AMC buys ‘The Walking Dead’ studio for $8.25 million

Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes, Gino Crognale as Walker on the set of “The Walking Dead” at Riverwood Studios AKA Raleigh Studios Atlanta Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

This was posted on Friday, August 4, 2017 by RODNEY HO/rho@ajc.com on his AJC Radio & TV Talk blog

AMC has purchased Riverwood Studios, the home base for “The Walking Dead” since 2011, for $8.25 million.

The 120-acre facility has been owned by Kudzu Productions Inc. It’s 35 minutes south of Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport not far from downtown Senoia.

The transaction closed July 19, according to the Atlanta Business Chronicle. 

Kudzu is primarily owned by Paul Lombardi.  Scott Tigchelaar, former president of Riverwood Studios AKA Raleigh Studios Atlanta, also has a small stake in it.

Through Senoia Enterprises, Tigchelaar and Brian Jagt have spent the past decade developing downtown Senoia, which has become a “Walking Dead” tourist town and was home to the fictional Woodbury seasons three and four. The company also owns the walled-off residential area known on the show as Alexandria.

“The studio is owned by my uncle Paul,” Tigchelaar said. “He no longer wanted to be a studio owner.”

AMC has been the sole tenant there for seven years. “This is a good sign that AMC is committed to Georgia and will be here a long time,” he said.

Lauren Cohan as Maggie Greene, Xander Berkeley as Gregory on the Raleigh Studios Atlanta studio lot that AMC just purchased.  Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

Ric Reitz, president of SAG-AFTRA Atlanta, said AMC’s purchase is yet another sign that Hollywood is setting deeper roots in metro Atlanta as the generous tax credits for production companies enters its tenth year.

“It creates a broader footprint for an established television network,” Reitz said. “Georgia is now their home base for any other production or series or movie they might want to make. It’s a very smart buy.”

Of course, “The Walking Dead” eats up the entire space and is not going anywhere any time soon. Although ratings have slipped from its peak, it remains a very popular show. From this past season, the studio was home to the Scavengers junkyard, the Hilltop and the Sanctuary, as well as part of Oceanside. The prison used seasons three and four were also shot at Riverwood/Raleigh Studios Atlanta.

 

 


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