Netflix adds stages to New Mexico production hub as part of major expansion project

Netflix has expanded its New Mexico production facility to include four new soundstages, in a move that increases the streaming giant’s robust presence in the state with its film and television productions.

In addition to the stages, the expansion encompasses three mills, a production office, two stage support buildings and two backlot spaces spanning 108 acres on the property near Albuquerque, the streaming giant announced Thursday.

The Los Gatos, Calif.-based entertainment company acquired what was then known as ABQ Studios in 2018 and has shot several films and TV series in the region, such as supernatural thriller “Stranger Things” and gritty western “The Harder They Fall.” A representative for Netflix declined to comment on the cost of the new additions.

Thursday’s grand opening is part of a larger expansion project by Netflix. In 2020, the streamer unveiled plans to grow its New Mexico campus to include 10 new stages, postproduction facilities, offices, mills, backlots and other infrastructure.

“New Mexico has proven to be an exceptional production hub for us,” Ted Sarandos, co-chief executive of Netflix, said in a statement. “It offers a rich tapestry of landscapes, a talented workforce, and a supportive community. … Our continued investment in this region underscores our commitment to the local community and New Mexico’s vibrant cultural and economic landscape.”

The streamer isn’t the only entertainment company that has used the facilities at what is now Netflix Albuquerque Studios. Before the company took over, non-Netflix productions filmed at least partially on the Mesa del Sol lot include Disney’s “The Avengers”; Lionsgate’s “Sicario”; and AMC Networks’ “Breaking Bad,” produced by Sony Television.

Productions have been flocking to New Mexico in recent years to take advantage of its tax incentive program. Film and TV tax credits in the state range from 25% to 40% of direct production and postproduction costs. In part because of generous tax incentives offered in New Mexico, Georgia and other filming hot spots, Los Angeles continues to contend with the threat of runaway production.

Netflix alone has invested nearly $575 million in New Mexico productions and hired more than 4,000 local cast and crew members since purchasing ABQ Studios, the company said. New Mexico-based shoots for the company have included “Stranger Things,” “The Harder They Fall,” “Army of the Dead” and “El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie.”

While introducing the latest Albuquerque Studios expansion on Thursday, Netflix teased three upcoming projects shooting at the facility: western romance “Ransom Canyon,” medical procedural “Pulse” and supernatural series “The Boroughs.”

The streamer also pledged its “commitment to sustainability,” noting that the revamp incorporates solar and battery-storage systems, geothermal heating and cooling, electric appliances and 50 electric vehicle chargers.

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