DreamWorks: Advanced Technologies Bring Movies to Life
The famed animation studio is moving to cloud systems to supply some of the rendering for its 3D films, including its latest, Kung Fu Panda 2.Imagine a company spending millions of dollars to buy workstations, software, servers, networking and storage equipment for everyone working on one large project. Then imagine recycling those systems and buying everything new for the next project. This may seem like IT overkill, but it's a way of life at Glendale, Calif.-based DreamWorks Animation, creator of such highly successful movies as the Shrek and Madagascar series, Monsters and Aliens and the Kung Fu Panda series. It's also what has helped keep the company on the cutting edge of technology animation.
At DreamWorks, a new movie automatically means fresh Hewlett-Packard z800 workstations, new software, additional storage and other equipment for about 500 highly trained artists and supervisors. An animated movie-whether or not it's 3D-takes four to five years to produce, and the equipment stays with the production from start to finish, so the studio gets its money's worth from its investments.
Central characters from DreamWorks Animation's "Kung Fu Panda 2" are (L-R) Tigress, Po (the Kung Fu Panda), and Monkey.