In a further coup for German software giant Mental Images, DreamWorks will utilize its Academy Award-winning mental ray rendering program on the upcoming underwater gangster comedy SHARKSLAYER, due in theaters in 2004.
A direct competitor to Pixar's heralded RenderMan, mental ray now becomes a significant part of DreamWorks' rendering pipeline for SHARKSLAYER, the first computer-animated feature produced entirely at DreamWorks Animation facility in Glendale, Calif. DreamWorks began utilizing mental ray as part of its production process following rigorous tests in 2002.
In addition, mental images will provide custom support to DreamWorks to meet its production needs, including 24-hour turn-around and on-site development. DreamWorks will also have access to the mental ray rendering and mental matter modeling libraries.
"We chose mental ray for its technical sophistication and its unsurpassed ability to produce realistic lighting," remarks Jim Mainard, head of software at DreamWorks Animation.
Founded in 1986 by Rolf Herken, Mental Images (www.mentalimages.com
) provides rendering software to entertainment, computer design, scientific visualization, architecture and other industries that require sophisticated imaging. The Berlin-based company, which won a technical achievement award for mental ray this year from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, has serviced such features as HARRY POTTER AND THE CHAMBER OF SECRETS, The MATRIX franchise, SPIDER-MAN and STAR WARS: EPISODE II ATTACK OF THE CLONES.