The public TV station has agreed to sell its 4.5-acre studio lot on Sunset Boulevard to the Church of Scientology. The station will relocate within a year to a new production facility, Variety reports. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. "We are now implementing Phase Two of our transformation from a PBS affiliate to an independent public media center for the 21st century," KCET president Al Jerome said in announcing the sale. "New facilities and equipment will allow us to augment the quality, award-winning content that our fans love."
Here's a brief video glimpse of the historic Silver Lake-area studio:
* Releases now posted: KCET and Scientology both, after the jump.
Previously on LA Observed:
KCET in talks to sell studio to Scientology, Times says *
KCET will remain in full operation in the Los Angeles area and is in active discussions with several unidentified production facilities that will allow it to not only continue to produce award-winning shows but also to further expand its programming and digital footprint across multiple media platforms, according to KCET president and CEO Al Jerome.
“We are now implementing Phase Two of our transformation from a PBS affiliate to an independent public media center for the 21st century” said Jerome. “New facilities and equipment will allow us to augment the quality, award-winning content that our fans love.”
KCET offers programming in a wide array of genres including the arts, entertainment, cooking, nature and science, and childrens shows. In addition, KCET offers a strong line up of local and international news with BBC World News, BBC Newsnight, Al Jazeera English, NHK/Japan, IBA/Israel and SoCal Connected.
KCET will remain at its current location at 4401 West Sunset Boulevard for up to a year before moving into new facilities
The Church of Scientology:
This fully modern facility is just down Sunset Boulevard from our Los Angeles headquarters,within a few miles of the main offices of the Church's global humanitarian programs and but a few blocks away from our recording studio in Silver Lake.
The Church of Scientology is already well established in the audiovisual field with, as but one example, more than 400 videos presenting information about the religion, its beliefs and its social betterment and humanitarian programs, all of which can be seen at www.scientology.org.
This new studio is a turnkey setup that provides the Church the means to move into broadcasting for both the religion and its many social betterment and humanitarian programs. It is also ideally set up to establish a central media hub for our network of Churches around the world. Utilizing the studio's existing satellite uplink, we will be able to provide our Churches and affiliated groups globally with instantaneous access to a wealth of content, all in high definition, ranging from the Church's six annual international events to new educational and introductory films and even video updates for the public informational displays located in Churches around the world.
This new studio enables the Church to establish one of the most advanced centers used by religious broadcasters with the ability to harness 21st century broadcast technology and production power to deliver its message to the largest international audience possible.
Established in 1912, the KCET studio lot is the longest continuously-producing Hollywood studio. As such, the unique film and television heritage of this studio represents a legacy that the Church of Scientology is proud to carry forward. With a decades-long tradition of historical property preservation, especially in Hollywood, the Church intends to not only maintain but enhance the rich history of this venerable studio by fully and meticulously restoring the property's remarkable historical structures. We will now begin the planning phase for renovations and new equipment installations for the Church's unique use so that work can commence immediately upon KCET's move to their new facilities in the coming year.
The Church's existing state-of-the-art studio, Golden Era Productions -- located on 500 acres outside of Los Angeles with multiple sound stages, postproduction editing suites, numerous music and final mixdown studios and on-site film lab -- will continue to produce informational and educational films, while the new studio will concentrate on the production of television programs, short-form information films and Internet content to further Scientology's religious and charitable purposes.
This acquisition expands the Church's current audiovisual capabilities and enables us to move further into broadcast production, all close to our LA-based Scientology groups and organizations. We see this facility as a great expansion opportunity for the Church and are pleased we were able to acquire it.