2008-10-22 / Front Page

New Soundstage For KAS

Photo Jasmine Hibbitt Wielding ceremonial shovels at the groundbreaking for Kaufman Astoria Studios' Stage K, a $20 million, 40,000-square-foot studio facility on Monday, October 20 were (l. to r. ): Former City Council Speaker Peter Vallone Sr. , Borough President Helen Marshall, Deputy Mayor for Economic Development Robert Lieber, Assemblymember Michael Gianaris, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, "Sesame Street" cast member Elmo, Kaufman Astoria Studios President Hal Rosenbluth, George Kaufman, developer of the studio, Patricia Kaufman, executive director, Governor's Office for Motion Picture and Television Development, Katherine Oliver, commissioner, Mayor's Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting, and Seth Pinsky, New York City Economic Development Corporation president. Photo Jasmine Hibbitt Wielding ceremonial shovels at the groundbreaking for Kaufman Astoria Studios' Stage K, a $20 million, 40,000-square-foot studio facility on Monday, October 20 were (l. to r. ): Former City Council Speaker Peter Vallone Sr. , Borough President Helen Marshall, Deputy Mayor for Economic Development Robert Lieber, Assemblymember Michael Gianaris, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, "Sesame Street" cast member Elmo, Kaufman Astoria Studios President Hal Rosenbluth, George Kaufman, developer of the studio, Patricia Kaufman, executive director, Governor's Office for Motion Picture and Television Development, Katherine Oliver, commissioner, Mayor's Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting, and Seth Pinsky, New York City Economic Development Corporation president. Officials of Kaufman Astoria Studios (KAS) in Long Island City on Monday joined with Mayor Michael Bloomberg, elected officials and cast members of several television shows in celebrating the groundbreaking for Stage K, a $20 million, 40,000-square-foot studio facility funded by local partners that include New York City Economic Development Corporation (EDC), New York State Empire State Development Corporation (ESDC) and Signature Bank.

Bloomberg and Borough President Helen M. Marshall, Deputy Mayor for Economic Development Robert C. Lieber, New York City Economic Development Corporation President Seth Pinsky, New York State Empire State Development Corporation CEO Marisa Lago, Commissioner Katherine Oliver of the Mayor's Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting, Patricia Kaufman, executive director, Governor's Office for Motion Picture and Television Development, Assemblymember Michael Gianaris, City Councilmember Eric Gioia and local Community Board 1 members, along with the cast members of ABC's new show "Life on Mars", the cast members of Showtime's new show "Nurse Jackie", WFAN Radio Senior Vice President and General Manager Don Bouloukus, WFAN Radio Vice President and Sports Programmer Mark Chernoff, and in a special guest appearance, Elmo of "Sesame Street", were on hand to participate in the historic groundbreaking on Monday, October 20 at 11 a. m. on 36th Street, between 34th and 35th Avenues; across the street from the historic Kaufman Astoria Studios.

"New York's film industry is a bright spot of success during the current economic downturn. Kaufman Astoria Studios' expansion is a testament to the success of our film tax credit, which is the single most successful economic development program in recent history," Assemblymember Michael Gianaris (D-Astoria/Long Island City) said. Gianaris has strenuously fostered the growth of New York's film industry and is a leader in establishing a tax credit for filming, film production and postproduction in New York.

Kaufman Astoria Studios (KAS), the largest, most experienced, comprehensive film and television facility in New York City, features six studios, including a 26,040-square-foot stage, KAS Music & Sound, K/A/S Lighting and WFAN, all under one roof. Since opening its doors in 1920, KAS has been the site of such noted movie and television productions as "Angels In America", "Bourne Ultimatum" and "The Cosby Show", and is the long-time home of the children's favorite, "Sesame Street". The soon to be released movie "Pelham: 123" has recently finished filming at the studio as well. ABC's new show, "Life on Mars", and Showtime's new show, "Nurse Jackie", are currently filming at KAS. The nationally landmarked studio will continue to transform Astoria into a dynamic entertainment destination with its latest expansion, the new 40,000-square-foot stage facility. With more than 85 years of experience, KAS offers the expertise, equipment and environment to create first-class productions. For more information, visit www. kaufmanastoria. com.

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