Historical NFI Studio development at half-time
As an investment project by the National Film Institute, construction work on four new studios and service facilities is underway in Fót, as part of the largest state-funded studio development of all time. Within the framework of the development, increasing the capacity of the film production base in Fót five-fold one of Hungary’s largest film studios, with an area of 4,945 sqm and 18 meters internal height, will also be built. Currently the steel structures of the new studios are being built.
"As a significant economic factor, the Hungarian motion picture industry provides jobs for nearly 20 thousand professionals and brings serious benefits to the country, mainly in the form of foreign exchange revenue. With the rise of streaming content, film production spending has been steadily increasing in recent years, with preliminary aggregations suggesting that spending in 2022 will bring another 20% increase. The expansion of the Hungarian studio capacity provides a competitive economic advantage internationally, and also helps to carry out Hungarian productions produced with state support, redefining the nature of Hungarian National Film Institute’s public service activity” – pointed out Csaba Káel, government commissioner responsible for the development of the Hungarian motion picture industry and president of the Hungarian National Film Institute. Hungary has become Europe’s second biggest base of film production after London, with top producers and studios shooting in 2022 with the world’s biggest stars, such as Emma Stone, Mel Gibson, Hugh Laurie, Zendaya, Timothée Chalamet, Kate Winslet and Jude Law.
Within the framework of the government’s economic protection action plan the Fót production hub expansion aims to meet the growing studio demand of films produced in Hungary, a total of more than 300 productions per year, and to modernize the film production base in Fót, operating since the 70s, with the involvement of renewable energy sources.
Four new 2692 sqm soundstages will be built on 9890 sqm increasing total studio capacity to 12,670 sqm. In addition, the four new studios could be used in pairs as an almost 5000 sqm stage, thus allowing large-scale productions to run simultaneously.
A representative reception building will be built with a 40-seat projection room, and in addition to the new studios, the Fót establishment will be expanded with 3,000 sqm of office buildings, restaurants and a warehouse with a capacity of 7,300 sqm. In addition to new constructions, the investment will also include the renovation and improvement of existing buildings, as well as the modernization of the energy system, the internal roads and utility network.
The comprehensive development will make the studio complex in Fót a decisive element of film production both internationally and domestically, and its operating costs will become more economical. With the full development planned to be completed in the first half of 2024, construction work began last summer and is being implemented in several stages.
The unique NFI Studios complex is located on a 23 hectares plot in Fót and has long been a popular base for film production. NFI Sudios offers world-class medieval – and 19th century town, Western village, American suburb and backlots as well as Europe’s largest outdoor water tank which was used for filming Blade Runner 2049 and Terminator: Dark Fate recently. The giant tank (47m x 39m at a depth of 2m with an inner tank 20m x 15m at a depth of 5,5m) was especially designed for large and deep sets. Beside backlots and soundstages, NFI Studios are operating a wide range of sets and props, over 100 000 pieces of wardrobe, accessories, and a large inventory of weapons. The studios are on the outskirts of the Hungarian capital, 30 minutes’ drive from Liszt Ferenc Airport or 20 minutes from the city center.
In addition to countless Hungarian films, world-famous works have been filmed in Fót, such as The King, The Witcher, and The Last Kingdom. NFI Studio is currently hosting the filming of the large-scale Hunyadi series, Rise of the Raven.