[PHOTO AT LEFT - President Arroyo ponders her response to a journalist’s question during a forum organized by the Philippine College of Rotary Governors at the Holiday Inn Hotel at Clark Field in Pampanga yesterday. Photo By WILLY PEREZ]

CLARK FIELD, PAMPANGA, February 11, 2006, (STAR) President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo announced today the signing of a $2 million new joint venture between CyberCity Teleservices – Philippines, Inc. (CCT) and Shogee Studios to outsource a Hollywood-class studio services for the global film-making industry.

The President made the announcement of CCT’s expansion program in the country during an informal interaction this afternoon at the Holiday Inn Resort Hotel here.

To be known as the Clark Shogee Studio, the facility will be established in a 40-hectare land inside the Clark Special Economic Zone here. In three to five years, the project is also expected to become a major tourism destination similar to California’s Universal Studio.

The $2 million investment on the Computer Generated Imaging (CGI) and Visual Effects venture is projected to reach $10 million for the three-phase expansion project to build a globally competitive film-making studio in the Philippines.

The Hollywood-style studios will have 2D and 3D animation capabilities and full pre-production and post-production capabilities.

The President said the joint venture is an answer to the Filipino movie industry’s yearning for a studio to cater to small film producers.

"This is part of the Business Process Outsourcing, so they will have a studio that will provide not only a sound stage and ordinary laboratory facility for ordinary movies but also for special effects," the President said.

Shogee president Charles Lawrence and CCT chairman Jonathan Rosenberg signed the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) on the joint venture, she said.

Around 400 to 500 Filipinos will be employed during the initial operation of the studio. This number will increase to 4,000 when operations go full blast.

"The use of sound stages, prop and set design will result in a first class outsourced support services for the television and film production industry worldwide," Rosenberg said.

"We are excited to enter into this venture with CyberCity. With their proven record in the Philippines and Shogee’s industry expertise, we shall be creating a new era in film and studio services in the region," Lawrence added.

The President said the local movie industry will benefit from the film-making technology transfer and upgrading of skills and techniques that the new venture will offer.

Chinese and Canadian experts will share their knowledge in film-making with Filipino artists through an intensive training program.

Among the famous films that used Shogee’s technology are King Kong and Lord of the Rings.

"That is a very important investment, not necessarily just for Clark but for the whole movie industry," the President said.

Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

All rights reserved