Imagework in progress

A look at 15 years of achievements that have shaped the company and the industry.

1992
Imageworks opens up shop in borrowed offices on the Columbia TriStar Pictures lot, with five people and its first computer. Original work is previsualization and titling.

1993
With fewer than 40 employees, the company moves on to compositing and image replacement on films like "In the Line of Fire."

1994
Uses innovative composit work to create the famed scene in "Speed" where a bus jumps over a freeway overpass

1995
Ken Ralston joins the company.

1996
The company creates all of the digital elements for the stop-motion animated release "James and the Giant Peach," a first step into computer-generated animation.

1997
Imageworks creates the digital snake in "Anaconda," an early CG character.
With "Starship Troopers," for which the company received its first Oscar nomination for best visual effects in 1998, Imageworks reaches a new milestone with 400 shots of complex, multilayered visual effects.

"Contact" is Imageworks' first film with director Robert Zemeckis, who followed visual effects supervisor Ken Ralston to Imageworks. The film highlights what will become Imageworks' signature: invisible visual effects, as well as a spectacular four-minute opening shot through space to the center of the universe.
Tim Sarnoff joins the company.

1998
For "Hollow Man," Imageworks creates a very detailed, anatomically accurate digital human being, scoring another Oscar nomination for best visual effects.

1999
"Stuart Little," which integrates a digital mouse with a human family, is a major breakthrough for the company and earns it its third Oscar nomination. A leap forward in digital character animation, Stuart also sports photorealistic fur and cloth, both the results of hefty code-writing by Imageworks.

For "Snow Falling on Cedars," Imageworks provides the snow that wasn't falling on location in Vancouver.

2000
"Cast Away" is the pinnacle of Imageworks' skill in invisible effects. Although the film features a whopping 600 visual effects shots, nobody thinks of it as a visual effects film.

Under the direction of Yair Landau, Sony Pictures Digital Entertainment is formed, aligning the comany's digital production capability.

2001
Pioneers the use of CG actors in "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone"

2002
"Spider-Man," "Stuart Little 2," and "The Chubbchubbs!" are in production at the same time, pushing the pipeline and the artists. "The Chubbchubbs!" which began as a test of the company's production pipeline for CG animation, scores Imageworks its first Oscar, for best animated short.

"Stuart Little 2" qualifies in the animated feature category.

"Spider-Man," the first film in what is to become a hugely successful franchise, features a CG city and a digital superhero intercut seamlessly with the real actor. It earns an Oscar nomination for visual effects. The formation of Sony Pictures Animation is announced.

2004
"Spider-Man 2" is a step up in digital-human work. The CG versions of Doc Ock and Spider-Man can handle digital close-up. The film wins the Oscar for best visual effects.
"The Polar Express" introduces Sony's Image Motion, a system that simultaneously captures facial and body movements. Imageworks also prepares "Express" for release in IMAX 3-D; it's the first animated feature on the stereoscopic big screen.

2005
"The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe" features Imageworks' digital animals and digital environments and earns the company another Oscar nomination.

2006
"Monster House," another performance-capture animated feature, is released in theaters -- and in 176 stereoscopic cinemas powered by Real D.
"Open Season" is the first CG key-framed animated feature out of Imageworks for Sony Pictures Animation. Imageworks also created a IMAX 3-D version of the film.


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