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Elstree Studios

The Shining was filmed at Elstree Studios in Borehamwood UK. All stages have been used to build the sets. Workshops at Elstree have also been converted into sets, for example the Gamesroom and Red Bathroom.
This gave me the idea to fit my existing sets into the stages, workshops and buildings.
For that I first had to reconstruct the old Elstree Studios around 1980.
I started mapping the remaining buildings with the help of Google Earth and Bing Maps.
In addition, there was an old floor plan of the Elstree Studios around 1980. Unfortunately not to scale, but all the old studio buildings are on it.
The building of Stage 7, 8 and 9 still stands as it was in 1980.
The Forest Service, Hallorann’s living room and the caretaker apartment were built here.


Also now working on a reconstruction of the Elstree Studios on Shenley Road around 1980, during the recording of The Shining.
After 1985 many buildings were renovated or demolished. The old buildings with Stage 1, 2, 3 and 4 have disappeared.
The workshops in the backyard have been shortened and Stages 5 and 6 have disappeared.
Based on the buildings that are still standing, an estimate can be made of how big the old stages were and where they stood.
A few renders of the reconstruction of Elstree around 1980.

An overview of the Elstree Studio

The Administration Building in the foreground is an intricate building with many corridors, roofs of varying heights.
Fortunately many photos can be found on the Avengerland site,

Some constructions of the Administration Building remain hidden. Like in the middle of the building probably the Viewing Theaters.

Elstree Studios overview
Elstree Studios overview

The Enigma Building

The first building to be reconstructed for the ‘Elstree 1980’ project is the Enigma building.
I’ll try to incorporate as many features of this building around 1980 as possible.
The plywood plates of the kitchen set can be seen behind the windows.
The boiler room set will be placed at the loading platform (left of the middle).
In the background Stage 8 and 9. The white building on the left will become the ‘real’ boiler building, including the chimney.

Enigma at Elstree Studios
The Enigma building
boilerroom in the Enigma building
entrance to the kitchen set
Stage 7, 8 and 9
In the background Stage 8 and 9. The wall has been left out to give a view of the Caretakers apartment, with the stairwell on the left and the apartment on the right.

The Elstree Studio

This is a render video of Stage 1, 2, 3, 4. In Stage 4 is the set of the Lobby. In the plaster shops are the Gamesroom and Red Bathroom sets.
The flight continues in Stage 8 and 9. The Caretakers Apartment.

Rendering has taken quite a few hours.
Total (in 3 separate parts) the render ran for 36:12 hours. With 24 fps, but low resolution and no denoiser.

The plan is to make a new clip. This time with a number of additional buildings.
Now working on the old Administration and offices building at the front, the Stills Sound and Post Production building and the old Boiler building. On photos I could see that coal was still being used in 1980.
One idea is to let the camera go further into the caretaker set.

Video clip of the Caretakers Apartment

I made a short video clip of the Apartment in Stage 8 and 9. They are the last two stages in the yellow building.
It is made quickly with a low resolution.
My intention is to first rebuild all buildings around 1980 to scale using photos and videos, and then to give all sets their place.
A longer and better quality clip should be the result.

Video clip of the passage round 1980

This is a short clip showing several buildings of the Elstree Studio circa 1980.
I made up a name for the gate, because I couldn’t find an official name on the internet.
We see the ‘Elstree House Gate’ with Administration Offices on the right and the Power House on the left. As we get through the gate and go through the passage, we can see the entrance door to Stage 2 and beyond, Stage 3 on the left. On the right are the carpenter shops and store facilities.

Elstree Kitchen / Canteen building

This is one of the first buildings to be reconstructed. According to the map on the site tvstudiohistory.co.uk this building was supposed to be the Kitchen/Canteen back then.
It’s hard to read on the map, but there are two bars on the side. So the side gets an extra entrance.

A lot of help to me was the site Avengerland by Mr A.R. McKay.
Lots of photos of Elstree before the construction of Tesco. These photos enabled me to rebuild Elstree around 1980.


The Elstree Kitchen / Canteen Building has side entrances.
I call it ‘Kitchen and Canteen’ because around 1980 the building was probably used for that. Under the building is a parking garage, with the entrance on the north side. The stairs next to the basement probably lead to the entrance of the parking garage. I don’t know if that’s the actual build.
In photos the stairs are visible through the windows.
There is a maintenance room on top of the roof.

Stage 1 and 2 and the Administration building.

Below the ‘western gate’ seen to Shenley Road.
On the right the ‘Administration building’ far from finished. Aerial photos show a small lawn below the windows on the right.
To the left is the ‘Special Effects building’ and to the left of the gate is a small porter’s cabin.

view of the western gate
Western Gate on Shenley Road
The ‘Western Gate’ on Shenley Road

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