In the 1930s and’40s there were lots of studios turning out films to satisfy the desire for the films. Regrettably, many have gone along with the sites used for other functions, such as housing estates. Elstree was the home to a number of Studios. They included the Gate Studios, now long gone. Still there, are what was the Associated British Picture Corporation Studios, now just called Elstree Studios. Many big films have been produced there, including Star Wars. A lot of TV material is now shot there. Also standing across the street from Elstree Studios is the older ATV Studios, which years before had been the Rock Studios, run by American Joe Rock. These are now used by the BBC for programs such as Eastenders and Casualty. There was a sizable MGM Studio at nearby Boehamwood, where lots of great British pictures were taken. Margaret Rutherford at the Miss Marple movies were photographed there. This was known as MGM British Studios.
At Ealing in West London there is still the Studio which is famous for several George Formby, Gracie Fields films, as well as the famed forties and fifties comedies, like the Lavender Hill Mob and a few serious dramas, including It Never Rains on Sunday and The Cruel Sea. Many of the comedies were taken by the late Douglas Slocombe OBE. Ealing productions were then made at MGM for around two years, still bearing the Ealing name, before Ealing was wound up. Among the Ealing films made at MGM was The Man in the Sky, starring British actor Jack Hawkins. Ealing Studios was sold by the BBC and is still used for productions in addition to film training. Bray Studios was home to the famous Hammer Films, many of these being at the horror genre and starring the late British actor Peter Cushing. At one stage they were owned by the Samuelson group. They were famous for equipment hire. Denham Studios which operated from 1936-1952 was founded by Alexander Korda. The Studio was demolished in 1981. There is still Pinewood and Shepperton turning out excellent material. Pinewood is home to the James Bond films and the Carry On films were shot there. There was a little Studio called Nettlefold in Walton Upon Thames, turning out low budget stuff, including television productions like Robin Hood, starring the late British actor Richard Greene.
At Merton Park they filmed the Edgar Lustgarten Scotland Yard films and the Edgar Wallace shorts. This was shot using a gramophone turntable. There was Beaconsfield Studios that became the National Film School, and Riverside Studios. This had been the Gaumont British Studios, where Alfred Hitchcock shot some of The Thirty Nine Steps. Some Studios have been completely demolished. These include MGM, which is now a housing estate and Lime Grove.