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pierrix
10-30-2005, 07:32 PM
Considered that the cg market is becoming more and more concentrated, with more and more big studios and the closing of small studios, what are, according to you, the reasons for making a joint venture with other studios to produce bigger productions, improve quality and optimize the working cycle and remain competitive?
For studio owners, would you joint venture with other studios, for what reasons, for what pros, considering the structure of the market that prefers bigger studios?

pierrix
10-30-2005, 08:50 PM
any replies?

spakman
10-31-2005, 02:37 AM
any replies?

I was thinkng something along the same lines. The way movie effect are spread out among different bidding VFX houses. I think the difficult part would lie at the hub of the network due to different real-time approaches. Been working on something like that. Got a couple infrastructure ideas.

peace d=^)

eek
10-31-2005, 02:47 AM
well a lot of the time one studio cant handle the amount of shots in a feature, for example 'Chronicals of Narnia' has 1400 vfx shots!

Well pretty much its all high high t1-2 connections for live-realtime stuff. One funny story was with weta, they had a direct connection to the uk, except where Jackson was staying. So they mounted lotr tt on ipods to where he was staying.

eek

spakman
10-31-2005, 03:08 AM
well a lot of the time one studio cant handle the amount of shots in a feature, for example 'Chronicals of Narnia' has 1400 vfx shots!

Well pretty much its all high high t1-2 connections for live-realtime stuff. One funny story was with weta, they had a direct connection to the uk, except where Jackson was staying. So they mounted lotr tt on ipods to where he was staying.

eek

ROTFL! :applause:

I could just see the U.S. post office mounting a resurgence, marketing their data networks, citing their 100% secure sneakernet - making ommercials about encrypted thumb drive data transfers, sent certified mail, instead of email attachements and inernet.

werd d=^)

Bonedaddy
10-31-2005, 05:00 AM
Working on huge projects with other studios is just a logistical and political nightmare. It's fine when there's clearly one boss for the entire show (in the case of VFX shops, the director/VFX supe/studio), but I imagine things would devolve very quickly if you have several studios on equal footing trying to team up and do something bigger.

The logistics of it, in terms of sharing data, having a similar pipeline, and being able to integrate the work done somewhere else (well, studio A made this great volumetric shader for houdini, but studio B has no houdini licenses and needs to do a sequence with that, with studio C's models, which were made in Lightwave, but everyone else is using Maya...) is a nightmare. Unless you've got some seriously well-thought-out roadmaps to be able to get everyone on the same page, I'd advise against it. Most shops have enough trouble handling all their work even when it's all located within the same building.

pierrix
10-31-2005, 12:21 PM
I agree with you, Bonedaddy, but considered that studios set up an optimal and complex web platform to solve organization and logistic issues, what are the reasons to joint venture with other studios, considering the structure of the market and the common problems of small/medium and sometimes large studios?
And would you like to joint venture with 1-2-several studios to grow together? Why yes, why not?

pierrix
11-02-2005, 04:48 PM
any comments?

spakman
11-03-2005, 02:28 AM
I agree with you, Bonedaddy, but considered that studios set up an optimal and complex web platform to solve organization and logistic issues, what are the reasons to joint venture with other studios, considering the structure of the market and the common problems of small/medium and sometimes large studios?
And would you like to joint venture with 1-2-several studios to grow together? Why yes, why not?

Try a wiki first. See how that goes. Then move on to more complete options.

pierrix
11-03-2005, 10:44 AM
have you ever heard about ibm workplace, @task, etc...?

eek
11-03-2005, 04:23 PM
http://bioware.pandemicstudios.com/ (http://bioware.pandemicstudios.com/).

eek

pierrix
11-03-2005, 04:30 PM
yes, i posted also in that thread...

eek
11-03-2005, 05:50 PM
but i work there.:)


eek

beaker
11-03-2005, 07:06 PM
Considered that the cg market is becoming more and more concentrated, with more and more big studios and the closing of small studiosI think you are mistaken. There are more an more small to medium studios. There haven't been any new large studios in about 5 years. ESC came and went in the blink of an eye, Cinesite in LA closed down, Mill Film vfx division closed down. ESC was the last large studio to open and that was almost 5 years ago.

