A film and television soundstage that has also been used as an events space, named East Hampton Studio, is in contract to be sold to Twin Forks Moving & Storage, according to its owner, Michael Wudyka, who is preparing to leave the area.
While Wudyka owns the building, it sits on town-owned land that he leases. He bought the building from the original owner, Frazer Dougherty.
Wudyka said he previously secured permission from East Hampton Town to use the facility for a storage business, but the permission only applied to about 65 percent of the space. Then recently he received the consent of the town to use the whole building for storage, he said.
However, not all of East Hampton Studio will become storage. The current tenants, including WVVH-TV, will stay put, Wudyka said.
Though East Hampton Studio never became a bustling filmmaking destination as was hoped, it has had its fair share of notable productions over the years, including Nancy Meyers’ Something’s Gotta Give starring Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton, and Barry Sonnenfeld’s HBO pilot Suburban Shootout. Recently, part of the Brooklyn Bridge was recreated there for the upcoming film Winter’s Tale with Russell Crowe and Colin Farrell, and the Showtime series The Affair just wrapped there, Wudyka said.
Wudyka, of Southampton, said that he moved to the Hamptons 15 years ago and raised his sons here. Now that they are out of school, he plans to move back to Detroit, where his brothers and cousins live.
To prepare for the move, he has sold off all his local assets. At one point, he owned five motels named the Enclave Inn. He bought his first motel, in Bridgehampton, from Martha Stewart and recently sold it to Donna Karan and daughter Gabby Karan De Felice, who also owns the Tutto Il Giorno residents in Southampton Village and Sag Harbor. And in the past year and a half, he and developer Josh Guberman built and sold three spec houses in the Hamptons, totally $22 million, Wudyka said.
Though he will miss the Hamptons, he said, “I’ll take my friendships with me regardless of where I go.”
“I’m obviously going to miss the beach—being able to go to the ocean every single day,” he said, adding that he’ll also miss the sense of community in the Hamptons year round. He said that through his business endeavorers he always strived to give back to the community. For instance, East Hampton Studio served as a a venue for charitable events, and he said the facility will still lend itself to the community. “I’m proud of that.”