George Lucas’s Industrial Light & Magic Set To Open Sydney Studio

In news that will delight Star Wars fans and film industry recruits alike, Lucasfilm’s visual effects  division will be setting up a base at Fox Studios Australia in Sydney’s Moore Park. 

George Lucas with Storm Troopers. Photo Credit: BBC

The world’s most well-known visual effects company Industrial Light & Magic, behind the immensely successful film series Star Wars and The Avengers, is set to begin operations at an Australian location.

Planned to open later in the year, ILM will be expanding its influence at Sydney’s Fox Studios, a movie studio famous for its involvement in the production of a number of blockbusters including Moulin Rouge!, The Matrix, Mission Impossible 2 and the Lucas-directed Star Wars Episodes II and III.

With any luck the opening will come in time for its workers to start on the upcoming film Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, scheduled for its release on December 20.

This new addition to the local film scene could serve as a real boon for workers in the industry, with executive creative director Rob Bredow stating that he aims to have between 50-100 Sydney employees by the end of 2019, with additional growth next year that is reported to be up to 500 local jobs.

“Sydney is an ideal location for our fifth studio,” says Bredow. “There is abundant artistic and technical talent in the region, which are both keys to ILM’s culture of innovation.”

A 10% tax subsidy seems to have clinched the deal, on top of Commonwealth incentives which combined could represent up to a 40% rebate for the company, which in recent years has become the world’s most popular and celebrated visual effects company.

A division of Disney, this will be the fifth office expansion for ILM, which also has studios in London, Singapore, San Francisco and Vancouver, connecting Sydney to a worldwide network of film industry specialists.

This news coincides with reports that additional reshoots are underway for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, with locations in the UK closed off to the public for reshoots and pickups. An X-wing fighter is reportedly part of these additional shoots, with notice that the they may continue into September.

In addition to Rise of Skywalker, films in the works at Industrial Light & Magic include Dark Fate, The Irishman and Terminator: Dark Fate.

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