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New Film Studio Promises To Bring Jobs, Business To Yonkers

YONKERS, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) -- A new film studio has opened in Yonkers, and the company in charge of the project says it'll be the largest of its kind in the entire Northeast.

CBS2's Nick Caloway got an inside look at Lionsgate Studios Yonkers.

Yonkers, as they say, is hitting its mark as the massive film studio opened in the heart of downtown.

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Lionsgate Studios Yonkers (Credit: CBS2)

The campus was created by Great Point Studios. Robert Halmi, its president and CEO, said the studio will be hands-down the largest in the region.

"There are lots of stages in Los Angeles and Atlanta and London, but not, surprisingly, not very many large stages in the Northeast," he said.

Currently, there are three soundstages open and prepping for production, totaling half a million square feet, and the studio will double in size over the next 18 months with a $500 million expansion underway.

By the end of 2023, the facility will cover 20 acres and will house 11 large soundstages measuring about 20,000 square feet.

The Starz television series "Run the World" will be filmed at the studios starting in March with many others to follow.

There's a skyrocketing demand for large production spaces, fueled in part by the popularity of big-budget, binge-worthy streaming shows.

"You didn't need such large stages five years ago, so it's sort of a phenomenon based on what Amazon and Netflix and Disney and Starz are producing. You know, without these large stages, you can't make these large shows," Halmi said.

The project is a dream come true for Mayor Mike Spano, who wants to make Yonkers the "Burbank of New York."

After the expansion, the studio could create around 3,000 fulltime jobs, including 350 local hires.

"That's going to have an impact. People here are going to get these jobs. The revenues that come to the city will help improve the quality of life," Spano said.

On the property that once was the Otis Elevator Factory, it will soon be stars rising in Yonkers.

The city of Yonkers says more than $2 million in tax exemptions were given to Great point Studios to attract the facility to Yonkers, but the studio says it will bring hundreds of millions of dollars in taxable revenue to the city.

CBS2's Nick Caloway contributed to this report.

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