Suddenly 2010 has almost disappeared and Cape Town Film Studios was born getting off to a roaring start. The paint was hardly dry and the construction teams were still busy putting the final touches to the studios when the production team of Judge Dredd started moving in. Three months later and the filming of this iconic picture is in full swing, with more than 400 people working daily at the studios as part of crew, manufacturing and construction.

Cape Town Film Studios entrance
Judge Dredd, directed by Pete Travis (Vantage Point) produced by Andrew Macdonald, from DNA (Last King of Scotland, The Beach, Trainspotting ) and co-produced by Michael Murphey, from Kalahari Pictures (District 9), is the first 3D action film to be shot in South Africa and on the African continent. A film that is providing skills transfer on all levels and opened the door to 3D action filmmaking in South Africa, by South Africans. The international crew, including Oscar winning Director of Photography, Anthony Dod Mantle, (Slumdog Millionaire), Production Designer, Marco Digby (Slumdog Millionaire), and 3D lead Sterographer (a specialised 3D function), Vincent E. Toto and Lee Grumett, First AD (Sherlock Holmes), is backed up by leading South African crew like Emelia Weavind, Art Director, Brendon Smithers, Construction Manager, Rob Carlisle, Fabrication Supervisor, Max Poolman, SFX Supervisor and Rob Fischer, Key Grip, amongst others. Judge Dredd is filming two thirds of the production at the studio and is utilising almost the entire 17000sqm of production facilities completed in phase one.

With the help of production a 37 seater 3D grading cinema was created with a temporary digital lab and editing facilities. The ITC network has been completed, with fibre optic links between all buildings and high speed national and international connectivity allowing daily rushes to be transferred to Los Angeles and New York via Broadband. The 4 completed sound stages have been filled with sets from the film and the production facilities range from housing the stars in star rooms to wardrobe, make up, art department, casting, construction, fabrication, set dressing and all crew departments needed for the film. The studio is also used for backlot and is already proving to be the ideal campus for this kind of film creating superb workflow and work dynamics.

The Judge Dredd production helped studio management to iron out all typical snags resulting from a new building process. The shoot has reached its halfway mark without any major mishap and the studio is now ready to tackle any production in the future. Michael Murphey, in a recent interview with a local newspaper, called Cape Town Film Studios, the best studios he has ever worked in to date.

Please have a look at the website as well, where we are uploading the latest pictures of the exteriors. In the New Year, the website will be transformed into a studio operations website.

The Studio and production are closing its doors on the 21st of December for a break and will reopen on the 3rd of January. Ross Rayners, Studio Production Manager, will be on duty 24/7 and can be reached on the office number during this time (please see contact details on our website: www.capetownfilmstudios.co.za).

On behalf of the Board of Directors and Studio Management, I thank you for having been so supportive over this last year. Please forgive us for having been so quiet, but we were busy building and completing South Africa’s and Africa’s first Film Studio Complex of its kind. We wish you a happy festive season and a very prosperous 2011. I look forward to seeing and hearing back from you in the New Year.

Season’s Greetings
Nico Dekker

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