Came across this news yesterday - a campaign to save Stage 28, the original soundstage built to house the Paris Opera sets for Rupert's Phantom Of The Opera during early production in 1924.

 Stage 28 under construction

Stage 28 under construction

At the time, an article in Universal Weekly (Jan 10, 1925) said 'No studio in the world large enough to house the Paris Opera House sets, a special building had to be set up for it. The complete building could easily contain the two largest stages in Hollywood.  This is the first structural steel setting ever built.  Interior of the opera house over 100 feet high, with five tiers of balconies, and seats 3,000 people for the great opera scenes the house is packed to capacity.'

 Stage 28 under construction

Stage 28 under construction

Now, of course, not all of that has survived 90 years, and bigger stages have been built in the mean time; but it's interesting to note how many other productions have taken place on that set - everything from subsequent Phantoms to Hitchcock's Torn Curtain, to Cirque du Soleil and The Muppets!

 Stage 28 as used in The Muppets (before 'We Built This City' montage!)

Stage 28 as used in The Muppets (before 'We Built This City' montage!)

Obviously, it would be a huge shame if it were torn down, as a piece of Hollywood history; at the moment there's some confusion over what the actual plan is, with one suggestion being that the Universal City theme park is expanding and that this will become part of the attraction. Apparently the set itself has some kind of historical protection, which I'm glad to hear - hopefully that's enough to keep it intact!

(Do feel free to sign the petition anyway, just to make sure...)

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