Friday Flashback #268



Montreal, Quebec, Canada (May 30, 2001) – Softimage Co., the Montreal-based animation and special effects subsidiary of Avid Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ: AVID), today announced that its 3D animation software was chosen as one of the greatest technological inventions developed in Quebec during the past century.

Softimage technology was recognized by L’Ordre des Technologues Professionnels du Quebec (OTPQ), translated The Order of Professional Technologists of Quebec.

Since 1986, industry professionals have relied on Softimage to develop software that meets the needs of creative individuals in the film, commercial, broadcast, games and interactive markets. The OTPQ lauded Softimage for its innovative 3D animation software which has been used to create cutting-edge animation featured in such award-winning films as “Jurassic Park,” “Titanic,” “X-Men,”and “Gladiator.”

“We are truly honored to be recognized by our peers here in Quebec for our role in helping transform Quebec into a leading high-tech province and a center for innovation,” said Michael Stojda, managing director of Softimage. “We’re gratified that Softimage has had a positive economic effect on the local economy and is in such elite company, placed in the same circle as Quebec businesses that have been around for years longer.”

To choose the winners, OTPQ’s members and board of directors nominated a list of eligible companies that have made a significant technological impact on the culture of Quebec, and are linked to the geography and history of the province. The candidate companies also must have played a significant part in the province’s quality of life and technological development. The final 10 candidates named by OTPQ included Canadair-Bombardier and Hydro-Quebec (the eventual winner).

“Our company culture and our creativity are very much a reflection of our surroundings in Montreal, and to a wider extent, the province of Quebec,” added Stojda. “We take immense pride in this honor from the OTPQ.”

The Order of Professional Technologists of Quebec is a 5,000-member professional association of technologists in many technical fields, including: electronics, aeronautics, data processing, chemistry, mechanics, construction, forestry and natural sciences.

Friday Flashback #266

1998 SOFTIMAGE|SDK 1.8 for IRIX and Windows NT

Friday Flashback #272

Action Synthèse drops Max for Softimage on The Magic Roundabout


Softimage Spins Magic Roundabout Movie
Ryan Ball Feb 5th, 2003 Animation Magazine

In creating animation for the upcoming CG feature version of the 1960s cult European TV series The Magic Roundabout, French animation studio Action Synthèse has chosen to use Softimage’s 3D software, SOFTIMAGE|XSI.

Scheduled for release in France and the U.K. in 2004, Action France and Pathé U.K.’s The Magic Roundabout will feature all original characters and two all-new additions. Australian pop star Kylie Minogue will lend her voice to cartoon character Florence. Fellow singer Robbie Williams will provide the voice for Dougal, the world-weary, shaggy dog and Absolutely Fabulous star Joanna Lumley will be Ermintrude, the whimsical cow.

Two years into the project, Action Synthèse decided to switch from Discreet’s 3ds max to SOFTIMAGE|XSI, using the 3ds max to XSI converter tool to bring existing content into the restructured 3D pipeline.

The production, underway at Action Synthèse’s recently expanded facilities in Marseilles, in the South of France, is employing more than 50 HP workstations running the SOFTIMAGE|XSI and 40 licenses of SOFTIMAGE|XSI Batch, Softimage’s batch processing & rendering solution.

According to the studio, the hair and fur tools of SOFTIMAGE|XSI have been instrumental in creating Dougal the dog’s signature long-haired coat.

A significant portion of the movie takes place in a winter land, featuring snow, glaciers, and even an ice castle. To re-create the unique feel of winter light and ice reflections while keeping rendering times under control, the team at Action Synthèse is relying on the interactive renderer within SOFTIMAGE|XSI. The new image-based lighting pass in version 3.0 allows the digital artists to generate entire lighting environments based on images or sequences.