Category: Visual Effects
STAR TREK VOYAGER: THE COMLETE SECOND SEASON (Paramount Home Ent., $129.99) was recently released on DVD, offering 26 episodes on seven discs. More sci-fi and greater psychological emphasis as Captain Kathryn Janeway (Kate Mulgrew) and crew come into their own, struggling to find their way home. VFX courtesy of Eden FX, Digital Muse, Digital Magic Co., Foundation Imaging, CIS Hollywood, Newkirk Special Effects, Pacific Ocean Post Digital Film Group and Santa Barbara Studios.
EI Technology Group has launched Electric Image Animation System 5.5, an update to the cross-platform professional 3D animation application. It includes dozens of new features, including caustics, a built-in scripting tool, new shaders, HRDI support, an array of new Animation capabilities, new deformation tools and GrangerFX Plug-in support. The software also features Radiosity, multi-processor support, Match Move, Material Library System, Macromedia Shockwave support, unlimited network rendering, character animation tools, global illumination and more. It runs on Mac OS 9/X.
Zoic Studios helped create the illusion of cold via 47 shots in which visible breath is seen in the Fox feature THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW, which opens May 28. Working in decidedly warmer temperatures then they were replicating, Zoic's team animated for three months perfecting the extensive breath scenes needed in a frozen New York. The shots were created using Maya, combustion and flame.
VFX producer: Raoul Y. BologniniVFX super: Rocco Passionino
Continuing its recent growth, Steele VFX has appointed Monique Eissing to the post of Henry artist. Eissing, who has been with the visual effects and finishing studio since 2001, previously served as Mac artist and assistant Henry artist.
"Monique is technically fluent in the art of visual effects," said Steele VFX ceo Jo Steele. "Her progress here has been astounding. Our clients love her subtle attitude, knowledge and willingness to take on any challenge."
Visual effects house A52 is the next pick for VFXWorld's Focus On Gallery. Check out more than two-dozen images from the company's work and read up on the techniques and challenges that went into making them. From music videos to commercials, the Focus On Gallery highlights some of the best work coming out of studios both big and small.
If you'd like to be considered for inclusion in the Focus On Gallery, contact Dan Sarto at email@example.com.
Visit the Focus On Gallery.
ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND helmer Michel Gondry has been named as the director of Rudy Rucker's sci-fi thriller MASTER OF SPACE AND TIME, reports VARIETY. As well, Jack Black (SHALLOW HAL) has been tapped to star. French production company Midi Minuit is in negotiations to bring the project to DreamWorks for Walter Parkes and Laurie McDonald (GLADIATOR) to produce. Gondry worked with Midi Minuit on music videos before be crossed over into features. The story follows two mad scientists who discover a way to control reality.
With the next INDIANA JONES flick put on the back burners, Harrison Ford has signed on to star in outer space thriller GODSPEED, which will be produced by James Cameron via his Lightstorm Ent., reports VARIETY. The film is set to use the same 3D technology that Cameron used on his documentary GHOST OF THE ABYSS. Joining Cameron in the producer's chair will be Lightstorm's Rae Sanchini and Jon Landau.
X2 writer Zak Penn is negotiating to script Universal Pictures' SPY-HUNTER feature, reports VARIETY. Recently, the studio announced that action superstar John Woo would direct the film. Set to star Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, the film is an adaptation of the long-running Midway videogame franchise, which features a spy in a suped sports car set out to defeat a cartel seeking world domination. Chuck Gordon and Adrian Askarieh with Woo and partner Terrence Chang of Lion Rock will produce.
AWN and VFXWorld are giving away one "total access" reserved festival ticket to this year's VES Festival, the best visual effects storytelling platform in the world! The event runs June 18-20, 2004 at The Rafael Film Center, 1118 Fourth Street, San Rafael, CA 94901. These reserved tickets, which normally cost $300, give you complete access to the entire three days of presentations and screenings.
This year, there are 8 fabulous presentations that will focus on the process of visual effects and how they bring the vision of the director to life. Highlights include:
For TROY, MPC developed its own crowd simulation software for the battle scenes along with creating a CGI version of Troy, while Framestore CFC conjured a digital Greek armada. After reading Alain Bielik's comprehensive account, you realize just how crucial CGI was to the Wolfgang Petersen epic, as we continue our focus on films this month.
