Vancouver Turns Up Cloud Computing Horsepower For Hollywood

"Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1" (2010)
Courtesy of Warner Bros.

The 2010 film garnered nominations for art direction and visual effects.

The Canadian city has unveiled RenderCloud, a local server farm for data-hungry animation and special effects projects by studios that could otherwise go to London or New Zealand.

TORONTO – Vancouver is revving up its computing horsepower to allow Hollywood studios to more speedily render data-intensive animation and special effects in the clouds.

A consortium of Vancouver-based production, technology and media companies on Friday unveiled RenderCloud, a local server farm that will allow studios to ramp up their production lines on processor-hungry projects.

Vancouver is also hoping its ultrafast RenderCloud server will allow the west-coast city, already enjoying the advantages of close proximity to Los Angeles, compete with emerging global production centers in the UK, Australia and New Zealand.

British Columbia’s digital tax credits have allowed Vancouver to attract 3D movie, animation, special dffects and gaming production from Los Angeles, but it’s feeling the heat of competition from abroad.

“The opening of RenderCloud makes us competitive with such cities as London and New Zealand, and puts Vancouver into consideration for the next generation of Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings productions,” Catherine Winder, president and executive producer of Rainmaker Entertainment, said Friday.