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Category: Visual Effects

Work Headline News

HP Printing Division Showcases VFX Strengths of Poiraud

French brothers Didier and Thierry Poiraud have returned to the U.S. commercial market after releasing their feature debut, ATOMIK CIRCUS, in Paris last week. With leading commercial production company Tool of North America, the brothers co-directed a spot for HPs Printing division, PRINTER, which has been airing in key markets in Western Europe since June. Together with François Vogel, the Poiraud brothers direct U.S.-based projects through Tool satellite company Paranoid Projects @ Tool.

Effects Headline News

PGA Presents Producing Magic On Time And On Budget Mixer

The PGA New Media Council and the Visual Effects Society are hosting a mixer and discussion panel titled "Producing Magic On Time And On Budget." Attendees will be able to meet the producers and executives behind such film and television productions as SPIDERMAN 2, THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW, HARRY POTTER AND THE CHAMBER OF SECRETS, MATRIX REVOLUTIONS, BATTLESTAR GALACTICA, THE LAST SAMURAI, and POLAR EXPRESS. The event will take place on Aug. 19, 2004 at Sony Imageworks Theatre, 9050 West Washington Boulevard, Culver City, California 90232.

Series Headline News

Sky Captain Helm to Take on Princess of Mars

After original director Robert Rodriguez dropped off the project due to his resignation from the Director's Guild over directing credits on his film SIN CITY, Alphaville is in negotiations with SKY CAPTAIN helmer Kerry Coran to direct the screen adaptation of the classic sci-fi adventure, A PRINCESS OF MARS, reports HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. Based on the first book in Edgar Rice Burroughs' 11-volume JOHN CARTER OF MARS series, the studio is hoping to make a franchise. Alphaville has produced THE MUMMY series.

Media Headline News

Media Design School Hires New Faculty

The Media Design School, New Zealand's premiere learning institution for the digital arts, announces a slate of new faculty additions that include Tom Zuber, Patrick McNabb and Richard Hicks, going into its visit to SIGGRAPH 2004 conference at the Los Angeles Convention Center from August 10-12, 2004 at booth #1958.

Software Headline News

SIGGRAPH 2004 Lines Up New Zealand Players for Tech Talk

New Zealand companies will be featured at a panel session as part of the SIGGRAPH conference Tech Talk series, held this year at the Los Angeles Convention Center, August 10-13. Hosted by NZTE, the session, "Middle Earth: Imagination Made More Real" provides a presentation forum for New Zealand companies and will be moderated by Dr. Steve Upstill, a founding member of Pixar Animation Studios and a recent New Zealand immigrant.

Headline News

Gnomon Comes to SIGGRAPH with New Resident Artist and DVDs

At SIGGRAPH 2004, the Gnomon Workshop and the Gnomon School of Visual Effects (booth #1113) will be showcasing its educational products with various presentations and its library of 82 DVDs. In addition, Gnomon will have books available to get them signed such as EXPOSE I, EXPOSE II, D'ARTISTE, ELEMENTAL and more from booth partners CG Networks and Ballistic Media.

Awards Headline News

Scientific/Technical Oscar Deadline July 30

Friday, July 30, 2004, is the deadline to submit scientific and technical achievements to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for 77th Academy Awards consideration.

In late May, application forms were sent to more than 850 companies and individuals within the sci-tech community both in the United States and abroad.

Headline News

ATI Brings HD Gaming to Mobile Users

ATI Technologies Inc. raised the performance bar with the introduction of MOBILITY RADEON 9800. Designed for the mobile gaming enthusiast, MOBILITY RADEON 9800 enables users to enjoy the latest DirectX9 games at optimal settings for the highest levels of performance.

Work Headline News

Click 3x Adds VFX Producers to Staff

Producers Tyra Hanshaw and Cara Buckley have joined the production department at Click 3x. Both Hanshaw, who arrives from Berwyn Editorial, and Buckley, formerly with Spontaneous, have broad experience in producing visual effects, animation and other post work. At Click 3x, they will produce both commercial and broadcast design projects.

Animated Headline News

Hellboy DVD Features McBoing Boing Shorts

Mike Mignola's comic book, HELLBOY, about the world's greatest and wittiest paranormal investigator, didn't make as big a splash on the big screen as expected, but Guillermo del Toro's movie has already been wowing viewers on this special edition DVD (Columbia TriStar Home Ent., $28.96), which streets July 27, 2004.

Interactive Headline News

Gamers Can Get Their Paws On Catwoman

Those who would like to play with the pretty Halle Berry version of CATWOMAN from Warner Bros. Pictures theatrical can get their paws on the new videogame from Electronic Arts available in stores now for PlayStation 2, Xbox, Nintendo GameCube, Game Boy Advance and PC CD-ROM.

Headline News

Fox Nabs Courtney Crumrin Comic Rights

As a way of gaining their own children's fantasy franchise, Regency Enterprises and Fox 2000 Pictures has optioned the rights to Ted Naifeh's COURTNEY CRUMRIN comicbook series, reports VARIETY. Stan Winston and Brian Gilbert are set to produce the film with Sheryl Longin (DICK) penning the screenplay. Stacy Maes and Maria Faillace will oversee the project for Regency and Fox 2000 respectively. The deal gives the studios the rights to COURTNEY CRUMRIN AND THE NIGHT THINGS, COURTNEY CRUMRIN AND THE COVEN OF MYSTICS and COURTNEY CRUMRIN IN THE TWILIGHT KINGDOM.

