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Category: Visual Effects

Studio Headline News

Digital Musings From the Editor:

By Rick DeMott | Wednesday, September 1, 2004 at 12:00am

With Bill Desowitz up at ILM for the VAN HELSING DVD press junket, Im back this week with what's new in our neck of the woods. With the premiere of FATHER OF THE PRIDE, VFXWORLD has an article chronicling how DreamWorks worked with Chinese studio Imagi to bring the series to life.

Million Headline News

Passion Performs Powerfully on DVD

By Rick DeMott | Wednesday, September 1, 2004 at 12:00am

Released to retail stores on August 31, 2004, Mel Gibsons controversial film THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST has sold 2.5 million DVD and VHS units within its first 12 hours of release. 20th Century Fox Home Ent. exec said that surprisingly customers were buying more than one copy, averaging 1.8 per person. On its current pace, the film is set to rank up with home entertainment powerhouses SHREK and FINDING NEMO, which sold 6 million units within the first three days of release.

Software Headline News

e-on Software Unveils Vue 5 Esprit

e-on software, a leader in nature simulation software, will start shipping Vue 5 Esprit, the latest version of its award-winning scenery rendering and animation software, in late September 2004. Meanwhile, you can view a "Coming Soon" video, entirely rendered with Vue 5 Esprit, at www.e-onsoftware.com/Press/PR.php?date=August%2030,%202004.

Vue 5 Esprit combines ease-of-use and creativity with the latest advances in rendering technology. With a dedicated toolkit for the creation and rendering of realistic scenery, Vue 5 Esprit brings Natural 3D to everyone's hand.

Star Headline News

Original Star Trek Series Returns to DVD

Sporting a custom plastic shell and condensed to eight discs with bonus features, STAR TREK THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON (1966), comes repackaged to DVD on Aug. 31, 2004 (Paramount Home Ent. $129.99). All 29 episodes following the adventures of Kirk, Spock and the rest of the Enterprise crew contain remastered picture and sound (Dolby Digital 5.1) and are presented in original broadcast order rather than the production order of the previous DVDs.

Features Headline News

Passion Sports No Extras on DVD

THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST comes to DVD on Aug. 31, 2004 (Fox Home Ent., $29.98) with no bonus features but mastered at the maximum bit rate for optimal picture and audio quality. It is anticipated that a special edition will be release next spring (Easter?) containing a slew of bonus features, including the stellar vfx work done by Keith Vanderlaans Captive Audience Prods. under the supervision of Ted Rae (who also served as 2nd unit director).

Effects Headline News

Filmtecknarna & Moneyshots Take F/X VMAs

On Aug. 29, 2004, MTV handed out its annual Video Music Awards, giving Filmtecknarna and Moneyshots big wins for visual effects. Moneyshots took home the top visual effects prize for its work on OutKasts HEY YA vid. Filmtecknarna celebrates for its work highlighted in the Breakthrough Video winner, Franz Ferdinands TAKE ME OUT.

Headline News

Kill Bill 1 & 2 Combo to Hit Theaters

Quentin Tarantino has said that he plans to bring a combined version of his KILL BILL films to theaters, reports USA TODAY. Spurred by strong DVD sales, Tarantino, who owns the copyright to the full-length version of the film, hopes to have the film in theaters early next year.

"It's not just like slapping the two together," he says. "There are slight changes, and it has an intermission, like a '60s movie."

Series Headline News

Seconds From Disaster Premieres on National Geographic

National Geographic Channel employs some of the best CGI techniques to help explain to viewers how but not always why an unimaginable disaster can happen, from the crash of the Concorde to the Oklahoma City bombing and more in a new series, SECONDS FROM DISASTER, that premieres at 8:00 pm on Aug. 31, 2004 on NGC.

Games Headline News

Paramount Acquiring Film Rights to Midway Games' Area 51

Paramount Pictures is acquiring the worldwide film rights to Midway Games' AREA 51, an action-packed thriller videogame scheduled for release in March 2005 for PlayStation2 and Xbox.

"AREA 51 brings some of the most cutting-edge technology to the gaming world," said Christine Peters (HOW TO LOSE A GUY IN 10 DAYS) who will be collaborating with the game developer to produce the film. "Bringing the game's riveting and suspenseful concepts to the big screen will be an exciting motion picture breakthrough."

Software Headline News

Eovia Introduces Carrara 4

Eovia Corp. introduced Carrara 4, the powerful, approachable, complete 3D solution, replacing Carrara Studio 3, now available in Pro and Standard versions. Carrara 4 Pro delivers an enhanced breadth of capabilities and power for professionals while Carrara 4 Standard provides the same approachable interface at an even more affordable price for non-experts.

Headline News

Mira Nair Offered Potter 5 Director’s Job

MONSOON WEDDING and VANITY FAIR director Mira Nair has offered the chance to direct, HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIX, reports THE TIMES OF INDIA.

"I'm getting offers to direct HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIX. I read it over the weekend. I'm still deciding," she said. "I'm not letting all this go to my head. I'm grounded. I practice detachment, it helps me keep my balance. I'm a Dilliwalli, only an asana gets me on my head! My son Zoharan's excited. I've seen all the HARRY POTTER movies with him."

Film Headline News

Gilliam’s Grimm Gets Bumped a Year

Famed director Terry Gilliam seems to not be able to get a flick in theaters these days. With his production of DON QUIXOTE being shut down midway, the BRAZIL helmer moved onto film THE BROTHERS GRIMM, which was originally set to reach theaters fall 2004 then it was moved to February 2005 and now Dimension Films has bumped the fantastic account of the fairy tale writers, The Brothers Grimm, to Nov. 23, 2005.

