Move Aside Hollywood, Treasure Island is Back for Filming

A 79,000 square foot space on Treasure Island is reopening for movie and TV production.

It looks like Los Angeles is going to have some competition.

The San Francisco Film Commission (Film SF) and Mayor London Breed announced Wednesday that Treasure Island is reopening a 79,000 square foot space for film production.

The space, dubbed “Film Treasure Island,” could potentially open up thousands of jobs for Bay Area locals across entertainment and construction. 

“Productions that are filmed here hire local crews and in turn spend locally on the goods and services that support our small business community,” Susannah Robbins, executive director of Film SF, said in a statement.

Production will take place at a building called Hangar 3, which is being leased from the Treasure Island Development Authority, a nonprofit city agency. Currently, the first project slated to use that space is Sony Pictures’ Fillmore (which IMDb alleges is Venom 2) in February. 

Treasure Island used to be host to a number of movies from the 1980s to the early 2000s. Iconic movies like Mrs. Doubtfire (1993), Bicentennial Man, and Rent used Hangar 3 to build sets for filming, according to the press release. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989) and The Parent Trap (1998) used Treasure Island’s Administration Building as a backdrop, the white, Moderne style building serving as a faux airport and hotel.

Hangar 3 is particularly suited for film production because of its massive square footage. At 300 feet long by 230 feet wide, with a ceiling height of up to 75 feet, and an additional 10,000 square feet for office space, it’s definitely an improvement find spaces within the city itself. Hangar 3 can “accommodate scenery for a feature film or television series that needs multiple standing sets or large-scale commercial Productions,” and is comparable to large stages in Los Angeles. 

Film Treasure Island is just the latest step San Francisco is taking to make the city a more film-friendly environment. Scene in San Francisco, a rebate program created in 2006, gives certain productions “a refund of all payroll tax and city fees up to $600,000 per production,” pending eligibility. Films like The Last Black Man in San Francisco (2019) have participated in the program.

Grace Li covers arts, culture, and food for SF Weekly. You can reach her at gli@sfweekly.com.

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