Why does the UK lack CG Animation Studios who produce full feature length CGI?

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Old 09 September 2012   #31
Two movies have been produced and made in Spain. Planet 51 budget was about 55 million euros, and the last one called Tadeo Jones is about 10 million. Probably the two movies have been done in part with help of film subsidies. Anyway, there is a reasonably good talent pool in here, particularly character animation artists and rendering developers. Besides, there seems to be producers who have enough ambition for this kind of projects. Technically good enough, the only thing wrong about those movies is the plot, they are just awful in that regard. Why is so difficult to round up a good story in animation movies? don't do that mistake if you ever produce an entire movie in the UK. Please.
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Last edited by Samo : 09 September 2012 at 06:06 PM.
 
Old 09 September 2012   #32
Raffaele and Paul have kinda summed up what I was going to say, but I do think the available talent pool does play a big part. From a UK view, I'm not sure we're turning out quite enough high quality character animators to really tool up a studio.
By saying that though, I don't mean to talk down the good schools that we do have here, they are very good. However in the UK there are currently only nine industry (Skillset) accredited animation courses, and when you combine that with the Livingstone-hope skills review of video games and visual effects last year, I think that does tell a story.

The UK has some good studios doing some excellent character work, but I tend to see just a little bit more directly character/animation driven work from mainland Europe, be it for film and/or tv - commercials or tv shows.
 
Old 09 September 2012   #33
Thanks for all your answers! You're all awesome. But Bellsey, there is no way that having 9 skillset-accredited schools has anything to do with it. As someone else said, we just lack balls.(Words to that affect, anyway)

I'm going to change this. Give me 12 years and remember the name.
 
Old 09 September 2012   #34
Originally Posted by Splicage: As someone else said, we just lack balls.


No, we lack the budget. Or did you not really read all the replies properly at all? :/
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Old 09 September 2012   #35
Originally Posted by Splicage: Thanks for all your answers! You're all awesome. But Bellsey, there is no way that having 9 skillset-accredited schools has anything to do with it. As someone else said, we just lack balls.(Words to that affect, anyway)

I'm going to change this. Give me 12 years and remember the name.


It's perhaps true that we may lack budget (and balls), but even with budget, you still have to fill your studio with people, and good people at that.

The point I was trying to make that considering the actual number of media/CG/animation/whatever courses we have in the UK, only having 9 that are actually accredited in producing students of any employable calibre, really isn't a great situation.
This was where my link to the report came in, it basically says that from a UK perspective, we actually have a skills shortage in this sector.
 
Old 09 September 2012   #36
I believe it can be done even with limited budget and limited number of people involved, you just need to know your limitations which means you will sacrifice something.
I was in Norway last year working on animated feature, the budget was not sky high as I understood but never the less they did not want to race with Hollywood.
At the end of the day it was enjoyable experience and I believe people will watch it and will enjoy it.
As for the numbers I estimate that 10 to 15 artists were involved in the project, and it is close to finish, looking forward to the next years premiere
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Old 09 September 2012   #37
Originally Posted by Splicage: I'm going to change this. Give me 12 years and remember the name.

Andrew is a fairly common name, and not too hard to remember, I can promise I'll try.
Should we have a second name to keep in mind too, or twelve years from now you will write, produce and direct by your nickname, or first name, alone?
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Old 09 September 2012   #38
Originally Posted by LuckyBug: I believe it can be done even with limited budget and limited number of people involved, you just need to know your limitations which means you will sacrifice something.
I was in Norway last year working on animated feature, the budget was not sky high as I understood but never the less they did not want to race with Hollywood.
At the end of the day it was enjoyable experience and I believe people will watch it and will enjoy it.
As for the numbers I estimate that 10 to 15 artists were involved in the project, and it is close to finish, looking forward to the next years premiere


Very good Aleksander! This is exactly what I was referring to.

We don't need to make things at Mega-Mountain levels all the time.