Small studios are closing because they are started by artists with little or no business knowledge and/or have no idea how to deal with clients. They carelessly throw around money, buying stuff they don't need and severly underbid other companies which leads to them not being able to pay the bills and/or they greatly underestimate the amount of work or experience it takes to do a large set of shots.

pierrix
11-03-2005, 07:11 PM
the market (both cg and entertainment) needs more and more complex and sophisticated productions (think to next-gen games). Small studios cannot assure the quality requested to be competitive, because of the lack of human and financial resources.

Bonedaddy
11-03-2005, 07:31 PM
What people don't seem to realize is that the smaller studios aren't necessarily that much worse than the big ones. They don't just appear out of nowhere -- they are generally started by guys who have worked at the big boys, and want to do their own thing. Of course, there are exceptions, and plenty of yabos who don't know the first thing about anything starting their own work, but just because a place is small, I would not make the assumption that they're a bunch of rubes. Their resources may be more limited, but their talent may be just as good, if not better. There's no place to hide at a small place. Big places can end up having a lot of dead weight.

beaker
11-03-2005, 07:51 PM
the market (both cg and entertainment) needs more and more complex and sophisticated productions (think to next-gen games). Small studios cannot assure the quality requested to be competitive, because of the lack of human and financial resources.Thats a lod of BS. You can't just make a blanket statement like that. There are tons of small to medium places that deliver hundreds of shots for many of the movies out there. It really just depends the work being done. Crap, I worked on many 100 million dollar movies where 5 of us did 120 shots cramped in a little office.

pierrix
11-03-2005, 09:06 PM
Sorry to everybody for any misunderstandings...
I didn't want to say that big studios are good and small/medium studios are bad.
I want to say that for small/medium studios is difficult to work on very big projects and to assure adequate levels of quality in short times (like in videogames production).
Small studios have also less resources (financial and human) to compete with a market like entertainment mkt that wants more and more complex production.
beaker, I agree with you, each small studio can work on a piece of a production, but I'm considering that producing a next-gen videogame for a studio with 10/15 people is very very difficult.
In few words, I want to say that a small studio has more chances to fail than a big studios and ceteris paribus, a small studio is less competitive than a big studio.

leigh
11-03-2005, 09:29 PM
I want to say that for small/medium studios is difficult to work on very big projects and to assure adequate levels of quality in short times (like in videogames production).
Small studios have also less resources (financial and human) to compete with a market like entertainment mkt that wants more and more complex production.


Not true. The size of a studio and its team does not necessarily dicate the complexity of the projects that they can undertake.

Pierrix, have you ever even worked in any studio, big or small? Because it sounds like you have absolutely no knowledge whatsoever on the market you're talking about, and no experience of it either. You're making broad statements on assumptions.

pierrix
11-03-2005, 09:40 PM
I know the entertainment market and I can assure that small studios won't be competitive in creating high quality next-gen games, and I'm not alone to say that (check the statements of Eidos CEO)

Leigh, don't tell me that a 5 artists studio can undertake the production of ALL the vfx of The Lord of Rings (in acceptable times...)...

Also, big studios have more resources to spend in promotion, marketing, visibility. A company that wants to produce a big commercial signs with the big studio (not always, but...), because of its credibility that comes from marketing.

Bonedaddy
11-03-2005, 10:29 PM
I know the entertainment market and I can assure that small studios won't be competitive in creating high quality next-gen games, and I'm not alone to say that (check the statements of Eidos CEO)

Leigh, don't tell me that a 5 artists studio can undertake the production of ALL the vfx of The Lord of Rings (in acceptable times...)...

Also, big studios have more resources to spend in promotion, marketing, visibility. A company that wants to produce a big commercial signs with the big studio (not always, but...), because of its credibility that comes from marketing.

