One of the Tangent Animation studio’s co-founders, Jeff Bell, shared a bit more technical production info:
[quote=]I cant talk too much about the movie prior to its release, but I can confirm a few things on the technical and production side.As people surmised, this is indeed 100% Blender for the core work, including Cycles for all rendering, supplemented with other software in a few areas, specifically:Substance Painter and Photoshop were used for a good chunk of the surfacing and texturing work, with Blender paint tools used for the balance.
Houdini and Fume FX were used to generate VDB and Alembic data for import and render in Cycles. Stefan Werner and Luca Rood (who did a fantastic job on improving the cloth sim in Blender that was used heavily in NextGen) worked on adding proper support for VDB voxel data, and improving the Alembic support, including importation and exposing attribute data for use in Cycles material networks.
On the development side:Stefan also did some incredible work on volumetric rendering efficiency, adding the Intel Embree core to Cycles, and generally improving the Cycles renderer for user on NextGen. Render times were extremely reasonable and manageable, even with full 3D blur and in-camera DOF used throughout the filmWe added a number of other features to Blender to benefit the film, such as support for Cryptomattes (we render everything in camera, so Cryptomattes are a godsend in compositing), improved animation features, and a variety of other features in various areas of Blender
Tangent itself has never been a Maya studio, though a previous incarnation of the studio used Maya. I was one of the first animators to work on Maya at the R&D phase back in 1994-1998, and Ive utilized Maya as the core piece in 5 different pipelines in various studios, so to switch to Blender is a big deal for us. The ability to redirect spending from commercial software to custom development is huge for our projects.
We will be working with the Blender Institute on re-incorporating our changes into Blender where possible, as we believe that its important for the community at large, and we welcome others to improve on the work weve done so that we can benefit from those improvements on our upcoming films.[/quote]