Series Headline News

Fanning to Headline Potential Alice in Wonderland Series

Ten-year-old acting phenom Dakota Fanning is in negotiations with DreamWorks to headline a series of films based on Lewis Carroll's ALICE IN WONDERLAND and THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS, reports THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. The screenplays have been adapted by Les Bohem, who created the Sci Fi Channels epic mini-series TAKEN, which starred Fanning. The effects heavy films will stick very close to the source material. Industry Ent. will produce the film with Mark Sourian and Keith Addis sheparding the project for DreamWorks.

Marvel Headline News

Marvel’s Deathlok Gets New Scribe

Paramount and Marvel Studios have hired David Self (ROAD TO PERDITION) to rewrite the screen adaptation of Marvel Comics DEATHLOK, reports THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. Stu Zicherman and Raven Metzner (ELEKTRA) wrote the first draft. The story follows everyman who becomes a test subject for a technology research lab that transforms him into a living computer. Marvel Studios' Avi Arad and Crystal Sky Prods. Steven Paul are producing. No director has been seen. DIE ANOTHER DAY helmer Lee Tamahori had long been attached to direct, but has since stepped down.

Headline News

Digital Musings From the Editor:

SKY CAPTAIN AND THE WORLD OF TOMORROW director Kerry Conran confirmed to VFXWORLD yesterday that A PRINCESS OF MARS will be his second feature, which you can read all about in today's news. You'll be happy to know that next month VFXWORLD will publish an in-depth interview with Kerry to coincide with Paramount's Sept. 16 release of SKY CAPTAIN AND THE WORLD OF TOMORROW.

Headline News

NVIDIA & USC Partner on Technical Skill Building

NVIDIA Corp. and the USC School of Cinema-Television have formed a partnership that will provide students training on cutting-edge 3D graphics technology and the ability to graduate with the necessary skills to compete for highly sought-after positions in filmmaking, vfx and animation production, realtime content creation and other interactive industries.

Festival Headline News

New CG Fest Launches in the U.K.

The CGI Festival LeedsLeeds, U.K.November 9 10, 2004

The CGI Festival LondonLondon, U.K.December 7 - 8, 2004

The new CGI Festival will cover both the North and the South, taking place in London and Leeds. The London festival will be at the Business Design Centre from Dec. 7 - 8 and in Leeds at the Royal Armouries Museum from Nov. 9 -10, 2004. The events will feature a major conference and screenings of the best 3D content from around the world and will be developed in close co-operation with the 3D community.

Headline News

Conran Confims Princess of Mars

Writer/director Kerry Conran (SKY CAPTAIN AND THE WORLD OF TOMORROW, opening Sept. 17, 2004), confirmed with VFXWORLD that he has committed to directing Paramount's A PRINCESS OF MARS as his sophomore project. The sci-fi action epic, scheduled for release in 2006, is based on the first book in Edgar Rice Burroughs' 11-volume series, JOHN CARTER OF MARS, which concerns an American Civil War hero that finds himself transported to Mars.

Home Headline News

Warner Announces Release Date for Matrix DVD Set

As previously reported, Warner Home Video has announced that it will release a 10-disk MATRIX collection. The studio has now confirmed that the set will hit stores Dec. 7, 2004 and will be priced at $79.92. THE ULTIMATE MATRIX COLLECTION will include the trilogy, THE ANIMATRIX and 35 hours of bonus material as well as a Neo bust and 80-page book.

The disks include:

Film Headline News

New Zealand Gets Into Fantasy Epic Game for Itself

Wellington-based Silverscreen Prods. and visual effects company Oktobor are forming a company with Taiwan-based Equinox Film to produce a $40 million epic fantasy based on a popular Asian legend, titled LADY WHITE SNAKE, reports THE DOMINION POST. The film will be in English and is set for release in 2008 before the Beijing Olympics.

Game Headline News

Win a Trip to London Premiere Playing Sky Captain Online Game

Paramount Pictures has announced details for the SKY CAPTAIN AND THE WORLD OF TOMORROW Air Combat Challenge" tournament, a three-week contest that began on Aug. 23, 2004. Playing the free downloadable game FLYING LEGION AIR COMBAT CHALLENGE, contestants will vie against one another for a chance to win an all-expense paid trip to the London premiere of SKY CAPTAIN AND THE WORLD OF TOMORROW, opening in theaters nationwide Sept. 17, 2004.

Film Headline News

Weisman Flies in to Helm Widow’s Broom

GEORGE OF THE JUNGLE director Sam Weisman has been tapped to direct WIDOW'S BROOM for Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies, reports THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. The film is based on a book by JUMANJI and POLAR EXPRESS scribe Chris Van Allsburg, who will be adapting his book for the screen. Van Allsburg's production firm Golden Mean will produce the film along with Radar Pictures. Golden Mean partner Bill Teitler will serve as producer. Karen Rosenfelt and Julia Pistor will shepard the project for Paramount and Nickelodeon respectively. The film will go into production early 2005.

Star Headline News

Eidos Signs LEGO Star Wars Game

Eidos, one of the world's leading publishers and developers of entertainment software, has secured the distribution rights to LEGO Star Wars with Giant Interactive Entertainment Ltd. for all countries except Japan. The game will be released in April 2005 for the PlayStation2, Xbox, PC and Game Boy Advance. LEGO STAR WARS combines two childhood favorites, LEGO and STAR WARS, to create an innovative, action/adventure title designed for young gamers.

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