I think you just need to clarify your argument. Are you talking games? Visual effects? Animation? They're different beasts, and when you simply say "entertainment," you open yourself up for criticism.

From what little I know of games, you're probably right, there isn't much room for small shops to thrive. Visual effects and animation, though, I am not sure. Small houses get a lot of commercial work, more than the big ones. Radium, for instance, is pretty tiny and they do almost only commercials. I think your commercial argument is flawed. You don't need a hundred guys to do a 10 second spot.

As regards effects, I have worked for the most part at smaller shops, and we consistently turn around hundreds of shots, usually of fair complexity, in good time. We may not be able to compete in the R&D realm, with specialized stuff like fluids and whatnot, but even that's changing. Hydraulx is pretty small and was able to take on a lot of the Day After Tomorrow stuff. One of the shows I'm working on now has some pretty complex R&D type stuff, and we're handling it fine.

And as regards animation, well, half the shows on Adult Swim are done by like 5 people. I think this area, more than any other, is where your argument falls apart. There's tons of wiggle room for small houses to do well in the animation market. Veggie tales? Aqua Teen? Homestar Runner?

leigh
11-03-2005, 11:53 PM
Leigh, don't tell me that a 5 artists studio can undertake the production of ALL the vfx of The Lord of Rings (in acceptable times...)...

I didn't tell you that. Read my post again.

beaker
11-04-2005, 01:13 AM
Also, big studios have more resources to spend in promotion, marketing, visibility. A company that wants to produce a big commercial signs with the big studio (not always, but...), because of its credibility that comes from marketing.You have to remember that most movies these days aren't done all in 1 house anymore. Even the first 2 LOTR movies were done by multple houses outside Weta. DD, Sony, R&H and a few other houses worked on those films. Often times 10-20 houses will be on a show and because of politics, only 3-5 of those companies actually get their names in the credits.

pierrix
11-04-2005, 09:57 AM
anyway I was talking about entertainment market = videogames market... but cg is not too different...

Finally, what I want to focus with my thread is the reasons to joint venture with an other studio. If you are owner of a studio, will you jv with an other studio to grow together?

In my opinion, a studio (either game or vfx,commercial,cg studio) could grow better if he shares is forces with an other studio/studios (if many...) to improve quality, get more contacts and contract opportunities, etc, etc. In few words, in case of jv (if well organized and planned...), 2+2=5.

leigh
11-04-2005, 05:09 PM
In my opinion, a studio (either game or vfx,commercial,cg studio) could grow better if he shares is forces with an other studio/studios (if many...) to improve quality, get more contacts and contract opportunities

Ummm... in the film industry the VFX are almost always done by multiple studios. However they do not split the profits or anything like that, and why should they? They're businesses and they operate to make profits, and to out-bid other studios. If they're coping perfectly well doing that, then what's the point in changing?

I really see no merit to your suggestion of working together.

eek
11-04-2005, 05:43 PM
framestore|cfc.


eek

beaker
11-04-2005, 05:44 PM
In my opinion, a studio (either game or vfx,commercial,cg studio) could grow better if he shares is forces with an other studio/studios (if many...) to improve quality, get more contacts and contract opportunities, etc, etc. In few words, in case of jv (if well organized and planned...), 2+2=5.Most everyone knows everyone in this biz(especially the high ups). So when you get too much work or you need people, the first thing you do is call your other friends at other studios for help. Many companies will subcontract out work to other companies if they don't have the time.

This has been going on for ages. Working together with other studios isn't anything new.

pierrix
11-04-2005, 05:49 PM
Ok, let's go on vfx studios...
Now, tell me a reason (or more..) for which a studio that produces commercials, animation, etc, etc. should jv with one on more studios.

dogyears
11-04-2005, 09:52 PM
Reminds me of Adam Smith's pin factory - fancy that. One guy sits at his terminal all day doing ... fur. Nah.

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