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Welcome to this site about movie studio history, particularly focussing on Universal Studios Hollywood

The locations where movies are made have evolved along with the technology used to make them. The first stages were simply raised platforms. These were then enclosed with glass roofs to allow sunlight to provide the illumination. When electric light sources improved efficiency (and became more available as power networks were set up), the stages became dark, to allow total control of lighting. When sound recording arrived, the stages added layers of soundproofing, and became soundstages.
Studio properties with large outdoor ‘backlot’ areas were favoured – a large proportion of most movies was still shot outdoors. As technology improved, shooting took place on location more and more. As time went on, specialised movie studios were less and less necessary for actual shooting, so they concentrated on becoming one-stop-shops for the whole production process, from initial concepts and writing through to post-production sound recording and effects.
Eventually, almost anywhere could be used as a movie studio, and production in the large custom-built studios reduced. This site aims to gather information about studios throughout movie-making history. We’re always grateful for your input, so please contact us with any additional information.

This site is currently under development as information and photos are transferred across from our old site. The full site will be fully launched by the end of 2022.

Open for Tours

The following studios and locations offer regular tours to the public, or are open access.

Big Sky Movie Ranch [California, USA]
Fox Ranch, Malibu Creek State Park [California, USA]
Old Tucson Studios [Arizona, USA]
Paramount Ranch [California, USA]
Paramount Studios [California, USA]
Sony Pictures Studios [California, USA]
Universal Studios Hollywood [California, USA]
Universal Studios Orlando [Florida, USA]
Warner Bros Studios [California, USA]
UK & Ireland
Leavesden Studios [England, UK]
Linen Mills Studios [Banbridge, Northern Ireland]
Europe / Africa / India / China / Hong Kong
Atlas Corporation Studios, Morocco [Ouarzazate, Morocco]
Babelsberg Film Studios [Potsdam-Babelsberg, Germany]
Bavaria Filmstudios [Munich, Germany]
Cinecitta Studios [Rome, Italy]
MMC Studios, Cologne [Germany]
Ramoji Film City [Hyderabad, India]
Closed Set

There is no public access or tours at these studios.

Albequerque Studios, New Mexico [New Mexico, USA]
CBS Studio Center [California, USA]
CBS Television City [California, USA]
Charlie Chaplin Studios [California, USA]
Culver Studios [California, USA]
Disney Studios [California, USA]
EUE Screen Gems Studios [Atlanta, Georgia, USA]
Fox Studios [California, USA]
Grumman Studios [New York, USA]
Los Angeles Center Studios [California, USA]
Melody Ranch [California, USA]
Palmdale Airport [California, USA]
Pinewood Atlanta Studios [Georgia, USA]
Prospect Studios [California, USA]
Steiner Studios [New York, USA]
Sunset Bronson Studios [California, USA]
Sunset Las Palmas Studios [California, USA]
The Lot / Warner Hollywood Studios [California, USA]
Warner Ranch [California, USA]
Aja Tan Studios [North Vancouver, BC, Canada]
Cinespace Film Studios [Toronto, ON, Canada]
North Shore Studios [North Vancouver, Canada]
Pinewood Toronto Studios [Toronto, Canada]
Baja Film Studios [Baja California, Mexico, USA]
Churubusco Studios [Mexico City, Mexico]
UK & Ireland
3 Mills Studio [London, England, UK]
Ardmore Studios [Ireland]
BBC Elstree Centre [London, England, UK]
Beaconsfield Film Studios [Beaconsfield, England]
Black Hangar Studios [London, England, UK]
Bray Studios [England, UK]
Bushey Studios [Hertfordshire, England]
Cardington Airship Sheds [England, UK]
Ealing Studios [London, England, UK]
Elstree Studios [London, England, UK]
Gainsborough Studios [London, England]
Pinewood Studios [England, UK]
Shepperton Studios [England, UK]
Twickenham Film Studios [London, England, UK]
West London Film Studios [London, England]
Wimbledon Studios [London, England, UK]
Europe / Africa / India / China / Hong Kong
Alvernia Studios [Krakow, Poland]
Barrandov Studios [Prague, Czech Republic]
Camperdown Studios [Wellington, New Zealand]
Stone Street Studios [New Zealand]
Extinct Studios

These studios no longer exist.

Downey Studios [California, USA]
Hal Roach Studios [California, USA]
Ray-Art Studios [California, USA]
RKO Encino [California, USA]
UK & Ireland
Alexandra Palace [London, England, UK]
Cricklewood Film Studios [London, England, UK]
Denham Studios [London, England, UK]
Lime Grove Studios [London, England, UK]
Merton Park Studios [London, England, UK]
Wembley Park Studios [London, England, UK]

See also Behind the Camera