The decision by the Carr Government in 1995 to allow News Corporation to take over the site was controversial and attracted criticism from sections of the media such as The Sydney Morning Herald and independent MP Clover Moore. It was alleged that a secret deal took place between the NSW Government and the owner of News Corporation, Mr Rupert Murdoch involving the donation of $25 million in taxpayers money for the new site
The studio has been involved in a number of movies and television shows including:
- Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie - 1994-1995
- Dark City - 1996-1997
- Babe: Pig in the City - 1998
- The Matrix - 1998
- Farscape – Series 1 - 1999
- Mission: Impossible II - 1999
- Holy Smoke! - 1999
- Moulin Rouge! - 1999-2000
- La Spagnola - 2000
- Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones - 2000-2002
- Kangaroo Jack - 2001
- The Quiet American - 2001
- The Matrix Reloaded - 2001-2002
- The Matrix Revolutions - 2001-2002
- The Night We Called It a Day - 2002
- Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith - 2003-2005
- Son of the Mask - 2004
- Stealth - 2004
- Superman Returns - 2005
- Australian Idol - 2007-2009
- Australia - 2008
- X-Men Origins: Wolverine - 2009
- Accidents Happen - 2009
- Tomorrow When the War Began - 2009
- The Barefoot Rugby League Show - 2010–present
- The X Factor (Australia) - 2010–present
- Minute To Win It - 2010–present
- Happy Feet Two - 2011
- The Voice Australia - 2012–present
- Young Talent Time - 2012
- Good News Week / Good News World - 2011
- The Great Gatsby - 2013
- The Wolverine - 2013
- A League of Their Own (Australian game show) - 2013
- Emmons, Natasha (1 November 1999). "$261 Million Fox Studios Australia To Open Nov. 7". Amusement Business 111 (44): 3, 45.
- Dick, Tim (20 September 2004), "Moore readies for new Fox Studios fight", The Sydney Morning Herald (Sydney)
- Milliken, Robert (26 October 1995), "Sydney enraged by Murdoch's film studio deal", The Independent (London)