AppleTV+’s Ambitious Sam Esmail Sci-Fi Drama ‘Metropolis’ To Shoot In Australia

AppleTV+’s big budget TV reworking of Fritz Lang’s classic 1927 sci-fi film Metropolis from Mr Robot creator Sam Esmail is to shoot to Australia.

The production is expected to create nearly 4,000 jobs in the state of Victoria, where filming will take place, and make use of one of the world’s largest ‘virtual production’ infrastructures.

NBCUniversal’s Universal Studio Group is producing the show with Esmail, who was behind USA Network’s Mr Robot and Amazon’s Homecoming and is writing, directing and show running the eight-part drama. NBCU’s Aussie producer Matchbox Pictures will handle on the ground production.

Metropolis is set in a futuristic urban dystopia and follows the attempts of Freder, the wealthy son of the city master, and Maria, a saintly figure to the workers, to overcome the vast gulf separating the classes in their city and bring the workers together with Joh Fredersen, the city master.

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Australia’s VicScreen attracted Metropolis to the state through its Victorian Screen Incentive grant. It is expected to be the first of several NBCU projects in the region representing an injection of A$416M ($310M) into the local economy.

The Victorian Government is supporting the build of state-of-the-art virtual production infrastructure, including one of the world’s largest permanent ‘LED volumes’ (high-tech digital screens that display background environments and visual effects on set). The tech was used in Disney+ series The Mandolarian.

“With this industry-leading infrastructure capability, we’re putting Victoria at the forefront of the global screen industry,” said Minister for Creative Industries Danny Pearson. “Together, with the recent addition of our new super sound stage, this will make Victoria the go-to place for ambitious screen productions.”

Recent Victoria productions include Netflix’s Clickbait and NBC’s La Brea, Robbie Williams biopic Better Man, starring Paul Mescal and Saorise Ronan, has wrapped shooting.

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