According to WFAA, the development, called Super Studios, aims to attract streaming services not only by supplying space and equipment for big-budget film and TV show productions but also by providing cast and crew members with a mini-city complete with restaurants, hotels, coffee shops and retail space.
“It’s like a mini city, which is something that is attractive when you’re not in the Hollywood area,” Angel Gracia, CEO of Concrete Visions, the company behind the project, told The Dallas Morning News. “Filmmakers want to have things nearby they can quickly use.”
García is a lifelong filmmaker and director based in Portland who spotted a niche in the film industry — high-end soundstages to meet the increasing stream services demand. According to The Hollywood Reporter, a soundstage boom that followed the COVID-19 pandemic saturated the Los Angeles production companies that can’t keep up with the demand of streaming services like Netflix that lease production facilities for multiple years.
In addition to Manfield’s film studio, which will have five studio clusters, each with its own sound stages and mill space, García is moving forward with a similar 45-acre development in Banning, California with four studio clusters. Unlike Mansfield’s studio, Banning’s won’t include surrounding hotels, restaurants and retail.
After discussing the project with several cities in North Texas, Mansfield came up with the best proposal for the development. “They were not only understanding about it, they gave us the best place to do it with the best conditions and the best location,” Gracia said.
This could mean a big opportunity for the city, which has been looking for ways to bring office space and diverse industries, given that more than 90% of Mansfield’s population works outside the city. The project has a starting cost of $70 million and is expected to create 2,000 jobs without counting construction jobs.
According to García, on average, the lowest-paid crew member on a film set would make between $1,800 and $5,000 a week. “Most of our young students, when they graduate high school, they leave the city and they can’t afford to come back,” said Jason Moore, executive director of the Mansfield Economic Development Corp. “So this provides some job opportunities that could keep them here, keep them local in Mansfield. That’s what we’re most excited about.”
The city expects to break ground on Mansfield Super Studios in 2023.