NJEDA Board Designates New 1888 Studios in Bayonne as First Film-Lease Partner Facility

1888 Studios’ 1.5-million-square-foot development will feature 23 smart sound stages and production support space

TRENTON, N.J.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) Board today designated 1888 Studios in Bayonne, developed by Togus Urban Renewal, LLC, as a Film-Lease Partner Facility. The designation agreement, which commits the developer to occupying the facility for at least five years and grants future tenants eligibility to apply for increased tax credits for projects filmed at the facility under the Film and Digital Media Tax Credit program, marks a pivotal moment in New Jersey’s evolution as an emerging force in film and television production.

The increase in film studio development in New Jersey is a testament to the state’s best-in-the-region incentives and wealth of local talent, helping transition the Garden State into the northeastern capital of film and entertainment,” said Governor Phil Murphy. “The designation of 1888 Studios as a Film-Lease Partner Facility will open the door for more production companies to film in New Jersey, helping to support local small businesses and communities and create thousands of good-paying jobs.”

Governor Phil Murphy’s revival of New Jersey’s Film and Digital Media Tax Credit program has made the state a hub of film and media production, attracting hundreds of millions in revenue and creating thousands of good-paying jobs,” said NJEDA Chief Executive Officer Tim Sullivan.Today’s designation of 1888 Studios as a Film-Lease Partner Facility highlights how the state’s generous incentives, breadth of local talent, and diverse filming locations are attracting the development of world-class studio spaces, transforming regional economies.”

1888 Studios will stand as the largest and first campus style film and television studio facility in the Northeast and one of the largest in the nation, occupying 58 acres of land and 20 acres in the Newark Bay just miles from New York City. Designed by the leading architecture firm, Gensler, to evoke imagery of Golden Age Hollywood, the development will include 23 mega-powered smart sound stages ranging from 18,000 to 60,000 square feet with 40 to 50 foot-high ceilings, more than 350,000 square feet of production support space, outdoor backlot space, amenities, office spaces, mills, lighting and grip facilities, parking garage and storage. The development will also feature a waterfront park and promenade accessible to the public. 1888 Studios is expected to open in 2026.

We are honored Governor Murphy invited us to take part in fulfilling his ambitious vision to catapult New Jersey –– the birthplace of moviemaking and the home of the first film studio, Thomas Edison’s The Black Maria –– back onto the world stage, reclaiming its title as the premier destination for entertainment production. Without that vision and his administration’s relentless commitment to this industry, none of this would be possible,” said Arpad “Arki” Busson, Chairman of Togus Urban Renewal, the developer of 1888 Studios. “Receiving this first-of-its-kind designation for 1888 Studios is largely due to the unwavering support of Mayor Jimmy Davis of Bayonne. For years, he tirelessly worked to revitalize the city, culminating in the development of this state-of-the-art facility. Thanks to Tim Sullivan and the NJEDA, New Jersey offers a leading tax credit program and infrastructure that will ensure the state’s competitiveness for years to come.”

We are immensely proud to welcome 1888 Studios to our community and eagerly anticipate the diverse opportunities it will bring to Bayonne’s workforce. We are turning a new page in Bayonne’s history, one that promises to be as dynamic and inspiring as the films that will soon be produced right here in our city,” said Bayonne Mayor Jimmy Davis. “Today’s designation for 1888 Studios is a testament to the city’s commitment to fostering an environment where creative and technological industries can thrive.”

1888 Studios takes its name from the year Thomas Edison invented the motion picture camera in New Jersey, and the state continues to honor that legacy with studio partnerships that strengthen its standing as a hub of media production,” said New Jersey Motion Picture and Television Commission Executive Director Jon Crowley.As a Film-Lease Partner Facility, future tenants of 1888 Studios will have the opportunity to access some of the most competitive filming incentives in the nation, ensuring that the Garden State stays at the forefront of movie and television production.”

To be designated as a Film-Lease Partner, developers and operators must commit to occupying and operating studio developments in New Jersey for at least five years. Future tenants of a Film-Lease Partner Facility can receive increased tax credit awards for filming in New Jersey. The tax credit award increases if the designated facility’s tenant qualifies as a “film-lease production company”. To qualify, the production company must occupy space at designated film-lease partner facility, film at least 50 percent of the total project shoot days in New Jersey, and film at least 50 percent of the New Jersey shoot days at the designated facility.

The Film-Lease Partner designation is part of the Film and Digital Media Tax Credit program, which Governor Murphy reinstated in 2018, and has led to increased film and digital media production throughout the state. The program, which is funded through 2039, provides a tax credit of up to 40 percent of labor expenditures and up to 35 percent of qualified film production expenses, including a Diversity Tax Credit of up to four percent for productions that employ the services of women or people of color.

The program was expanded in 2021, increasing the annual allocation to $400 million and granting the NJEDA authority to designate eligible film studio developments as Film-Lease Partner Facilities.

For more information on the NJEDA’s suite of production support, visit www.njeda.gov/film/.

About the NJEDA

The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) serves as the State’s principal agency for driving economic growth. The NJEDA is committed to making New Jersey a national model for inclusive and sustainable economic development by focusing on key strategies to help build strong and dynamic communities, create good jobs for New Jersey residents, and provide pathways to a stronger and fairer economy. Through partnerships with a diverse range of stakeholders, the NJEDA creates and implements initiatives to enhance the economic vitality and quality of life in the State and strengthen New Jersey’s long-term economic competitiveness.

To learn more about NJEDA resources for businesses, call NJEDA Customer Care at 844-965-1125 or visit https://www.njeda.gov and follow @NewJerseyEDA on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.


New Jersey Economic Development Authority


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