Hollywood Comes to Jerzey

Originally Published: October 12, 2004

Although it was announced by Mercer County Executive ROBERT PRUNETTI a number of months ago, that an Academy-Award-winning movie production studio possibly intends to move to Trenton, New Jersey, it now seems to be confirmed that Manex Entertainment plans to build a multi-million dollar studio here.

Manex Entertainment Inc. is the parent company of Manex Studios in Alameda Point, California, which specializes in high-tech special effects, most notably on the first Matrix film. Manex also licenses proprietary hardware and software to the industry and by leasing studios and services to movie, television and other commercial production companies.

“Manex is eager to finalize their plans to move here and has identified several old factory buildings in the Arena District perfectly suited for their special-effects facilities and studios,” Prunetti told more than 500 members of the Greater Mercer County Chamber of Commerce during his annual State of the County Address at Sovereign Bank Arena. The deal could mean potentially millions of dollars in revenue for the state, which unknown to many locals, has one of the busiest production schedules from film and television of any state.

GARY KUCHER of Manex said in an interview with a local paper that “In evaluating the establishment of a world-class facility on the East Coast, we have been particularly impressed by the renaissance underway in the City of Trenton. We have considered all properties in the area and specific properties within the Arena District appear to meet our current needs. The close proximity to the Arena, other planned development, and access to the site makes this location even more desirable for our project and the many employees who will work there.”

The company is currently eyeing a site on Hamilton Avenue in the city, which was originally slated to be the home of a local YMCA. The company plans to file with the New Jersey Economic Development Authority for low-interest loans, training dollars and a business employment incentive grant.

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