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Category: Visual Effects

Headline News

Luxology Hosts 3D Modeling Competitions at Designated Apple Stores

Luxology announced that it will conduct a series of modo events, competitions and presentations during the month of April at Apple Stores in Los Angeles, Santa Monica, San Francisco and New York City. These Luxology sponsored events, titled RAPID 3D MODELING WITH MODO ON OS X, will include demonstrations of modo, a powerful new subdivision surface and polygonal modeling platform, and 3D speed modeling competitions, which will provide attendees with the opportunity to choose the ultimate modo modeling master.

Film Headline News

Imagineer Releases monet 1.5

Imagineer Systems, the U.K.-based developer of mokey and monet visual effects tools, announced the immediate availability of monet 1.5. Aimed at the broadcast, film and video post-production markets, monet is a vital tool offering a start to finish solution for replacing elements in film and video and is being used frequently for product placement. It is available in two versions monet software and monet extreme, both of which will be on display at NAB 2005 (booth #SL253).

Film Headline News

DreamWorks Gives Perfume to Domestic Audiences

DreamWorks Pictures has pacted with Germany's Constantin Film to acquire the domestic distribution rights to the new thriller, PERFUME, based on the bestselling novel by Patrick Suskind.

Set in 18th-century France, the story of murder and obsession centers around a man who, strangely lacking any scent of his own, has a unique talent for identifying smells, which he uses to create the world's finest perfumes. His gift leads to obsession when he turns to murdering young women on the verge of womanhood in order to capture their aroma.

Series Headline News

New Line Acquires Monster Manga

New Line Cinema has secured the feature film rights to MONSTER, Naoki Urasawas best-selling Japanese manga series, according to THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. Trilogy Ent.s Neil Kaplan, Pen Densham and John Watson will produce. The psychological thriller tells the tale of a young doctor who saves the life of a little boy only to find out years later that the boy was a brilliant killer. MONSTER has already been adapted into an animated TV series and spawned an 18-volume manga series, which have sold more than 25 million copies in Japan, and has a strong following in Asia and Europe.

Film Headline News

Bay Boards Transformers

Michael Bay is negotiating a deal to direct THE TRANSFORMERS for DreamWorks and Paramount, according to VARIETY. Steven Spielberg is exec producing the live-action/CG flick, which is set for a Thanksgiving 2006 release. Shooting is scheduled to begin this fall. The film has been long in development, but take on the film from Spielberg ignited the flames under the project. Writers Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci wrote a draft of the script and pitched it to Bay, who they are working with on THE ISLAND, which spurred the BAD BOYS director to take interest in the project.

Producers Headline News

Comicbook Writer Tapped for The Spirit Feature Script

Comicbook writer Jeph Loeb has been hired to adapt Will Eisners THE SPIRIT for the big screen, reports VARIETY. Odd Lot's Gigi Pritzker and Deborah Del Prete will produce, along with Batfilm's Michael Uslan. Exec producers are Benjamin Melniker and Steve Maier with co-producers being F.J. DeSanto and Linda McDonough.

The story follows a presumed dead masked detective who uses his questionable existence as an advantage in fighting crime in Central City.

Production Headline News

Redford Horse for Charlotte Voice Work

Adding more star power to the cast of live-action/CGI CHARLOTTES WEB, Robert Redford has signed on to voice Ike, the arachnophobic horse who faints at the first glimpse of Charlotte, reports VARIETY. The picture is currently filming in Melbourne.

Redford joins other star voices, which include Julia Roberts, Oprah Winfrey, John Cleese, Steve Buscemi, Cedric the Entertainer, Reba McEntire, Kathy Bates, Thomas Haden Church and Andre Benjamin. Dakota Fanning is the films live-action heroine.

Headline News

Virtual Partners Gaming Class with Dr. Derek Elliott!

Virtual Partners is hosting a special Game Development and Modeling Class Monday April 25 to Wednesday April 27, 2005, featuring Professor Derek ELLIOTT!

This expanded 3-day class in Game Development Techniques & Edgeloop Modeling for Characters is based on Dr. Elliotts full day presentation at the recent 2005 Game Developers Conference.

