How Studio Spaces Survived the Pandemic and Pivoted to Meet Pent-Up Demand

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“There’s going to be such a line out the door after the pandemic,” Alton Butler, CEO of production rental company, Line 204, says

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"Girls5eva" moved into the Kaufman Astoria studio being used by "Tommy" when "Tommy" was canceled Photo: NBC Peacock/CBS

Los Angeles’ TV and movie production spaces faced multiple shutdowns during the pandemic, but owners and managers say tenants have hung onto sound stages and even extended leases to guarantee they have a place to resume work during a streaming-fueled production boom. Alton Butler, CEO of studio and production rental company, Line 204, said pent-up demand, as well as the exponential growth of streaming services hungry for original content, led producers of ongoing TV series or delayed new projects to maintain studio occupancy during the downtime so they’d be able to ramp up quickly when the industry reopened. The hope for a rebound kept many studios solvent during shutdowns, in some cases pivoting to using the spaces for set construction in preparation for the next production.


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