Ed Catmull, who will be honored at the Sci Tech Awards on Saturday, discusses WALL•E, Bolt and improving CG.
Universal Pictures International Ent. (UPIE), the international home entertainment division of Universal Pictures, has appointed Paul Chesney as VP, International Operations, effective from March 2, 2009.
Based in London, Chesney will report to Eddie Cunningham, President, UPIE and will be responsible for the efficiency, systems and planning of all aspects of Universal's international home entertainment operations in regard to manufacturing, distribution and supply chain.
VFXWorld offers its sixth-annual Oscar chat with the supervisors nominated for Benjamin Button, The Dark Knight and Iron Man.
On the heels of opening a new 8,000-square-foot space in San Francisco last summer, VFX company Ntropic has opened a Los Angeles location to service its growing client base in the commercial, feature film and music video arenas. Designed to facilitate creative collaboration and equipped with the latest technology, the new space can handle visual effects projects of any size. Ntropic recently wrapped vfx work on THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL, and worked with Len Wiseman on the third installment of UNDERWORLD, its first major film project out of the L.A. office.
Mark Kochinski has joined Radical 3D as Visual Effects Supervisor.
With more than 15 years of senior leadership and hands-on animator experience, Kochinski will use his extensive technical background to build and create methodologies for a groundbreaking new 3D series ANIMAL ARMAGEDDON.
"Mark has considerable talent and vast television experience," said Jason McKinley, owner of Radical 3D. "Producing over four hours of original content for this series, his experience is key to meeting our deadlines."
Philippe Cardon, Warner Home Video President, International, will be leaving the company, closing a 23-year career with the studio. Cardon has chosen to keep his family in Europe rather than relocate to Los Angeles as part of a restructuring that will bring closer alignment to Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group's home video and digital distribution businesses.
Andrew Farago catches up with Frederator Studios' Fred Seibert and four of the creators of the studio's Random! Cartoons venture with Nickelodeon.
Marc Shmuger and David Linde will continue to serve as the leading executives of Universal Pictures in a new four-year contract extension that also sees Linde elevated to the position of chairman alongside Shmuger.
Fresh TV Inc. has tapped Kalagian Productions to help broaden its development and production slates.
Working as a consultant, Terry Kalagian will source co-production and financing opportunities for both Fresh TV and its animation service partner, Elliott Animation Inc. Kalagian will introduce new partners to the growing company and help diversify its production and business activities.
Tim Sarnoff has resigned as president of Sony Pictures Imageworks amid a "smooth transition" for the Oscar-winning vfx division under the new Sony Pictures Digital Prods. (SPDP) umbrella formed last year. Sarnoff, who has led Imageworks since 2001, joined the company in 1997 as EVP and GM.
Joe Strike was there last week for the ribbon-cutting ceremony at Blue Sky Studios' new home in Greenwich, Connecticut.
Industry veteran Terry Clotiaux has joined Frantic Films VFX (a division of Prime Focus Group) as SVP/COO, Visual Effects Worldwide for Prime Focus Group, and Senior Exec Producer for North America. Clotiaux will be based out of Frantic's Hollywood facility, and has been tasked with building out the company's international vfx operation and establishing its Los Angeles, Winnipeg and Vancouver offices as the North American front-end for Prime Focus Group's network of global facilities, which spans across North America, India and the U.K.
Tom Ortenberg has joined The Weinstein Company as president of theatrical films. In this newly created position, Ortenberg will be involved in all aspects of domestic theatrical releases, including acquisitions, distribution, marketing and publicity of theatrical motion picture product released by both the TWC and Dimension banners.
Most recently the president of theatrical films for Lionsgate Ent., where he worked for over a dozen years, Ortenberg will begin his new position next week in TWC's Los Angeles office, reporting to Bob and Harvey Weinstein, co-chairmen of TWC.
Guerilla FX (GFX), a visual effects, production, post finishing, design and interactive house, in a continuation of their recent expansion, has added integratedD-P/Digital Strategist Darren Himebrook to its creative roster.
Disney has hired Stephen Moore to head its European TV distribution team, replacing Tom Toumazis, per VARIETY. Toumazis left in November to join Endemol.
Moore previously worked in senior positions at Aardman Animations and 20th Century Fox International and will be exec VP and managing director of Disney-ABC-ESPN Television, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Canada starting in late February.
Nexus Productions have signed the French directing duo FX & Mat.
FX & Mat are attracting international acclaim with their amazing and diverse animations. From the pretty whimsy of their recent spot for the Royal Bank of Canada to the brooding intensity of their first short, EN TU BRAZOS, in which they bring to life and give feline grace to the tango dancing couple at the heart of this love story, FX & Mat are pushing creative boundaries and taking a chameleon-like approach to their work.
After we enjoyed a spectacular meal at the brunch festival director Geoffrey Gilmore steps up to the mic and welcomes us to none other than Robert Redford.
Matthew Sagar, former HR Manager and Head of Recruitment at The Moving Picture Company, has joined Satusfaction, the post-production talent agency, to head up a 3D and VFX arm. The new venture aims to supply CG and compositing artists for Film, Broadcast and Commercial projects.
Scott Griffin, senior producer at MPC London, is moving to MPC's Vancouver location, where he will take the position of Head of Production.
The studio, which focuses on VFX for feature films, has recently completed sequences for Zach Snyder's WATCHMEN and is currently working on Jonathan Mostow's SURROGATES for Walt Disney Studios.
The studio is based in the Yaletown district of Vancouver, central to the vfx industry.
The Visual Effects Society (VES), the organization that represents the artists and technologists in visual effects worldwide, recently extended by two years the contract for Executive Director, Eric Roth. With the extension, the contract now expires in December, 2011.
Roth has been the Executive Director of VES since 2004 and under his leadership, has doubled the size of the organization from 900 members to over 1800 members worldwide representing over twenty countries.
Director Adam Elliot chats with Tom Sito about the making of his first clay-animated feature, Mary and Max, which premiered last night at Sundance.
Animation studio SpeakeasyFX, dedicated to creating high-end computer generated character animation and visual effects for the broadcast, feature film, and commercial industries, continues its expansion with the addition of three industry veterans, Executive Producer Sally Anne Syberg, Animation Director Jan Carlee, and Art Director/Designer David Michael Friend.
Paul Johnson, Television Division Director at Reed MIDEM, the Paris-based organizer of international exhibitions and conferences, is to leave the company in mid-March for a new career opportunity to be announced shortly.
Johnson was appointed Reed MIDEM's Television Division Director in April 2003 and was responsible for the company's MIPTV, MIPCOM, MIPDOC and MIP Junior events. He oversaw the launch of the MIPTV Content 360 initiative, the introduction of the International Digital Emmy Awards and the digitization of screenings at MIPDOC and MIP Junior.
Post-production facility Post Logic Studios, a division of Prime Focus Group, has hired colorist Craig Budrick. Budrick is an industry veteran with nearly two decades' experience as a colorist. He joins Post Logic from Technicolor, where for the last two years he worked on remastering feature film projects for Blu-ray, including AIRPLANE, WAYNE'S WORLD and PLANES, TRAINS & AUTOMOBILES.
The Jim Henson Company is relaunching its consumer products division and has appointed Melissa Segal to the new position of SVP, Global Consumer Products. Segal joins The Jim Henson Company from Brandolution, an innovative licensing and product development agency which she founded in 2006. For the past year, Brandolution has represented Henson, helping to build the licensing program for its new digital puppet preschool series, SID THE SCIENCE KID, a co-production of The Jim Henson Company and Los Angeles-based KCET.