Derek Elliot is a Discreet training specialist gaming and program coordinator for Animation Arts Centre degreed program, Seneca College.

Digital Headline News

Digital Musings From the Editor:

Robert Rodriguez SIN CITY opened last Friday and love it or hate it it represents quite a stunning and provocative achievement in photographic style and digital environments. Graphic indeed. You can read all about how Hybride, CaféFX and The Orphange divided the work on the three segments, The Hard Goodbye, The Big, Fat Kill and That Yellow Bastard, in Tara DiLullos comprehensive article for VFXWORLD.

Game Headline News

Connery Back as Bond — For Videogame

Sean Connery will reprise his role as James Bond for Electronic Arts' forthcoming videogame version of FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE, according to the HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. The first Bond actor will provide his voice and likeness as is was in the 1963 MGM classic. Original characters from the film included in the game will be Q (Desmond Llewelyn), Donald "Red" Grant (Robert Shaw), Rosa Klebb (Lotte Lenya), Tatiana Romanova (Daniela Bianchi), Kerim Bay (Pedro Armendariz) and Miss Moneypenny (Lois Maxwell).

Entertainment Headline News

Majesco Inks Worldwide Publishing Deal For Aeon Flux Games

Majesco announced it has secured the worldwide rights to publish AEON FLUX for the Xbox and PlayStation 2. The game is scheduled to coincide with the theatrical release. Majesco's AEON FLUX ties together the animated series, which ran on MTV from 1992-1997, and the motion picture, which is slated for release in fall 2005.

Technology Headline News

NVIDIA Launches nForce4 SLI Intel Edition

NVIDIA Corp. announced the immediate availability of the company's new NVIDIA nForce4 SLI Intel Edition media and communications processors (MCPs) for Intel platforms. This new line of core-logic solutions incorporates a host of new, leading edge, NVIDIA features never before available on the Intel platform, including NVIDIA SLI technology, hardware-based firewall security, advanced storage solutions and native Gigabit Ethernet networking.

Headline News

Dan Ritchie announces PD Pro Digital Painter v3.1

Dan Ritchie, author of the award-winning paint and animation software Project Dogwaffle and PD Pro, has announced the availability of a new update called version 3.1, available for as a free download to users of PD Pro 3.0 and as a full version installer to new users.

Animation Headline News

Kaze, Ghost Warrior Facial Animation Tool Released

Timothy Albee, creator of the 3D-animated KAZE, GHOST WARRIOR short, has released, in conjunction with programmer Mac Reiter of Mac Reiter Creations, has released the facial animation tool developed for the project that cut his production time considerably.

Effects Headline News

CaféFX Helps Build Sin City

When director Robert Rodriguez of Troublemaker Studios set out to make a stark black-and-white movie based on three of the books from Frank Millers SIN CITY ("A Hard Goodbye," "That Yellow Bastard," and "The Big, Fat Kill") he was determined to be true to that original style and to make a film that looked like nothing else. Shooting actors on greenscreen, he employed ComputerCafé Group's CaféFX to create the backgrounds for one of the episodes, essentially, to create Sin City from the ground up.

Games Headline News

Avid Kicks-Off ‘SOFTIMAGE|XSI Mod Tool Lock & Load’ Challenge

Avid Technology Inc. announced the SOFTIMAGE|XSI Mod Tool Lock & Load Challenge. The challenge sponsored in part by HP, NVIDIA and gives gamers the opportunity to win more than $25,000US in prizes for developing mods modified content for popular video games using the SOFTIMAGE|XSI Mod Tool v4.2, the freely available version of the companys professional 3D animation software.

Headline News

Luxology Offers Free Production Evaluation Version of modo

Luxology Llc. announced the immediate availability of a free production evaluation version of modo, its powerful new subdivision surface and polygonal modeling platform. Fully functional and unrestricted, the production evaluation version of modo is unique to the industry where software demos and learning editions often disable features or create other limitations.

