Lights, Camera, Action! The Walt Disney Co. was officially given the greenlight by county lawmakers last week to build a new studio lot near Santa Clarita, the third largest city in Los Angeles County.
Disney/ABC Studios at The Ranch—as it will be called—will consist of up to 12 soundstages, offices, bungalows, a commissary and parking across nearly 60 sprawling acres, making it one of the largest new studio developments in more than a decade.
Located on a portion of Disney’s 846-acre Golden Oak Ranch property, the new studios will share the same backdrop where such classics as “Old Yeller” and “The Shaggy Dog” were filmed in the late 1950s. In order to convert the wide open greenspaces to a studio lot, county planners had to outweigh the benefits against the disadvantages for the surrounding community, eventually coming to a 4-0 vote to officially approve the plan.
Overriding any negative outcomes was the projected boost to local employment, which will create 2,900 jobs and generate about $533 million in economic activity, as estimated by supporters.
“It also reflects a substantial commitment to its real estate holdings, even as other states offer generous incentives in competing for production,” noted Variety. Although Southern California proudly wears the crown of “entertainment capital of the world,” cities like Austin and New York City have proven to be major competitors in the industry, making this decision an important win for moviemakers in L.A.