Posts: Technology

Media.net Used by ILM to Communicate with Lemony Snicket's Director

by malducin

Media.net announced that it's secure networked media sharing services were used by ILM on the production of Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events to collaborate with director Brad Silberling, who was at Martha's Vineyard editing the film.

Read More


The Rendering Power at ILM and Weta Digital

by malducin

Digit Online magazine has an article describing the ever increasing rendering power at VFX facilities like ILM and Weta Digital. Cliff Plumer and Milton Ngan, Chief Technology Officers of ILM and Weta Digital respectively, comment on the challenges and the requirements for ever more challenging visuals.

Read More


CineAlta Camera Customized for Star Wars Episode III

by malducin

An article at DigitalAnimators.com has a brief description of the HD camera used for Star Wars Episode III, which was customized by ILM and others so that it also records the camera information for matchmoving.

Read More


Vicon System Used on Van Helsing

by malducin

CGNetworks.com is running an article on how ILM used a Vicon setup to motion capture performances for Van Helsing. Motion Capture Supervisor Doug Griffin comments how the the actresses were mocaped for the vampire brides.

Read More


ILM Tests NVIDIA's Gelato

by malducin

At NAB 2004 NVIDIA announced its hardware based renderer Gelato, developed by the Digital Film Group (that includes some members of the defunct Exluna). ILM's Chief Technology Officer Cliff Plumer comments on testing Gelato.

Read More


mental ray 3.3 Adds OpenEXR Support

by malducin

Mental Images has announced the availability of mental ray 3.3 at NAB 2004. In it press release mental images mentions that key customers, including ILM, Buf Compagnie, DreamWorks and ESC, contributed to the specification of new features like support for ILM's OpenEXR file format, better subsurface scattering, detailed shadow maps and hair rendering optimizations among others.

Read More


Discreet Software in Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World

by malducin

Discreet announced in a press release how its compositing solutions were used by Asylum and ILM on Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World. VFX Supervisors Nathan McGuiness (Asylum) and Stefen Fangmeier (ILM) discuss how lustre, flame and inferno systems were used in the film.

Read More


Oscar 2003 Sci-Tech Nominees Announced

by malducin

VFXPro.com is listing the candidates for the Academy Awards 2003 Sci-Tech awards. ILM is once again been considered with the Subsurface Scattering Rendering System (SCAT) used in such projects as Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (for Dobby) and the Hulk. Other VFX related research include Massive, developed by Stephen Regelous for Weta for the Lord of the Rings trilogy. The image based lighting (IBL) and HDRI techniques of the ICT Graphics Lab at USC under the leadership of Paul Debevec (although much research was done at Berkeley), and the Lighting Reconstruction Toolkit by ESC Entertainment used in the Matrix sequels. Special mention also goes to Greg Cannom for Silicone Appliances. SciTech and VFX Branch head Richard Edlund gives some comments on the nomination process.

Read More


Network World Fusion Describes ILM's Network

by malducin

Network World Fusion magazine has just posted an article on the network infrastructure at ILM. Raleigh Mann, Manager of Network Operations at ILM, discusses the current setup with a 10G core via Foundry switches, the incredible bandwidth needed for this Summer's projects (96 TB per day) and even the design of the future network when ILM moves to the Presidio.

Read More


Details on ILM's Renderfarm from Linux Journal

by malducin

The August issue of Linux Journal provided many details of ILM's rendering infrastructure, which was used on such projects as The Hulk. The article detailed not only the specifications of the machines but the customization work ILM did, including modifications to the Linux kernel and their custom batch scheduling program.

Read More


Cliff Plumer on Technological Progress

by malducin

The Sydney Morning Herald has posted an article interviewing ILM CTO Cliff Plumer. He discusses some of the technological advancements at ILM, including more processing power, Linux and OpenEXR.

Read More


New HD Camera for Episode 3

by malducin

Yahoo! Finance is reporting on the new HD camera models that will be used for Star Wars Episode III, with production slated to start this June. Among the new features include integrated "under-cranking", originally developed by ILM to shoot the miniatures, and a new recorder capable of capturing the images without pre-filtering or sub-sampling.

Read More


Animation Software Battles for VFX Business

by malducin

An article on the Canadian Business Magazine discusses the battle between the 3 main animation software companies in Canada: Alias/Wavefront, makers of Maya, Softimage, and Discreet, makers of 3DStudio Max. There is a brief discussion, with comments from ILM R&D director Steve Sullivan, about how companies like ILM use a mix and match approach.

Read More


Discreet Products on Final 3 VFX Nominees

by malducin

The Discreet website announced that their flame and inferno systems were used in all three Oscar nominated films, including Star Wars Episode 2.

Read More


AMD Based Systems to Continue to Power ILM

by malducin

Silicon Strategies is reporting that ILM will continue to use AMD based systems as part of their computing infrastructure, both in workstations and servers, including the upcoming 64 bit offerings.

Read More


RackSaver Clusters Speed Up ILM

by malducin

Most of ILM latest movies, including Star Wars Episode 2, MIB2, Minority Report and Signs, were rendered on clusters of AMD powered rack servers, provided by RackSaver. ILM CTO Cliff Plumer has commented on the increased performance from these machines.

Read More


Post Industry Talks about Episode 2 HD Tech

by malducin

PostIndustry.com, sister site of VFXPro.com, has an article article about the impact the HD cameras had on ILM and the filming of Star Wars Episode 2. Fred Meyers, HD Supervisor discusses some of the issues involved.

Read More


HD Pipeline for Episode 2 Explained

by malducin

The American Cinematographer website has posted a web supplement to their September issue covering the Episode 2 work. This time around, they cover how the pipeline was setup at ILM to handle the all HD footage, with extensive info provided by Fred Meyers, who supervised the HD cameras, and VFX executive producer Judith Weaver.

Read More


ILM Continues Intel Workstations Deployment

by malducin

The Animation World Network has posted an article that ILM has deployed more Intel based P4 workstations, presumably Linux ones.

Read More


AMD Touts CPUs Use in Episode 2 Pre-Viz

by malducin

AMD's website has posted an article on the use of their processors for the pre-viz work for Episode 2.

Read More