Film Headline News

Last Unicorn Gets New Director

Continental Film has announced that LORD OF THE RINGS second-unit director Geoff Murphy has signed on to direct the screen adaptation of the fantasy novel THE LAST UNICORN. Michael Pakleppa will produce the film with Julián Doyle, who has worked on visual effects for Monty Python and Terry Gilliam films, serving as special effects unit director. The story was previously adapted as an animated film by Rankin-Bass in 1982. Continental hopes to have the film ready for release in winter 2006. For more information on the production, visit

Film Headline News

"Dream" Director Set for Watchmen

Paramount has confirmed that REQUIEM FOR A DREAM helmer Darren Aronofsky will direct the much-anticipated film version of Alan Moore's classic graphic novel THE WATCHMEN, reports HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. The long in-development project was originally set to be X-MEN writer David Hayter's first directing job, but he will step aside to let Aronofsky direct the film from his script.

Headline News

Paramount Brings Sky Captain & South Park Creators to Comic-Con

Paramount Pictures will be previewing its forthcoming action/adventure, SKY CAPTAIN AND THE WORLD OF TOMORROW, and puppet-starring action spoof TEAM AMERICA WORLD POLICE at the 35th Annual Comic-Con International Convention. Working with convention organizers, the studio will unveil a first look at SKY CAPTAIN presented by the film's star, two-time Academy Award nominee Jude Law, along with co-stars Bai Ling and Giovanni Ribisi, writer/director Kerry Conran and producers Jon Avnet and Marsha Oglesby.

Digital Headline News

Digital Musings From the Editor:

VFXWorld continues its informative coverage this month of non-entertainment 3D advancements with "3D Visualization in Education." Mary Ann Skweres uncovers the rapid rise of 3D animation as a valuable teaching tool throughout educational institutions - paving the way for all kinds of scientific and engineering breakthroughs. Then, later in the week, Bruce Shutan discovers "The Real CSI and Beyond" in his examination of vfx artists and animators specializing in the hot field of forensics and medical science.

Million Headline News

Universal Acquires Shadowmancer

Universal Pictures has made it official; it has purchased the feature film rights to vicar G.P. Taylor bestseller SHADOWMANCER for a seven-digit sum, reports VARIETY. Fortitude Films originally bought the rights to the book in March for $1 million against $6.2 million for the book and will produce the film. Universal will cover Fortitude's original deal, which included 15% of merchandising. Fortitude's Steve Delaportas and Lisa Marie Butkiewicz will produce.

Design Headline News

Gnomon Workshop Releases Six New Concept Design DVDs

The Gnomon Workshop has six new DVDs touting the concept design work of Mark Goerner and Neville Page in conjunction with Design Studio Press. Goerner's two titles illustrate sketching and rendering interior spaces; and Neville Page's four DVDs take you through character design, painting and detailed techniques for rendering eyes and flesh.

Season Headline News

Profile Millennium - The Complete First Season on DVD

MILLENNIUM, Chris Carter's 1996 follow-up series after THE X-FILES, bows on DVD July 20, 2004 (Fox Home Ent., $59.98). THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON arrives with all 22 episodes on six discs. This bleak thriller stars Lance Henriksen as a mind reading profiler who joins a mysterious crime busting organization that takes on the most bizarre cases. Naturally it's full of grand conspiracies and spooky supernatural subtext. VFX by Area 51.

DVD Features:

Headline News

finalRender Stage 2 for Maya 6 to Preview at SIGGRAPH 2004

cebas Computer GmbH will demo its upcoming release of finalRender Stage-2 for Alias Maya 6 at SIGGRAPH 2004, to be held Aug. 8-12 at the Los Angeles Convention Center. Cebas' premiere rendering tool for Alias Maya 6 will be available to view live at booth# 2039.

finalRender Stage-2 for Maya 6 offers the following feature set for the first time for Maya users:

Framestore Headline News

Boyd New 3D Head at Framestore CFC

Framestore CFC has appointed Andy Boyd as the company's new head of 3D, commercials. Boyd came to the company from Glassworks last September, and has already amassed an impressive list of credits at Framestore, including work on Goodyear HALFPIPE, Lynx TOUCH, Daewoo SHEET and the Post Office ANT spots. His most recent project has been the forthcoming Johnnie Walker TREE, which features noteworthy 3D arboreal action.

Headline News

Digital-Tutors Releases mental ray Training Kit

Digital-Tutors (DT), an award-winning service of PL Studios Inc., announced the release of its mental ray training kit for Maya. This highly requested training kit provides core data needed to learn the extremely powerful mental ray rendering system. The mental ray kit features step-by-step instructions on sub-surface scattering, hdri, global illumination, final gathering, displacement mapping, light baking and more.

Effects Headline News

Icecandy Uses Useful Things for Sci Fi's Slipstream

Icecandy Ent. recently provided more than 20 vfx shots for Sci Fi Channel's upcoming feature, SLIPSTREAM, from Promark Ent. Working with director David van Eyssen, Icecandy developed on-screen graphics, composited effects and created the main title sequence for the time-travel based action drama using Profound Effects' Useful Things 1.6.

Headline News

Carnahan Finding Mission Impossible

Paramount Pictures has confirmed that director Joe Carnahan has left the director's chair for its MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 3, reports VARIETY. The reason given was the Hollywood cliché of creative differences. However, Paramount is still determined to starting filming next month at Berlin's Babelsberg Studios.