Award-winning stop-motion studio LAIKA (The Boxtrolls, ParaNorman, Coraline) has picked London developer The Foundry’s web-based FLIX software solution to aid its pre-production and storyboarding process for upcoming animated features, including its latest stop-mo/CG hybrid project Kubo and the Two Strings — a sweeping, swashbuckling adventure set in a mythical, ancient Japan, set for release August 19, 2016.
LAIKA cited FLIX’s tight integration with other popular 2D and 3D creative applications and web-based infrastructure as driving factors in adopting the solution.
“The workflow and steps necessary for managing versions and publishing to editorial was more streamlined than in-house tools, and we thought working with The Foundry would ultimately lead to a more feature-rich toolset for story development than we could develop internally,” says Jeff Stringer, director of Production Technology at LAIKA.
“The work across sequences is more visible to the team, and collaboration on a sequence is easier to manage — as are reassignments,” Stringer adds. “The head of story has better access to everyone’s work and a good toolset for making updates and managing the flow of boards to editorial. The director and producers have easier access to the latest work, and iterations are moving faster. Version management and publishes are also streamlined, and there is no need for coordinators or PAs to assist in the management of boards.”
FLIX was developed as an in-house solution at Sony Pictures Imageworks before being acquired by The Foundry. The 2013 HPA Engineering Excellence Award winning solution has been proven in over 15 projects since 2008, including Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 and Hotel Transylvania.