Filming for new HBO series Demimonde in Belfast scrapped due to 'budget issues'

Filming of a major HBO production in Belfast, created by Star Wars director JJ Abrams, has been scrapped because of budget issues.

'Demimonde' was in its pre-production phase at Titanic Studios in east Belfast, however as first reported by The Hollywood Reporter (THR), no agreement could be found between the creator and the American broadcaster.

It is understood that Belfast-based workers who were working on the production have had their duties withdrawn.

It's thought hundreds of jobs could be affected with many more indirectly hit.

According to THR, JJ Abrams sought a budget of more than $200m to secure the future of the series, his first original creation since 2008.

Titanic Studios was previously used for series such as the successful 'Game of Thrones' which provided a major economic boost to Northern Ireland, as well as 'Dungeons and Dragons'.

NI Screen chief executive Richard Williams believes the series could have been worth 10-15 million pounds.

"Who knows what we'll replace it with and what value it will bring.

The real loss isn't what didn't happen, but the loss of the multi millions that would have been spent and the jobs that have been lost." said Williams.

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