Friday, April 27, 2007

Reminder: FMX'07, Stuttgart, May 1.-4.

fmx/07 is organized by the Institute of Animation, Visual Effects & Digital Postproduction of Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg

Animation studios, effect houses, game developers, production companies and postproduction facilities present their latest achievements. Researchers, hard- and software vendors and users debate new technologies and practical application. Creators, financial backers and distributors talk to each other and pitch projects. Graduates and freelancers meet recruiters looking for new talents.

Friday the 4th is a special day, not just for the party, but also for a full day of high-caliber presentations focusing on intelligent characters and the future of games with speeches from Electronic Arts, LucsArts, Midway Games, Lionhead and AIAS, about animation with indy producer Moon Seun and further talks by Pixar, Disney and Aardman, with vfx by Rising Sun, The Orphanage, Framestore CFC, Double Negative and MPC, and with D-Cinema talks by Thomson, Efilm, XDC and more. Topping it all off, Roland Emmerich takes the stage gives his own, personal view on the effect that effects and the digital process have on making films. Then – as mentioned above – business gives way to the final gong at the EA Closing Party.
Sony Pictures Imageworks is committed to the quality of fmx, contributing with four gloves-off contributions from one of the leading vfx houses in the world: high-end effects for Spider-Man 3, making waves in Surf's Up, house-baked performance capture in the new film Beowulf and the next step in 3D with stereoscopic feature films as experienced in the films Polar Express, Open Season and Monster House – including a screening of Monster House!
fmx review: interactive At fmx/07, games are more important than ever. New worlds are being created by professionals and consumers alike, the growth of parallel realities such as Second Life and World of Warcraft is unprecedented. Prestigious speakers talk about procedural animation and believable behaviors, the design and creation of interactive communities, convergence with games & the use of immersive technologies in film production as well as a look at the future of gaming and gaming technologies.
fmx/technologies: This series of talks on Wednesday, May 2nd highlights technology-driven trends and possibilities in animation: non-photorealistic animation offers new creative power to film-makers (Konstanz University and Def2shoot), in-game graphics get realtime – and interactive (NaturalMotion), creatures get hairy (Framestore CFC) and inter-active immersive environments get hyper-real – straight from the house of Crytek. Adobe Research also shows next-gen image editing ideas and Haggi Floeser-Krey casts light into the jungle of commercially available renderers.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Speed Racer

After years of trying to get going and numerous false starts, the live-action Speed Racer project is closer to moving forward. The Wachowski brothers, Larry and Andy, will co-write and direct the movie, with Joel Silver producing. It will be the first directing effort by the pair since The Matrix series ended in 2003 (which was also produced by Silver). Other behind-the-scenes talent will also reunite, including Oscar-winning visual effects supervisor John Gaeta. The film will be based on the classic 1960s animated series featuring the adventures of race car driver Speed and his gadget-laden car, Mach 5. Other characters that will appear in the movie include various members of Speed's family and archrival Racer X.(Source: The Hollywood Reporter)

So far Emile Hirsch has been announced as playing Speed, with John Goodman as Pops, and Susan Sarandon as his mother (who did not appear in the cartoon).

Illustration by Sean Galloway

Tuesday, April 03, 2007


Disney and Pixar have set Wall-E, Andrew Stanton's next film, for a release date of June 27, 2008.

"WALL E" starts out on Earth in the year 2700. Which -- due to the horrible way that humans have treated this planet -- is now just one massive trash heap floating in space.Earth in fact has become so toxic that -- centuries before our story actually gets underway -- mankind has abandoned the planet. We're now all living aboard the Axiom, this massive spaceship that circles high overhead. Waiting for the day that the planet once again becomes inhabitable.
But the only problem is that mankind hired this enormous, inept corporation -- Buynlarge -- to supervise the clean-up effort. And that company -- in turn -- sent hundreds of thousands of robots down to the planet's surface to pick up all of the more(spoiler-warning!)

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