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HP xw9300 

By S. D. Katz

The HP xw9300 is HP's latest smoker for digital content creation and the company's first workstation based on the AMD Opteron 200 chipset. When it comes...

Tornado Redux 

By Michael Goldman

ILM's Oscar-nominated visual effects work on The Mask (1994) was a keystone in the history of visual effects, according to Mike Schmitt, visual effects...

Perfecting a Pipeline 

By Michael Goldman

DreamWorks' latest CG film, Madagascar, represents the culmination of two important evolutionary steps for the studio's animation pipeline. First, Madagascar's...

Step by Step:
Kingdom Of Heaven
 

By Ellen Wolff

Modern visual effects techniques like CG sets, virtual extras, and digitally enhanced stunts are making it possible to mount period pieces on a scale that would have pleased Cecil B. DeMille. ...

Cinematic Sluggers 

By Michael Goldman

"There have been some great fight films, and I wasn't sure I wanted to take that on," says Ron Howard of his hesitation to direct Cinderella Man. "I found it daunting to face the challenge of trying to present boxing in a more compelling fashion than has been done in the past." A conversation with actor Russell Crowe, who stars in the film as the Depression-era fighter, James J. Braddock, however, convinced Howard to take up the challenge. ...

Is Realtime Real? Part 2 

By S. D. Katz

A movie and a game from the same title are like Siamese twins. They may share some vital organs, but they're still two distinct personalities...

Charting the Stars v.3 

By S. D. Katz

Movies are escape, and I've been closing my eyes to conjure impossible scenes of revenge, love, and possibility for more then a few decades. Designing movies is daydreaming, but most of the time ideas stay daydreams or become thumbnails and storyboards that fill closets and storage boxes with hope grown dim. If one were to imagine Xanadu, a place where dreams become real, it might be the Skywalker Ranch, the lavish playground and toy shop of George Lucas....

Step by Step: Extreme Decks 

By Ellen Wolff

Matte World Digital, Novato, Calif., is well-known for creating synthetic environments, amassing a long credit list that includes Cats & Dogs, The Last...

Tools for FX and DI 

By Robert Nederhorst, Digital Domain
By Michael Cioni, PlasterCITY Digital Post

Iridas: Making Effects Work Quick and Easy to Check Back in 2000, you couldn't find an app to do any type of professional, uncompressed frame playback...

Edit Integrate Review — Wondertouch ParticleIllusion 3 

By Frank McMahon

Particle animation, such as purple sparks flying from a wizard's glowing wand, can be a time-consuming and frustrating enterprise. In an artistic world,...

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