The Culver Studios broke ground on its Innovation Plan, the state-of-the-art transformation that will modernize the studio on December 9, 2018. The plan will more than double its size for next-generation productions. Amazon will lease more than 70 percent of the project for its production arm, Amazon Studios.
For those who value the century-old studio’s past as much as it’s future, the front of the property will remain unchanged, keeping the antebellum style mansion that has been a signature look ever since the David O. Selznick Studios created “Gone With the Wind” in the late 1930’s. The white columned porch and green window shutters will remain as the historic face of a 21st Century interior.
Culver City officials and other local dignitaries were on hand to help Hackman and Amazon Studios break ground on The Innovation Plan. “We are thrilled that Amazon Studios is calling The Culver Studios home,” said Culver City Mayor Thomas Small. “Amazon Studios’ commitment to our city and its inextricable link to movie making makes it easy for us to welcome them with open arms. We are looking forward to the company’s being here in full force.”
When the Innovation Plan is completed, The Culver Studios campus will total 720,850 square feet— including the mansion and adjacent bungalows, five new buildings, totaling 575,000 square feet, and two parking structures with 1930 spaces. All in all, the campus will offer 619,850 square feet of creative office and state-of-the-art production support space, 96,263 square feet of stages, and 4,736 square feet of stage support space.
Hackman Capital Partners, the developer that owns the studio, also announced that Amazon Studios has signed a lease for two additional buildings at the campus, expanding its total occupancy to 530,000 square feet, including its existing space in the mansion and bungalows and four of the new buildings once complete. Amazon Studios announced last year that the company would move its headquarters to the studios, along with affiliates IMDb, Amazon Video and World Wide Advertising, bringing space for new jobs in a wide variety of roles including creative, technical, marketing and legal.
Approximately 100 Amazon Studios employees currently work in the mansion and bungalows.
“We’re thrilled with Amazon Studio’s commitment to The Culver Studios as its anchor tenant—it’s the ultimate validation of all the hard work our company and the City have put into the campus’ redesign,” said Michael Hackman, CEO of The Culver Studios and founder and CEO of Hackman Capital Partners, which owns the studios through an affiliated entity. “The Innovation Plan will usher in a new century for the entertainment industry with world-class space, technology and studio support systems, all while preserving our legacy.”
Hackman gave special recognition to architects Genlser and Culver City Mayor Thomas Small for the celebrated redesign and to city and community stakeholders for their continued support of the project.
The ground breaking kicks off phase 2 of The Innovation Plan. Phase 1, completed earlier this year, included restoration of the historic mansion and four landmark bungalows. In addition, the bungalows were relocated from a remote corner of the lot to their new, more prominent location just behind the mansion. (SEE http://culvercitycrossroads.com/2018/04/12/culver-studios-cuts-the-ribbon-on-new-historic-bungalows-creating-space-for-amazon/)
Construction is anticipated be complete in early 2021.
Amazon will also be the major tenant at the Culver Steps, the development going up directly in front of Culver Studios in the center of the downtown plaza area. Amazon has signed on to lease 75,000 square feet, reserving all the available office space in the project.