Titanic Studios in Belfast Northern Ireland is the studio location where part of the scenes for HBO's hit TV series "Game Of Thrones" are being filmed. Plans to expand the now-famous location have been approved and the facility is expected to double in size once the expansion is complete.
Two new studio spaces and other film production facilities are expected to be added to the existing Titanic Studios which were once part of the Harland and Wolff shipyard. The building was known as "Paint Hall" and had previously served as a space where ship parts were painted before being brought to other parts of the shipyard for assembly. The space has since been repurposed and converted into film studios and parts of the massively successful "Game of Thrones" have been filmed there. The location proves convenient as many scenes from the series have been and are continuing to be filmed in outdoor locations in and around Belfast. Just last week, several scenes were shot in Portstewart Strand, a shoreline facing the Atlantic Ocean located on the Northern Irish coast.
The resulting expansion will put Belfast on the map in terms of international film production, making it the home of one of Europe's largest film production facilities. BBC reports that Environment Minister Mark H Durkan expressed his support for the project and confirmed the approval of the expansion plans.
"It is my aim to ensure planning creates a better environment and a stronger economy. This development helps to do this." said Durkan. The popularity of "Game of Thrones" has given rise to worldwide interest in the locations used in the series. Sightings of the cast members that have been spotted in and around Belfast have been constantly making news attracting fans to visit the area. Interest in the studios from other production outfits have also risen due to the success of the HBO series and tourism has been positively been affected in the area.
Apart from helping the local economy, environmental concerns about the presence of such a massive production studio in the docklands were raised. Mr. Durkan explained that a sustainable energy source such as solar panels are being considered in the expansion facility to make it beneficial both for the industry and the environment.