Abu Dhabi looks to attract more Hollywood blockbusters with 'future-proof' studio

New twofour54 Studios will cover 40 hectares and comprise 11 soundstages, multipurpose sets and office spaces

Abu Dhabi's Midfield Terminal served as a key location in Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One. Photo: Paramount
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Twofour54 in Abu Dhabi has revealed plans for a 40-hectare studio facility that will be fully equipped to handle large productions as well as virtual and metaverse projects.

Called twofour54 Studios, it will be located in the extended area of Khalifa Industrial Zone Abu Dhabi. The facility will comprise 11 soundstages, six adaptable sets and a 3,000 square-metre water tank. It will also feature 7,000 square metres of office space and a host of other facilities equipped for film and TV production, post-production and screenings.

Designed to be “future-proof”, the studio comes as a response to growing demands in the filmmaking landscape in the UAE and wider region. It also aims to bolster Abu Dhabi’s appeal as a global production destination. Twofour54 Studios will complement the company’s flagship site at Yas Creative Hub, as well as its other production facilities across the capital.

“The creative industries have been identified as one of Abu Dhabi’s priority sectors given the important economic and social value they create,” said Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, managing director and chief executive of Adnec Group, twofour54’s parent company.

“We are proud to drive Abu Dhabi’s vision of becoming a leading global destination for content creation through twofour54 Studios. It will take film and TV production to the next level, creating jobs and contributing to the local economy following its completion in 2025.”

Mark Whitehead, chief executive of twofour54, said the facility comes as a response to the demand for “an integrated, future-ready production destination” in the region.

“Twofour54 has facilitated thousands of productions over the last 15 years, establishing a compelling track record and building a deep expertise of the global film industry’s demands,” he said.

“We remain steadfast in our mission to foster creativity, nurture talent and provide a world-class platform where visionaries can bring their cinematic dreams to life.”

Since twofour54 was launched in 2008, the media free zone has been pivotal in attracting international blockbusters to Abu Dhabi. Hollywood franchises including Mission: Impossible, Dune, Star Wars and Fast and Furious have all shot key scenes in the UAE capital, as have Bollywood hits Bharat and Tiger Zinda Hai.

Updated: August 01, 2023, 10:39 AM