Fox Studios Australia is a movie studio in Sydney, occupying the site of the former Sydney Showground at Moore Park. The studio is owned by 21st Century Fox and was opened in May 1998. It is one of the three film studios in Australia, the others being Village Roadshow Studios and Docklands Studios Melbourne.
Occupying a 32-acre-site, and 15 minutes from the Sydney CBD, the movie studio features eight sound stages, several production offices, workshops and around 60 independent entertainment industry businesses.
The studio has been involved in the production of a number of blockbusters, including The Matrix, Moulin Rouge!, Mission: Impossible II, Star Wars Episodes II and III, and Superman Returns.
Prior to 1998, the Studio’s site was host to Sydney’s Royal Easter Show – the largest event held in Australia, and the sixth largest in the world. In 1881, the New South Wales Government provided land for the Royal Agricultural Society at Moore Park where the show was held for 116 years. From 1902 to 1919, the site expanded to the south and from 1920 – 1937, the Moore Park Showground expanded to the north. In 1998, the Show moved to a new showground and the former Sydney Showground at Moore Park became the home to Fox Studios Australia.
The area includes southern hemisphere‘s largest sound stage. The history of the site provides an eclectic mix of new and old buildings, and landscapes.
Located twenty minutes by foot from the Sydney city centre, the 132,000 square metre (32 acre) site includes eight stages, production offices and heavy industrial workshops, and a community of over 60 independent businesses. These businesses provide services such as equipment hire, travel and freight, casting, postproduction, and explosives/pyrotechnic factory, adjoining residential properties. Fox Lighting is Australia’s leading supplier for major motion film lighting.
Fox Studios Australia houses post-production specialists in film editing, sound re-recording and sound. Walking distance away is Trackdown’s 100 seat orchestral recording soundstage based at the neighbouring Entertainment Quarter.
Fox Studios Australia also has several facilities; including shops, cinemas, cafes, restaurants, parks, major sporting facilities and entertainment venues. Fox Studios Australia catering facilities opened in the area in 1998.
Backlot Theme Park
Fox Studios Backlot was a theme park that was purportedly based on Universal Studios Hollywood, Universal Studios Florida, and Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The $261 million park opened on 7 November 1999. It was closed at the end of 2001, the official reasons cited were the subsequent drop in domestic tourism caused by the collapse of Australian airline Ansett and the effect of the 11 September 2001 attacks in the United States in terms of international tourism.
An adjacent precinct provides restaurants and cafes, a retail complex, parklands, entertainment venues, and sporting facilities. The adjacent precinct was previously known as simply ‘Fox Studios Entertainment Precinct’, however has since been renamed ‘The Entertainment Quarter’ or EQ. When this area opened it was originally called ‘Bent Street’ and among its original tenants were Esprit, Sony, Hoyts, Sanity, and Dymocks.
Fox Studios Australia is owned by the media conglomerate 21st Century Fox, under the terms of a 99-year lease from the New South Wales State Government.
The decision by the Carr Government in 1995 to allow News Corporation, 21st Century Fox’ predecessor, to take over the site was controversial and attracted criticism from sections of the media such as The Sydney Morning Herald and independent MP Clover Moore. It was alleged that a secret deal took place between the NSW Government and the largest shareholder and Chairman/CEO of News Corporation, Mr Rupert Murdoch involving the donation of $25 million in taxpayers money for the new site
The studio has been involved in a number of movies and television shows including:
- Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie – 1994–1995
- Dark City – 1996–1997
- Babe: Pig in the City – 1998
- The Matrix – 1998
- Farscape – Series 1 – 1999
- Mission: Impossible II – 1999
- Holy Smoke! – 1999
- Moulin Rouge! – 1999–2000
- La Spagnola – 2000
- Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones – 2000–2002
- Kangaroo Jack – 2001
- The Quiet American – 2001
- The Matrix Reloaded – 2001–2002
- The Matrix Revolutions – 2001–2002
- The Night We Called It a Day – 2002
- Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith – 2003–2005
- Son of the Mask – 2004
- Stealth – 2004
- Superman Returns – 2005
- Australian Idol – 2007–2009
- Australia – 2008
- X-Men Origins: Wolverine – 2009
- Accidents Happen – 2009
- Tomorrow When the War Began – 2009
- The Barefoot Rugby League Show – 2010–2013
- The X Factor – 2010–present
- Minute To Win It – 2010
- Happy Feet Two – 2011
- The Voice Australia – 2012–present
- Young Talent Time – 2012
- Good News Week / Good News World – 2011
- The Great Gatsby – 2013
- The Wolverine – 2013
- A League of Their Own – 2013
- So You Think You Can Dance Australia – 2014
- Gods of Egypt – 2014
- Shark Tank – 2014
- Mad Max: Fury Road – 2015
- The Great Australian Spelling Bee – 2015
- Hacksaw Ridge – 2016