The announcement that Abu Dhabi will invest in a world-class studio complex comes as neighboring Saudi Arabia begins to gain traction in wooing international projects.
A vast studio complex is being planned for Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, which has acted as an exterior site for portions of Hollywood franchises such as "Dune," "Star Wars," and "Fast and Furious."
The filming facility, titled twofour54 Studios, would stretch over 100 acres and include 11 state-of-the-art soundstages, an external water tank, and six adaptable standing sets, according to the state-owned media and production center twofour54 Abu Dhabi.
"Twofour54 Studios will be a future-proof, virtual production-ready, metaverse-enabled, and fully-fledged production destination, addressing high demand in the regional and global production landscape," according to a statement from the firm.
The studio property will include office space, as well as post-production and screening rooms.
Abu Dhabi is gaining popularity as a venue for international production because to its up to 30% refund on qualified costs, as well as no-hassle paperwork and logistical assistance. Apart from Hollywood films, the city, and its surrounding desert have attracted Bollywood productions such as "Bharat" and "Tiger Zinda Hai."
"The creative industries have been identified as one of Abu Dhabi's priority sectors given the important economic and social value they create," said Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, CEO of twofour54 Abu Dhabi parent firm ADNEC Group, in a statement. "Through twofour54 Studios, we are proud to drive Abu Dhabi's vision of becoming a leading global destination for content creation." Following its completion in 2025, it will boost film and television production to the next level, creating jobs and contributing to the local economy."
"Over the last 15 years, Twofour54 has facilitated thousands of productions, establishing a compelling track record and deep expertise of the global film industry's demands," twofour54 CEO Mark Whitehead made the observation. "Leveraging this invaluable experience, twofour54 identified an opportunity in the MENA region - the demand for an integrated, future-ready production destination," he continued.