Written by Murray Ashton on Sep 5, 2012. Posted in Interviews

Filming on location at Universal Studios

Jeff Berry is Executive Director of Production Services and Virtual Effects at Universal Studios in California. He oversees the rental of sound stages and back lot locations for Universal, as well as the production services representative team that co-ordinates with the individual clients.

What can you say about the Universal back lot as a film and TV location?

Universal is an incredibly versatile shooting location. We have 30 sound stages ranging from 6,000 sq ft to 30,000 sq ft. The entire lot is 391 acres of shooting location including office buildings, sound stages, parking lots, fields, lakes and woods. In addition Set Lighting, Grip, Property, Costume and Transportation departments are on site ready to support productions. Beyond that, Universal has specialty shops like Wood Moulding, Staff, Drapery, Graphic Design & Sign and Greens to provide a deep level of service on and off lot.

On the post-production side, Universal Studios Post Production Media Services offers complete post sound services including sound mixing and sound editorial design along with Picture Editorial and Avid Rentals and the EFILM ® and Company ® DI Suite. Universal Studios Digital Services provides colour correction, editing, duplication, encoding, digital effects compositing and more. Both facilities are on the lot ready to help internal and third party clients.

How many locations are there?

There are over 30 back lot locations. We have a New York Street (including Wall Street, Broadway Theater District, Brownstone, West Village and Modern), a Courthouse Square, a European Street, a Mexican Street, suburban streets, a Western Street, train stations, churches, gas stations, baseball field, a waterfall and more.

Which of these locations are the most popular?

New York Street is our premier shooting location. Within a well-designed, compact space, a show can cover Wall Street to Little Italy without a costly company move. The location is very adaptable to a director’s vision.

Do you have any special facilities that are worth a special mention?

One exciting new service we have bridges pre-production, production and post-production. Universal Virtual Stage 1 (UVS1) is a dedicated, pre-rigged, pre-calibrated virtual production environment with motion capture, camera tracking, pre-visualisation and related technologies. The facility includes a green screen cyc, two editing bays with 60 terabytes of online storage and production office space.

What special film-friendly facilities do you have that our audience would be interested in knowing about?

Parking, dressing rooms, conference rooms and rehearsal rooms to name a few.

What does it cost to use your locations?

We tailor the production package to the individual show’s budget and make very cost-effective deals by grouping production services into the overall agreement. We want our clients to meet their budget and meet their schedule.

Thank you

To find out more about Universal please click here.


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