Los Angeles, California October 22-24Washington, D.C. October 28-30
Deadline: August 1, 2004
National Geographic announces a call for animation entries for the All Roads Film Festival to be held October 2224, 2004, at the Egyptian Theater in Los Angeles and October 2830, 2004, and at National Geographic Headquarters in Washington, D.C. The festival will celebrate the works of indigenous and under represented minority culture filmmakers from around the globe.
New Line Cinema has hired ABOUT A BOY director Chris Weitz to helm the film version of Philip Pullman's award-winning fantasy book series, HIS DARK MATERIALS, reports VARIETY. Tom Stoppard (BRAZIL) wrote the adaptation of the first novel THE GOLDEN COMPASS. The series chronicles two kids in parallel universes who battle shape-shifting creatures, witches and armored polar bears. New Line production president Toby Emmerich will oversee the film.
Even though the next SUPERMAN feature still lacks a headliner, Warner Bros. has assigned the picture's f/x work to ESC Ent, with Stan Winston consulting on the design of a prototype Superman's suit. Kim Libreri will serve as visual effects supervisor on the film, which hopes to go before cameras early next year. The film is being scheduled for a summer 2006 release. CHARLIE'S ANGELS helmer McG will direct the flick from a script by ALIAS creator J.J. Abrams.
For those who enjoyed the stylish vampire/werewolf cult favorite, UNDERWORLD, it's time to replace your DVD with the new unrated extended version released May 25 (Columbia TriStar Home Ent., $34.95). There's 12 minutes of new footage highlighted by a sexy subplot with vampire Erika (Sophia Myles), backstories on the Lycans and a new battle. But the violence is no more graphic and there's no nudity with Kate Beckinsale.
Maybe proving the fact that you can't just form a franchise out of thin air, NBC has decided it will now pass on the VAN HELSING TV series TRANSYLVANIA, which it previously signed on to air, reports VARIETY. The original deal, which was struck nine months ago, was the first in-house synergistic move between the two would-be corporate sisters, NBC and Universal Network Television.
Oregon3D Inc., The Academy for Digital Arts & Sciences, is offering a six-week Oregon3D Character Animation Camp, June 6 thru July 16, 2004. It gives students a series of challenging courses designed to immerse participants into the world of character animation. Taught by certified instructors and renowned industry professionals such as Mike Wellins, award-winning former director from Vinton Studios, the Oregon3D Character Animation Camp offers a series of six, individual weeklong classes that range from the history of animation to creating a finished piece of high-quality animation.
The Oregon3D Character Animation Camp is a multi-week "camp experience." Students who cannot commit to the entire six weeks have the option to sign up for the Oregon3D Character Animation Camp's courses a-la-carte at regular course prices, or subset of classes for a discounted rate. Those students, who register for the whole six-week camp, can choose either a Maya or 3ds max specialty track. The Oregon3D Character Animation Camp courses are as follows:
New Line Cinema and Blitz Digital Studios has been awarded the One Show Interactive Pencil award for their promotional CD-ROM, THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE RETURN OF THE KING Dell Collector's Edition. The promotional advertising campaign was launched in December 2003 to tie in with the film's Holiday release.
Warner Home Video announced the Sept. 14 DVD release of a two-disc collector's edition of THX 1138 ($26.99 and $19.97 for single-disc version), George Lucas' first film from 1971. The director's cut will include not only meticulous digital audio and video restoration (a collaboration between Lucasfilm and Warner Home Video) but also digitally enhanced backgrounds, cityscapes and crowds of people, according to Jim Ward, vp marketing and distribution at Lucasfilm.
Atari and Zombie Inc. have announced the completion of development on SHADOW OPS: RED MERCURY, the highly anticipated action game for the Xbox. In the game, players control Frank Hayden, a special forces operative hand picked to track down and destroy the stolen "Red Mercury," a secret substance that threatens the world with nuclear annihilation. The title is expected to be available in North America on June 15, 2004 and in Europe on June 18.
If seeing the next HARRY POTTER adventure on the big screen isn't big enough for you, Warner Bros. Pictures is releasing HARRY POTTER AND THE PRISONER OF AZKABAN, in select IMAX theatres day-and-date June 4, 2004 with the regular theatrical release. The film has been digitally re-mastered with IMAX DMR technology. The film is scheduled to expand into additional IMAX theatres over the summer.