The Voice is the latest television production to confirm a new studio home for 2020 due to a lack of available spaces.
Producers ITV Studios Australia will fit out a new studio home in Sydney which can also be leased out to other production companies.
CEO David Mott told TV Tonight, “ITV Studios Australia is creating a bespoke studio. We are creating a new studio facility in Sydney.
“Essentially, FOX Studios Australia has basically shut the TV industry out. Frankly, it’s very disappointing given that we have an extensive lease.
“We were advised a little while ago that Disney was coming in and taking over FOX Studios and Marvel have taken all the sound stages. So that has shut out all TV production at FOX Studios.”
Sydney’s biggest TV productions are out of FOX Studios for up to 2 years. Dancing with the Stars has already confirmed a move to Melbourne, while The Masked Singer is also heading south.
This has created a knock-on effect for many of Australia’s biggest shows.
“The fact is that Sydney does not have other ready-made studios to the size and configuration that we require for The Voice. It is the biggest show on television and the most complicated show on TV in terms of its requirements. So it did set us a challenge. But I have an incredible team at ITV and we’ve been working through it and looking at all sorts of sites.”
Mott is keeping his cards close to his chest as to where the new space is located.
“I’m not yet prepared to announce the location because the ink’s not dry. It’s quite an intricate process to go through.
“I’ve looked at old Bunnings warehouses, I looked at building a location.
“But I have found an exceptional location -essentially a warehouse that we are converting into a massive, working studio.
“We were even looking at taking The Voice elsewhere. But we didn’t want to do that. For the coaches and for the broadcaster, it made sense for us to remain in Sydney. There are other productions that have gone to Queensland, but there’s also capacity levels there as well.”
Hamish Turner, Nine Program Director, also confirmed the need to keep The Voice local, including for the coaches who enjoy spending extensive time at their favourite Sydney haunts.
“They love coming out because they get to stay in Bondi or near the beach. Kelly Rowland’s kids, the Boy George posse are coming out and that’s one of the big drawcards,” he explained.
“There’s a lot of people needing a space. If I had a spare $20 million I’d build a studio right now!”
Hinting at a multi-purpose facility, Mott is also signalling its availability for other production companies.
“We are open to business and already we have had interest from other production companies in using this location, because of the very same reasons that we had to look at the The Voice,” he said.
“It has the ability to scale up and scale back. In fact, this facility that we will announce early in the New Year could probably fit three productions in there at once.”