Intel, DreamWorks form alliance

Partnering to develop 3-D technology and techniques

Intel and DreamWorks Animation have entered into a strategic alliance aimed at developing 3-D technology and techniques.

The deal combines Intel's visual computing tools with DWA's expertise in content creation. Intel technology will be used to evolve DWA's production infrastructure, including its stereoscopic 3-D pipeline. DWA also will act as a test site for developing Intel technology. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The initiative begins immediately and will affect productions beginning with "Monsters vs. Aliens," DWA's first stereoscopic 3-D release, due March 27. DreamWorks Animation has been bullish about the 3-D format, having committed to producing all of its feature films in stereoscopic 3-D beginning next year.

As the first step, Intel will provide its chips for all of DWA's servers and workstations used to create and render animation. These will replace currently installed AMD chips.

Meanwhile, Intel engineers will develop DWA's software applications for use with its processors.

"Technology plays a significant role in enabling our artists to tell great stories," DWA CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg said. "By utilizing Intel's industry-leading computing products, we will create a new and innovative way for moviegoers to experience our films in 3-D."

DWA also will house a test site for future Intel technology. That initially will include future chip technology, currently called Mehalem, and a developing multicore architecture code-named Larrabee.

"Technology like Larrabee will give horsepower required to achieve 3-D in the home," said Nick Knupffer, global communications manager at Intel.

Intel expects its developing Larrabee technology to be used to offer 3-D on platforms including home theater, personal computers, video games, online environments and mobile devices.

The Intel alliance does not have impact on DWA's high-profile technology relationship with HP.