Friday Flashback #519

SOFTIMAGE|XSI Brings The Barnyard to Life

Omation deploys 3D production environment for animated feature film
(August 10,2004)

Softimage Co., a subsidiary of Avid Technology, Inc., today announced that Omation Studios, a division of O Entertainment, has installed 100 seats of SOFTIMAGE|XSI software to serve as the primary 3D production environment for its upcoming animated feature film, The Barnyard. The film, which offers a glimpse into the hidden world of what barn animals do when humans aren’t looking, is currently in production with an extensive team of CG artists, animators, compositors, and modelers using SOFTIMAGE|XSI software to bring an entire cast of singing and dancing characters to life. Co-produced in association with Nickelodeon Movies, The Barnyard is slated for release by Paramount in 2005.

“When choosing a 3D animation platform to serve as the foundation for creating The Barnyard, we needed a single product that met all of our requirements: customizable character tools that we could use to create, animate and edit; a high performance modeling toolset with all the key simulation effects; and an intuitive, open, and flexible architecture that our artists could adapt to very quickly,” said Steve Oedekerk, creator of The Barnyard. “SOFTIMAGE|XSI had everything we needed to make this project a reality. More importantly, the impressive support of the Softimage team has been first-rate, which has helped us to exceed our original expectations of working with the software.”

Senior product manager for Softimage, Gareth Morgan commented, “Omation is pushing the envelope, technologically and creatively. SOFTIMAGE|XSI software’s unique non-destructive character workflow and photo-real effects tools like hair and fur help them achieve their goal of creating a stunning full-length feature filled with memorable, realistic CGI characters.”

The animated film was written, directed, and co-produced by Omation Studios and O Entertainment principal Steve Oedekerk – whose film credits include screenwriting on the Ace Ventura series, The Nutty Professor, Patch Adams, and Bruce Almighty; directing on Nothing to Lose; acting in Kung Pow! Enter the Fist; and animation work on Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius.

About Softimage Co.
Softimage Co., a subsidiary of Avid Technology, Inc., is an industry leader in 3D animation, 2D cel animation, compositing, and special effects software, designed to address the demands of the film and commercial/broadcast and games/interactive industries. SOFTIMAGE|XSI software, an integral player in Avid’s Make, Manage and Move Media strategy, is the flagship product offering from Softimage.

It is the industry’s first 3D nonlinear production environment providing animators and digital artists the freedom to make professional animation, visual effects, and games – from major motion pictures, to cartoons and commercials, to animated content for video games and Web sites.

Softimage is proud to count amongst its customers: Omation Studios, R!OT, The Mill, Stan Winston Studios, Pixel Liberation Front, Blue Sky Studios, Hybride, Janimation, Quiet Man, PSYOP, Cinepix and Nerd Corps,. The Softimage product family is designed to help users innovate, create, and collaborate throughout the production process.

Friday Flashback #513

3-Democracy! XSI for Everyone!!

In an unprecedented move, Softimage announced in August that its flagship XSI 3D animation package would be available at a base configuration price of $495 (US). Looking closer at this deal, there are no frills. XSI|Foundation is not crippled in any way. It has no watermarks on renders, no features taken out, and no catches. From their booth at the annual SIGGRAPH conference and expo, you could hear the people chanting “Three democracy! Never has so many had access to so much for so little!”