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STUDIOS UK

Pinewood Shepperton predicts lower income for 2005

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Yesterday 21 March, during the presentation of its annual report, Pinewood Shepperton studios said they predicted a substantial reduction in their revenues for the first half of 2005 because of the fiscal uncertainty that hit the UK production sector in 2004 as well as the continued weakness of the US dollar that contributed to the delaying of big productions booked at the film studios.
The historical film studios that housed the James Bond series warned that the company’s total income for 2005 would therefore be reduced compared with 2004, but was optimistic for the second half of the year thanks to the government’s recent budget that reconfirmed the Treasury’s commitment to fiscal incentives and the improved replacement of Section 42 tax relief.

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“The government has reiterated its commitment to UK film by extending the supportive fiscal regime in the recent budget”, commented Michael Grade, chairman of the studios. “Our performance in the first half of 2005 will be adversely affected by the uncertainty that has surrounded this issue and we are delighted that much of the uncertainty has now been removed. We look forward to the future with confidence”, he said.

The profit warning for 2005 was just a toning down in the globally positive review of the company’s 2004 final results. Pinewood Shepperton, among the leading European providers of studio and related services to the film and TV industries with 36 stages and 14 sound theatres, said their revenues for 2004 increased by 3% to £38.5M, with film activities accounting for 56% of the company’s turnover last year. TV and sound services had another satisfying year with revenues up 10.2% in 2004 to £10.7M.

Major film productions shot at the studios last year included Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, Batman Begins, King Arthur [+see also:
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, Harry Potter And The Gobblet of Fire, Sahara, and Bridget Jones: Edge of Reason [+see also:
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film profile
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. In total, the studios provided facilities to 21 feature films, 54 commercials and pop promos, 26 TV dramas or specials.
As part of the company’s enhancement plans - key to Pinewood Shepperton’s long-term growth strategy, Pinewood studios (20 miles West of London) just completed this March a new underwater filming stage (the U stage) of 20m length/10m wide and 6m deep while at Shepperton studios (15 miles north of London), new workshops of 8,000 sq were also delivered in March and a major complex of 62,000 sq of new production facilities will be ready for 2006.

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