The upcoming Center for Film, Television and New Media has received a new moniker, after legendary television producers Marcy Carsey and Dick Wolf recently donated about $6 million toward its construction.
The center, now titled the Carsey-Wolf Center for Film, Television and New Media, is part of a state-funded academic building complex that is being supplemented with private donations. Groundbreaking on the three-building facility, which will be located between the UCSB bus loop and the Events Center, is scheduled for 2007.
The center will include a public theater, film production facilities, screening rooms, computer labs, archives and meeting rooms.
Carsey is a co-founder of Carsey-Werner, an independent television studio that has produced such programs as “The Cosby Show.” Her two children are UCSB graduates and she is a trustee of the UCSB Foundation, as well as an honorary alumna.
Wolf is a producer and writer, best known for his creation of the series “Law & Order.” Wolf serves on the advisory board of the center.
Constance Penley, co-director of the center and a UCSB professor, said the building will dramatically expand available teaching and office space on campus.
“The center is going to be part of a very large building complex that will stretch from the bus circle almost to the Events Center,” Penley said. “It’s three buildings.”
Philanthropic contributions toward the construction of the center have already reached the $10 million mark. Carsey and Wolf have been the lead donors; however, the project has also garnered $2 million from Joseph and Helene Pollock, $1 million from UCSB alumnus Michael Douglas and a $1 million grant from the Annenberg Foundation.
UCSB is still soliciting an additional $10 million to spend on purchasing equipment, as well as for an endowment for programs to appear at the complex, which will include a multi-purpose building named after the Pollock family.
“The Pollock Building will be a classroom by day and a theater by night,” Penley said.
The buildings will house offices and teaching space for students in majors other than film and media. Penley said the complex will feature a Letters and Sciences Building, and many of the offices currently in Ellison Hall will be relocated following the completion of the center.
“The Letters and Sciences Building will house everyone that’s in Ellison Hall right now,” Penley said. “[That includes] film and media studies, communications, sociology, law and society and [letters and sciences information technology].”
Penley said Hollywood has taken an interest in underwriting UCSB’s new building complex in spite of the fact that the school’s film and media program does not focus on film production. Instead, the department teaches film history, criticism and theory.
“We are pleased and honored that the Hollywood industry wants to contribute to media education and a strong liberal arts and sciences curriculum,” Penley said. “It’s more typical for big people in the industry to give to production programs. We’re not a film school, but we do a remarkable amount of production.”