Victoria has secured its biggest ever screen production with the epic new TV series Metropolis, based on the Fritz Lang classic.
The eight-part series will create around 4000 local jobs and is the first in a pipeline of projects from NBCUniversal that is set to inject $416 million into the Victorian economy.
The Victorian Government is supporting the production as part of its Victorian Screen Incentive initiative, with the Commonwealth Government also supporting through its Location Incentive program.
In addition, the Victorian Government has provided $12.5 million to deliver cutting-edge new virtual production infrastructure at Docklands Studios Melbourne, with a $5 million contribution from the Commonwealth Government for skills and training.
The infrastructure will include one of the largest permanent ‘LED volumes” – high-tech digital screens that can display realistic background environments and visual effects – allowing imagined and real destinations to be filmed on stage. This technology was used to bring worlds to life in the ground-breaking Star Wars series, The Mandalorian.
The virtual production workforce training program on Metropolis will place a number of paid trainees with visual effects houses, games developers and other companies engaged in virtual production workflow. Universal Studio Group and Matchbox Pictures will also establish a partnership with the Victorian College of the Arts that will enable students to develop technical skills in virtual production.
This virtual production infrastructure, coupled with the recent completion of Sound Stage 6 at Docklands Studios Melbourne – which was designed to support larger-scale international productions – substantially advances both Victoria’s and Australia’s strategic position as a leading screen production destination.
Produced by UCP, a division of Universal Studio Group and Esmail Corp., Metropolis will be written and directed by Sam Esmail, who also serves as showrunner on the series, and filmed in Victoria.
It is estimated that the pipeline of projects supported by the Location Incentive and the Victorian Screen Incentive could contribute up to $621 million in direct spend across a five-year production period to 2027.