And I'm not saying that's the end-goal either. But everybody has to start somewhere. Although I understand doing the "small stuff" isn't for everyone.
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Old 09 September 2012   #39
Originally Posted by LuckyBug: I believe it can be done even with limited budget and limited number of people involved, you just need to know your limitations which means you will sacrifice something.
I was in Norway last year working on animated feature, the budget was not sky high as I understood but never the less they did not want to race with Hollywood.
At the end of the day it was enjoyable experience and I believe people will watch it and will enjoy it.
As for the numbers I estimate that 10 to 15 artists were involved in the project, and it is close to finish, looking forward to the next years premiere


There are a number of small studio created (and even single person) features that have been made. The problem is making something of substantial quality and appeal to the mass market in order to create a sustainable studio. Quality requires time and not just in production but in the story development phase. Time generally equates to money in almost all circumstances. Good features also requires flexibility which again translates more-or-less directly to budget. You need lots of talented people for a long time. Even I, with my craptastic business sense, can see how investors would find long productions with big budgets and a single product a scary thing.

What's interesting to me is that although the tools we use have gotten better at accommodating artists over the years and yet the films we're discussing seem to take as long (if not longer) than their predecessors did to create. I remember when I was starting out and a friend at a university was talking about having access to a pretty awesome render farm and I said "cool, must make work so much faster" too which they replied "nah, it just makes our frames that much bigger".

I wonder if there's a point where the quality of the tools will ever catch up with the quality requirements of the final output? If that happens then I would imagine the costs would come down, if only marginally, as that seems to make some logical sense.
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Old 09 September 2012   #40
Originally Posted by Bellsey: It's perhaps true that we may lack budget (and balls), but even with budget, you still have to fill your studio with people, and good people at that.


Largely depends on the scale and complexity of the production. But most large animation and vfx studios around the world are staffed by fairly internationally diverse crews.

Framestore was able to crew up for Despereaux while still working on a few other projects (I seem to remember Prince Caspian, Wanted and TDK going on in Soho at that time).

Aardman was able to produce a CG feature and make a Stop-Motion feature (with a significant amount of vfx work) at the same time.

Certainly crewing up for an animated film is no easy task. But it's not a huge stumbling block to getting one made in the UK.
 
Old 09 September 2012   #41
I watch a lot of UK made movies from the 50s-70s. They received money from Hollywood but most if not all the creative personnel were UK residents. Definitely wasnt a lack of ability just money to keep doing that after the 70s (though the revival of studios like Hammer have been in name only).
.
There have been some prominent FX artists out of the UK so I am sure there are a few animators (Richard Williams mostly worked in the UK and had a studio there I believe-I think Who Framed Roger Rabbit had a number of UK based animators working on it)
 
Old 09 September 2012   #42
Originally Posted by leigh: No, we lack the budget. Or did you not really read all the replies properly at all? :/


Of course I did. But pretty much all studios started from nothing. And their budget came from bigger companies later on, e.g Fox and Blue Sky
 
Old 09 September 2012   #43
Originally Posted by ThE_JacO: Andrew is a fairly common name, and not too hard to remember, I can promise I'll try.
Should we have a second name to keep in mind too, or twelve years from now you will write, produce and direct by your nickname, or first name, alone?

Muoio. Andrew Muoio
 
Old 09 September 2012   #44
Originally Posted by Splicage: Of course I did. But pretty much all studios started from nothing. And their budget came from bigger companies later on, e.g Fox and Blue Sky


With all due respect, you don't really have a clue as to how studios are formed or run, or how film budgeting or production works. People have explained in this thread but you've ignored it.
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Old 09 September 2012   #45
Originally Posted by leigh: With all due respect, you don't really have a clue as to how studios are formed or run, or how film budgeting or production works. People have explained in this thread but you've ignored it.


Well if I had that attitude I'd get nowhere. Everyone seems to be so complacent with their current jobs and no one wants to change the industry. I haven't ignored anyone's posts at all, but nor am going to give up on what I want to do.

And if don't have a clue, then I will learn.
 
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