Green Light for Scottish Film and TV Studio

Pictured: Bob Last and Jason Connery. Picture by: Stewart Attwood.

In a significant development for Scotland’s Screen sector, Screen Scotland today announced that First Stage Studios Ltd, led by Oscar-nominated and BAFTA winning film and television producer Bob Last and actor and director Jason Connery, has been appointed to run a large-scale film and TV studio space in Edinburgh’s Port of Leith.

The studio space in Edinburgh has already hosted major international productions, including Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War.

Its scale complements the range of studio facilities and flexible build spaces available across the country.

It will benefit both the indigenous sector and Scotland’s ability to attract high value international productions that work with the local sector.

Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Fair Work and Culture, said:

“This announcement represents a great step forward in Scotland’s ambition to drive growth across all aspects of the film and TV sector.

“Having a studio of this scale will provide a home in Scotland for film and high-end TV productions, generate significant revenue for Scotland’s wider economy and support sustainable careers across the film and TV industry from writers, producers and directors to those working in craft and technical areas.”

Screen Scotland’s Executive Director Isabel Davis commented:

“The studio is key in expanding film and TV production in Scotland.

“We’re delighted to be working with First Stage Studios to bring it to life. 

‘Bob and Jason bring a wealth of expertise and industry knowledge that is invaluable to the development of the studio.

“Scotland is internationally renowned for its world-class talent, crews, facilities and breath-taking locations, this facility means we can raise the visibility of Scotland on screen, anchor more film and high-end television productions in Scotland and capitalise on the global boom in the industry.”

Bob Last of First Stage Studios Ltd commented:

“We look forward to building on the strong interest already expressed by international and UK customers.

“We are grateful to Screen Scotland for their commitment to an ambitious film and television sector and look forward to contributing to its development.”

Jason Connery of First Stage Studios commented:

“There is no question Scotland needs a film studio, I could not be more excited to be involved in bringing it to fruition”

Iain Smith, Producer and Chair of the British Film Commission said:

“I am delighted by today’s news of this appointment of a Scottish company to run this major studio facility in the heart of Edinburgh.

“It will bring massive benefits not only to the local screen sector, but also to the wider economy further bolstering the UK studio offer.

“The UK’s screen industries are enjoying exceptional growth and it is crucial that Scotland continues to play its part in this by continuing to develop a world-class infrastructure, invest in skills development and provide as much studio space as will enable Scotland to compete more effectively for this valuable inward investment business.”

Cllr Adam McVey, City of Edinburgh Council Leader commented:

“This is a very exciting boost for the creative industries in the capital and the Council is delighted to have been involved in this project throughout.

“With strong links to the film industry already – which is testament to the efforts of Film Edinburgh, our city’s film-friendly approach and annual international film festival – it’s fantastic that First Stage Studios Ltd will be running an internationally competitive studio in Leith.

“There will be even more benefits to the City when large scale filming takes place, bringing great economic benefits to Leith and our whole City.”

Stuart Wallace, Chief Operating Officer, Forth Ports said:

“Everyone at Forth Ports is thrilled to be welcoming First Stage Studios to the Port of Leith. This is great news for Scotland’s film industry and for Scottish film buffs.

“Our ‘blue shed’ has proved popular with the creative industry in the past with Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War using Leith as a studio space for their film production.

“We look forward to working with First Stage Studios and we wish them every success with this.”