Star Wars Episode 7 News

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

ILM Expands With a New VFX Facility in London and a Doubled Head Count in Vancouver.

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The VFX division of Lucasfilm, now owned by The Walt Disney Company is getting ready to launch a new feature visual effects facility in central London. Also preparing for the upcoming Star Wars: Episode 7 and The Avengers: Age of Ultron, ILM doubled their head count in their Vancouver office...


From THR:

ILM is set to sign a lease for space just outside of Soho -- a neighborhood already populated with numerous VFX houses -- and north of Tottenham Court Road, ILM president and general manager Lynwen Brennan told The Hollywood Reporter. An extensive remodel of the space is planned, and the target to move-in is late March or early April. “It will be a full service studio,” she said. “We’ll have an art department, previsualization, and an entire end-to-end visual effects and computer graphics pipeline.”

She also revealed that since production of J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars is planned at London’s Pinewood Studios, “we’ll certainly have some art department and previs there, but we’re not currently planning on having a large ILM presence at Pinewood. We did consider splitting the facility in two, but we are now focusing on our London facility and having an as-needed facility at Pinewood to be near the production.”

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ILM’s Roger Guyett (who earned his third Oscar nomination this year for Star Trek Into Darkness) will be the VFX supervisor on Star Wars Episode VII. The plan is for the ILM facilities to handle all of the work for the film, not just in the U.K., but also in ILM’s San Francisco headquarters, and Singapore and Vancouver locations, as well as at its strategic partner, Base FX in Beijing. The London facility will have a pipeline allowing it to share work with the other ILM offices.

The U.K. base is part of an overall global expansion plan -- and it is not opening just to accomodate Star Wars. “ILM will be working on not only Lucasfilm projects, Disney projects and Marvel projects but [productions] for other studios as well,“ Brennan said. 


Star Wars: Episode VII is scheduled for a Dec. 18, 2015 release, while the upcoming Avenger film is slated to open May 1, 2015. Additionally, ILM’s global slate includes Jurassic World, Transformers: Age of Extinction, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Tomorrowland, World of Warcraft, Luc Besson’s Lucy and Angelina Jolie’s Unbroken. The company is also wrapping up Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

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There are currently no plans in place to bring Lucasfilm’s Skywalker Sound to the U.K., though Brennan isn’t ruling that out.
On ILM’s global business, she said, “We're in a very healthy place.” In addition to its expansion into the U.K., its Vancouver unit led by supervising producer Randal Shore is beginning to operate out of a new, larger facility in the city’s Gastown section, which Brennan said would allow that team to double from 100 to 200 employees.

Additionally, Lucasfilm recently opened ILM Singapore’s new facility -- led by its general manager, former head of the U.K. Film Commission Colin Brown -- which is part of the 22,500-square-meter "Sandcrawler" building, named after the Jawas' vehicle in Star Wars Episode IV. Said Brennan: “We have built the talent base there, and now not only are they doing work for San Francisco, they are now seeking out work in the region. That is very important to us.”

19 comments:

  1. Talk about job opertunities! Woohoo!

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  2. any news is better then no news, i literally check this site 10+ times a day waiting for news haha. i dont know what im looking foward to more the VII trailer or the movie itself.
    probably the movie haha but when that trailer finally comes... omg i will watch it 100 times a day.
    when i finally see the movie i will think back to all the years of going on this site every day grabbing at the scraps of news the cruel world is throwing at us to keep us barley alive until the meal comes ;D

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    1. We need some equivalent of the word Trekkie for people like us.

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    2. my nomination ;P

      Warriors ;p
      Warries ( lame )
      Staries
      Jedies

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    3. Why not just call ourselves better?

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    4. cuz that has no reference to star wars at all

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  3. you just summed up my life dandino

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    1. haha pretty much everyone's life here ;p

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  4. There's something sweet knowing ILM was first put up by George to make star wars, then they did all the following star wars films and now they are arguably the worlds leading VFX company in the world- and NOW it's coming full circle with episode 7. Hope Kathleen Kennedy brings back some of the old model makers and wizards from the originals.

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    1. ^as of now, the old model makers and so-called wizards are the ONLY people who are coming back. It makes me wonder if they are going to be using CG at all.

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    2. Of course there will be CG. They're just said that they're using not going to rely on it for everything and are being more practical and using "every tool in the tool box".

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    3. I have seen footage of Abrams working with the cameramen. Sit around drinking coffee all day, he will not. Of course some things have to be CGI, and remember, all of those clone troopers in Episode III? Those were CG. So it's not like it can't be convincing.

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    4. "all of those clone troopers in Episode III? Those were CG. So it's not like it can't be convincing." Are you kidding? They were not very convincing at all. Some shots looked seriously awful. Then the ones in episode II looked like something out of a disney film. Luckily it's been 10 years and ILM has done brilliant work and can do that stuff much better. But even so, they should still just build the suits. At least build some for god sake. And then fine they can do the rest with CG. I wish they'd just leave the CG for stuff they can't do, or can't do realistically do in real life. When I found out that it's CG, or I can tell for myself it's CG when it could have easily be done in real life, it just spoils it.

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  5. Looking at all of the big budget sci-fi and fantasy film this year and next, it's no surprise.

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  6. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_mKVJeA-wTw&feature=youtu.be star wars Olympics haha

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  7. haha pew pew... around the 4 second mark is sounds like the announcer says "organa"

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