While holiday traditions differ from household to household, one fairly universal activity is going to the movies. If you’re one who enjoys buttered popcorn and Hollywood product with your egg nog and visions of sugar plumbs, chances are you’re enjoying movie magic made possible by Autodesk products. The company has proudly acknowledged that many of the leading post-production facilities behind the season’s blockbusters relied heavily on its digital solutions for 3D animation, visual effects creation, color grading and editing and finishing.
“Autodesk provides end-to-end solutions for the entire film workflow, from idea creation and story boarding to final production,” says Marc Petit, VP of Autodesk’s Media & Entertainment division. “This allows Autodesk to have a deep understanding of all aspects of the film workflow, enabling us to create unique solutions that meet the specific needs of post-production facilities. Also, facilities with an Autodesk pipeline enjoy the seamless movement of data through the various stages of film workflows.”
Framestore CFC used the Autodesk Inferno visual effects system to create
The very cool animated title sequence for Sony Pictures’ Casino Royale, the 21st James Bond film. According to Autodesk, director and titles designer Daniel Kleinman wanted to refresh the franchise’s signature opening credits presentation, and Framestore’s head of Inferno, William Bartlett, was able to deliver a modern look with a retrospective feel.
For 20th Century Fox’s Night at the Museum, which opens nationwide on Friday, Rhythm & Hues used Autodesk Maya to model approximately 60 of the museum’s characters, who all come to life after hours. The studio also used Autodesk Inferno 2007 for compositing and color correction, and employed both Inferno and Maya to create visual effects for Paramount’s Charlotte’s Web.
Los Angeles-based LaserPacific Media Corp. used the Autodesk Lustre
digital color grading system on a variety of fall releases, including Paramount Vantage’s Babel, Warner Independent’s For Your Consideration and Sony’s Stranger Than Fiction. For Stranger Than Fiction, the facility played a key role in integrating many of the film’s visual effects shots, including the timeline effect. Colorist Mike Sowa also used the system to achieve the desired colors and saturation for the film, which cinematographer Roberto Schafer wanted to reflect the look, style and feeling of Jacques Tati’s 1967 film, Play Time.
Buzz Image Group used Autodesk Flame to shape futuristic scenes for The Fountain, director Darren Aronofsky’s visually arresting but largely overlooked film about a love that defies death. For one of this film’s final scenes, Flame was used to create the effect of skin ripping as plants grow through it. The facility’s work with Flame also involved compositing live and computer-generated growing-plant elements into live-action footage. “Autodesk Flame allows us to take full advantage of our artists’ talent and creativity,” says exec visual effects producer Jacques Levesque. “The system’s speed and interactivity let us experiment in real-time until we perfect the shot.” Autodesk’s Toxik digital compositing software was also used by Mokko Studios to complete 8 hero shots for the film.
Autodesk 3ds Max 3D animation, modeling and rendering software was used by
Youngu-art to model and animate legendary creatures that return to devastate planet earth in the Korean film D-War from Showbox. “We chose Autodesk 3ds Max for its powerful polygon modeling, which allowed us to create the complex and detailed characters in a very intuitive and efficient way,” says Ho-Suk Jang, computer graphic supervisor for the film. “The software’s biped character animation tools also allowed us to easily control the various types of characters as they interacted with crowds of humans.”
Maya, 3D animation, modeling and rendering software Autodesk inherited though its acquisition of Alias, was used by Cinesite to create shots of a CG steam train for The Weinstein Co.’s Miss Potter, while Moving Picture Company put the solution to work with the creation of 20 shots including a CG army for Sony Pictures Classics’ The Curse of the Golden Flower (Man cheng jin dai huang jin jia).
A number of Autodesk products were used to created the visuals in Touchstone’s Mel Gibson-directed Apacalypto. Asylum employed Inferno, Toxik and Lustre, while Look Effects used the appropriately named Maya, as well as Flame and Flint to provide effects for the film set during the decline of the Mayan empire.
Autodesk was founded in 1982 and is headquartered in San Rafael, Calif. For
More nformation on the company and its suite of products, go to