Technicolor to Open Major VFX Facility in South Australia

Post-production and effects giant, Technicolor is to open a new facility in Adelaide, South Australia. Its initial focus will be delivering VFX for major film studios and streaming services, with a later expansion into virtual and augmented reality.

The visual effects unit, named Mill Film, involves an initial investment of $21 million (A$26 million) and cover 3,000 m2. “Mill Film will comprise an Adelaide Centre of Excellence and VFX Academy, together accommodating 500 people – ranging from technologists to artists – when running at full strength within five years,” the state government of South Australia said.

The state will provide up to $4.75 million (A$6 million) from its Economic Investment Fund to support the project. It said that it anticipates an economic benefit of around $200 million (A$253 million) over ten years.

The move was presaged in December last year by the announcement of an expansion of South Australia’s post production, digital and visual effects (PDV) rebate. The scheme is intended to attract large-budget PDV from blockbuster film projects, and can be combined with similar incentives from Australia’s federal government. The new scheme became operational last month.

“We picked Australia as an opportunity for expansion because it provides an ability to engage with a pool of proven creative talent; work with leading universities; and build on a modern and mature infrastructure that is critical for working on high-end VFX projects,” said Frederic Rose, Technicolor CEO, in a statement. “Investment Attraction South Australia worked with us to provide a complete investment package. The state government’s 10% PDV rebate, stackable with the federal government’s 30% incentive was an opportunity too good to ignore.”

“The film industry is one of the state’s fastest growing sectors,” said South Australia state premier Jay Weatherill in a statement. Also operational in the state are companies including: VFX firm Rising Sun Pictures (“Gravity,” “Harry Potter); facilities house Kojo (“Wolf Creek TV,” “The Babadook”); and television CGI firm Resin (“Philip K Dick’s: Electric Dreams”).

France-based Technicolor currently has facilities in Paris, London, Los Angeles, Montreal, New York, Vancouver, Bangalore and Shanghai. It recently worked on films including “The Shape of Water,” “Jungle Book,” and “Blade Runner 2049.”

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