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Behind-the-Scenes Sustainability for ‘Downton Abbey: A New Era’


June 01, 2022

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Our commitment to environmental stewardship extends to the set and the screen through sustainable production practices. This commitment starts before the cameras roll.

The 2022 Focus Feature film, Downton Abbey: A New Era, embraced a host of environmental practices, including using renewable diesel in generators and vehicles, contacting vendors and suppliers to ensure they had sustainability practices in place, and using sustainable plywood for set walls.

Additional sustainability measures included daily environmental messaging on call sheets, reducing meat in catering, using trains over planes, and reusing sets that have been used since season one of Downton Abbey. The movie was also filmed at Ealing Studios which has switched to 100% renewable energy. These combined measures earned the film a Gold Seal from the Environmental Media Association.

"With support across all departments and the studio, 'Downton' really embraced the importance of reducing their environmental impact on set." - Charlotte Ashby, Head of Production, Carnival Films.

Launched in 2009, the NBCUniversal Sustainable Production Program empowers production teams to integrate environmental best practices into on-set protocols for NBCUniversal film and TV productions—from using LED lighting, lower-emission fuel alternatives, and hybrid and electric vehicles to reducing waste through set material reuse, recycling and composting, and donating excess food to hunger relief organizations. Over 70 productions across our film and TV portfolio participate each year.

NBCUniversal is also a member of the Sustainable Production Alliance, a consortium of film, television, and streaming companies dedicated to reducing the entertainment industry’s environmental impact by advancing sustainability initiatives through advocacy, education, and innovation. The companies work together to knowledge-share and align on best practices across the industry. They also partner with the Producers Guild of America Foundation’s PGA Green Initiative to host, a free resource to all filmmakers that includes tools, green vendors, and detailed reports dedicated to advancing sustainable production.