Technology Headline News

AMD64 Technology Redefines Movie Making in All-Digital Sin City

The dual AMD Opteron processor-based workstations and servers from Verari Systems were used throughout the production pipeline for maverick director Robert Rodriguez' latest all-digital feature, SIN CITY, which opened today (April 1, 2005).

Dark Headline News

Dark Water Moved Up One Month

Touchstone Pictures' psychological thriller, DARK WATER, will now open on July 8, 2005, one month ahead of its previously scheduled release date. The film, starring Academy Award-winning actress Jennifer Connelly, and helmed by acclaimed director Walter Salles (THE MOTORCYCLE DIARIES), is produced by Bill Mechanic, Roy Lee and Doug Davison. Based on a film by the creators of the Japanese version of THE RING, DARK WATER also stars Oscar nominees John C. Reilly, Tim Roth and Pete Postelthwaite, along with Dougray Scott and Camryn Manheim. Rafael Yglesias wrote the screenplay.

Headline News

Cuaron Served Life of Pi

Fox 2000 Pictures is in final discussions with the Warner Bros.-based director Alfonso Cuaron (HARRY POTTER AND THE PRISONER OF AZKABAN) to replace M. Night Night Shyamalan as the director of LIFE OF PI, reports VARIETY.

Fox is moving to Cuaron to handle the adaptation of the Booker Prize-winning bestseller by Yann Martel, because it is unwilling to wait a year and a half for Shyamalan to finish his next film LADY IN THE WATER at Warner Bros. Because Cuaron has a contract with Warner, Fox 2000 will have to hammer out a split rights deal with WB.

Nick Headline News

Fire Breather Blows Into Paramount & Nick Movies

Paramount and Nick Movies are negotiating to buy the film rights to FIRE BREATHER, a fantasy graphic novel by Phil Hester and Andy Kuhn, according to trades. Published by Image Comics, the comic revolves around high schooler Duncan Rosenblatt, who's half-human and half-dragon. Hes always at odds with his divorced parents a sweet-natured soccer mom and a 300-foot monster.

If the deal goes through, Nick svp Julia Pistor will producer with Adrian Loudermilk of Venture Management will take an exec producing credit.

Headline News

Duchovny Stars In Sci-Fi Parallel

THE X-FILES star David Duchovny is set to star in the upcoming sci-fi feature PARALLEL, reports SCI FI WIRE. The film was written and will be directed by first-timer Josh Boone.

"It's a very, very interesting, very well-written sci-fi thriller, to throw a couple of genres at you," Duchovny said in an interview. "That's getting closer to becoming a reality to shoot."

Film Headline News

Kairo Remake Gets American Stars

Kristen Bell (TV's VERONICA MARS) and newcomer Steve Talley will star in long in development remake of Japanese supernatural horror film KAIRO titled PULSE, reports THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. Making his feature debut will be commercial director Jim Sonzero. The film will be produced by Neo Art & Logics Mike Leahy and Joel Soisson. Production is set to begin early this summer in Romania. The story centers on a website run by an evil force whose takes control of web surfers lives. Wes Craven was originally attached to helm the project.

Film Headline News

Warner Bros. Climbs into The Treehouse

Warner Bros. Pictures has bought Ron Friedman and Steve Bencichs live-action, coming-of-age adventure THE TREEHOUSE.Wes Ball will make his feature directing debut on the film, with Tapestry Films Robert Levy, Peter Abrams and Andrew Panay producing. Warners' Lionel Wigram and Lauren Craniotes, along with Warner Bros. Animation president Sander Schwartz, are shepherding the film.

The story chronicles the adventures of a lonely boy who uncovers a magical treehouse, which transports him to a fantastical forest ruled children rule and parents dont exist.

Mermaid Headline News

Charmed Producer Swims for Mermaid Series

CHARMED producer Brad Kern has written and will oversee an untitled pilot for The WB! centering around a mermaid, according to SCI FI WIRE.

"The mermaid is being played by a fresh new face that we've plucked out of Sydney, Australia," Kern said in an interview. "We were casting literally around the world looking for our mermaid. We looked in London and New York and New Zealand, Hollywood, Florida, Melbourne and Sydney."