Pinewood Studios, one of the UK's major movie locations, seems to have become the latest victim of the Hollywood writers' strike.

The studio's owner Pinewood Shepperton has seen its share price fall by ten per cent after announcing that a "major film" contracted for its sound stages has shut down production.

Though contractual obligations prevented the movie being named, a spokesman for Pinewood Shepperton said the shutdown would result in a £3 million budget shortfall in 2008.

"Against the context of the current Writers' Guild strike and the uncertainty of the forthcoming negotiations of the Screen Actors Guild, while every effort will now be made to replace the revenues, this will prove challenging," a statement added.

While the spokesman confirmed that the "major film" forced to halt production was not the new James Bond film, one potential candidate is Angels and Demons, the Dan Brown adaptation whose predecessor The Da Vinci Code was filmed at Pinewood in 2005.

Hollywood writers have been on strike since November 4th, in a dispute with studios relating to royalty payments.

Though negotiations are set to resume on Monday, the effects of the industrial action are likely to be far-reaching, said Michael Gubbins, editor of trade paper Screen Daily.

"It's difficult to believe the disruption won't continue into next year," he told the BBC.

"It's a cliche perhaps, but it's true that when Hollywood coughs we all get a cold."

However the Pinewood spokesman said the cancellation will not affect funding for the studio's £200m planned expansion, Project Pinewood.

A 100-acre state-of-the-art site is planned to increase attract more production houses to the studios.


22/11/2007 15:45:49