Framestore CFC has announced the formation of Framestore Feature Animation. Heading the new venture will be David Lipman, who joins the company as managing partner after eight years at DreamWorks Animation, where his roles included producer on SHREK 2 and co-exec producer on SHREK.
William Sargent, joint-ceo of Framestore CFC, said, "The creation of a new film studio in London's Soho is a real cause for celebration in the U.K.'s film and cultural community. We have long wanted and planned to take this next step in our creative ambitions, and it's very exciting to be starting this journey."
Of the challenges ahead, David Lipman said, "The talent pool in the U.K. and Europe is second to none, and we are looking forward to building an extraordinary team."
Founded with the aim of becoming London's premiere permanent feature animation studio, Framestore Feature Animation has in partnership with Universal Studios already commenced work on its first project. THE TALE OF DESPEREAUX, based on the award-winning children's novel by Kate DiCamillo, will be directed by Sylvain Chomet, writer and director of the Oscar nominated TRIPLETS OF BELLEVILLE. The project's producers are Allison Thomas (SEABISCUIT, PLEASANTVILLE) and Gary Ross (SEABISCUIT, PLEASANTVILLE, BIG).
TALE OF DESPEREAUX, Universal Pictures feature animation project, is a development from producers Allison Thomas and Gary Ross' Larger Than Life Productions. Universal acquired the rights on this best selling American children's novel in 2004 and subsequently came together with Academy nominee Sylvain Chomet as director. The Universal financed production has now started its visual development phase at Sylvain Chomet's studio in Edinburgh, Django Films.
British Film Commissioner Steve Norris said, "The U.K. is home to some of the best animation talent in the world. The opening of Framestore Feature Animation a major breakthrough in studio-supported animation here - is great news for these talented people, and a milestone for the U.K. film industry."
The development of Framestore Feature Animation will involve a large scale recruitment drive by the company with up to 200 new staff being expected to join as THE TALE OF DESPEREAUX gears up through 2007.
Lipman joined DreamWorks Animation in 1997 and served as co-head of production before moving over to work on SHREK. He went on to write and produce the multi-sensory attraction SHREK 4-D for Universal theme parks.
Prior to joining DreamWorks, Lipman was supervising producer and executive in charge of production at Hanna-Barbera. He also served as vp/executive producer for USAnimation, Inc. He is a member of the Writers Guild and Directors Guild of America.
Framestore CFC (www.framestore-cfc.com) is one of the world's leading visual effects and computer animation studios. The company has won numerous international awards including two Technical Academy Awards from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, three BAFTA Awards, eleven Primetime Emmy Awards and ten VES Awards.