Tours of Ealing Studios

Timed Ticket-only Tours of Ealing Studios
Ealing Green   W5 5EP
​First tour: 2.00pm (then every 20 mins) Friday 13th
Meet at security barrier indicated on the map
Click on the map for a larger version

Tours now fully Sold Out: click here to go to our Contact Page
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Following on from our first year's success, there will be timed ticket-only tours of this historic location in the heart of Ealing.

Ealing Studios has been at the centre of the British film industry for more than a century. Steeped in history, they are the oldest working film studios in the world and have survived the onset of the ‘talkies’, two World Wars and the ever-changing technological advances in the film and television industry. Ealing Studios has been the home of many legendary films of all genres and has produced some of Britain’s greatest performers. 

The site was first occupied by Will Barker Studios from 1902. It was acquired by theatre producer Basil Dean who founded Associated Talking Pictures Ltd and in 1931 they built Ealing Studios, transferring all production there in December of that year. In 1938 Basil Dean left and was replaced by Michael Balcon from MGM who discontinued the ATP name and began to issue films under the Ealing Studios name. In the 1930s and 1940s, Ealing produced many comedies with stars such as Gracie Fields, George Formby, Stanley Holloway and Will Hay, who had established their reputations in other spheres of entertainment. The company was also instrumental in the use of documentary film-makers to make more realistic war films. These included Went the Day Well? (1942), which we included in our first festival programme in 2013.

In the post-war period, the company embarked on a series of celebrated comedies which became the studio's hallmark. The first was Hue and Cry in 1947 and the last Barnacle Bill in 1956, including such famous titles as Passport to Pimlico, The Man in the White Suit (which we showed in our 2014 festival) and Kind Hearts and Coronets.

In 1955 the BBC purchased the studios and used the facility as a base for location filming, contributing to numerous well known BBC series and dramas, including​ Colditz, The Singing Detective, Z Cars and Fortunes of War. Between 1992 and 2000 the ownership changed twice - a time of transition.

Then in 2001, under new ownership planning permission was granted to develop the site into the 'new generation' facility it is today, providing offices and bases for 21st century digital and television production companies. The original (listed) five sound stages are part of the current complex. Once again, Ealing Studios is a thriving production facility - as it used to be. Films under the revived Ealing Studios logo include The Importance of Being Earnest (2002) and St. Trinian's (2007), the latter being one of the most successful British independent movies of all time. In parallel the facilities are used for television dramas, including certain internal scenes for Downton Abbey. Similarly, one of the sound stages has been the home of The Imaginarium, a separate studios set up by Ealing educated Andy Serkis and Jonathan Cavendish, the respected film producer (works including Bridget Jones's Diary), to employ the latest techniques in action including 'performance capture' used to create "Gollum" in The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit.

To our knowledge this is the second time for many years that the Studios will open their doors to the public. We are grateful to them for their support of the 2015 Festival.