New film studios break ground

Construction has begun on new State Government funded studios marking a significant milestone for Western Australia’s film and television industry.

Located on the southern boundary of Whiteman Park on Whadjuk Country, in Western Australia —— our design for the new studios focuses on restoring the site from its historic use for agriculture and cattle grazing.

Hassell Principal Peter Dean says the site provides access to historically themed facilities, surrounding bushland, and as a result, offers abundant opportunities for on-location filming.

The site sits in an area impacted by past use for agriculture and farming. Our strategy focuses on establish new landscaping to re-create the pre-agricultural condition which guides our design,” says Peter Dean.

Our overarching design goal is to create a precinct that’s distinctively Western Australian and embraces both local and international filmmakers to provide opportunities for local creative talent to thrive.”


Following consultation with the Traditional Owners, the architectural design is inspired by the Noongar translation of A (home) Karl (fire)” – a place of gathering and storytelling. The studio’s central spine reflects this and is created to be a place of gathering. It is set amongst a native landscape shaded by the distinctive red canopy which echoes Western Australia’s vibrant colour palette.

In acknowledgment of the site’s agricultural history, the design integrates functional forms and robust materials. A central breezeway, featuring integrated artwork and native landscaping, connects buildings, serving as a flexible space for movement and filming while providing shelter for film crews. Additionally, it shades the annex building, reducing thermal load, with plans for solar panels on the roof. 

The use of recycled materials for the backlot and consideration of rainwater harvesting for irrigation further emphasise sustainability. The studios include the following features:

  • Four soundstages
  • Two workshops
  • Five-acre backlot
  • Boneyard (a storage space for production items)
  • Offices, production office, screening room, and canteen

We have an exceptionally talented sector who are well-regarded globally but have historically had to venture elsewhere to work. The construction of this facility will ensure that we keep this talent here and will enable the state’s screen industry to compete on a global level, increasing the opportunities to attract larger national and internal film and TV projects.”

— Hon. David Templeman MLA, Minister for Culture and the Arts

The construction of the film studios is scheduled to be completed in 2026.

Imagery: WAX Architectural Visualization


April 15, 2024

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