NORTH LAWNDALE — The film studio where “Chicago Fire,” “Chicago PD,” “Chicago Med” and “The Chi” are filmed is being sold for $1.1 billion — and will stay in Chicago, according to published reports.
Cinespace Chicago Film Studios’ sprawling 60-acre campus is located on the West Side, with the main studios at 2621 W. 15th Place in North Lawndale. The studio has about 33 sound stages and recently announced it will add up to 19 more soundstages to its campus.
TPG Real Estate, a Texas- and California-based firm, bought the Chicago studio along with Cinespace Toronto for an estimated $1.1 billion, Deadline reports. Eoin Egan, who formerly worked as head of production services at Netflix, will be named Cinespace’s new COO, according to Deadline.
The acquisition is expected to accelerate the growth of Chicago’s thriving film industry and bring more production jobs to the area, said Avi Banyasz, co-head of TPG Real Estate.
“Consumer appetite for original content… has accelerated through the pandemic, leading to a dramatic increase in the demand to produce new films and television and in turn, a surge in the need for studio space,” Bantasz said.
The deal will also expand Cinespace’s social impact work in Chicago by growing the CineCares Foundation, the film studio’s nonprofit wing. CineCares creates pathways into the film industry for young people on the South and West Sides through job training, education and internships at Cinespace.
“Community has always been core to who we are,” said Alex Pissios, CEO of Cinespace. “TPG’s investment will expand these efforts and provide more jobs for Illinois.”
Mayor Lori Lightfoot commended the investment for the “jobs and productions” it will bring to the city.
“Chicago has a compelling, beautiful cityscape with so much potential. …I am thrilled to see this acquisition expand our capability for content creation,” Lightfoot said.
The combined Cinespace Chicago and Toronto film studios, founded by the Mirkopoulos and Pissios families, are the largest soundstage in the United States outside of Hollywood.
The Chicago studio opened in 2010. The Toronto studio launched in 1988.