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Disney plans moves to Pinewood Studios
THE Walt Disney company has confirmed that it is looking to move into a permanent base at Pinewood Studios in Iver Heath.
The film-making giant is currently negotiating a move to take over offices and sound stages at the site in Pinewood Road.
A spokesman for Disney said: "Walt Disney Studios is looking to enter into a long-term lease arrangement with Pinewood Studios."
It is intended that instead of paying to film individual productions at Pinewood Studios as it currently does, the Walt Disney company will have a lease on sound stages there and staff will move into office space at the site.
Disney has increasingly used the site in recent years, with blockbusters such as Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Snow White and the Huntsman and the Angelina Jolie starring Maleficent all being filmed there.
The news comes as Pinewood prepares to launch a planning application to expand its site, following the decision earlier this year by communities secretary Eric Pickles to reject plans for the Project Pinewood development, which would have seen homes doubling as permanent film sets being built on Green Belt land.
The move from Disney is expected to be worth around £5m to Pinewood Studios, and will be a boost after the studios lost money last year due to spending on the Project Pinewood development.
A spokesman for Pinewood Studios said: "Unfortunately this not something that we can comment on at the moment.
"We do not currently have any announcement to make on this issue."
People living close to the studios say that they are happy that Pinewood is getting a boost.
Michael Jenkins, 60, of Ashford Road, who attended last year's public inquiry into the Project Pinewood plans and was against that development, said: "Anything that is going to help Pinewood and bring money into it and to this area is a good thing.
"I just hope that it doesn't lead to them saying that they are full up and need to expand into the Green Belt, because people here will not accept that."
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