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Open Source: Sony Pictures, Warner Bros. Join Academy Software Foundation (EXCLUSIVE)

Hollywood’s premier open source group is getting bigger: Sony Pictures Entertainment/Sony Pictures Imageworks, Warner Bros., the Blender Foundation and the Visual Effects Society (VES) are all joining the Academy Software Foundation, which was founded by the Linux Foundation and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in August.

“We are very excited to welcome all of our new members. The addition of Sony Pictures Entertainment, including Sony Pictures Imageworks, and Warner Bros. is proof that the motion picture industry is fully supportive of the Academy Software Foundation and the need for a neutral organization to host the open source projects that are critical to moviemaking,” said Academy Software Foundation executive director David Morin.

In conjunction with the new members, the foundation also announced its very first open source project: OpenVDB, a project for creating volumetric images that had until now been created and hosted by DreamWorks Animation, has become the Academy Software Foundation’s first hosted project. “It’s a critical technology developed by DreamWorks Animation that is used by many studios, and the developer community is very excited to maintain and contribute to the project,” said Morin.

The Linux Foundation and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences jointly launched the Academy Software Foundation in August to advance the use of open source projects in Hollywood. Founding members of the group included heavyweights like DreamWorks, Walt Disney Studios, Epic Games, Autodesk and Google Cloud, among others.

Some of the work of the group includes the promotion of open source within the industry, help with open source licensing issues as well as hosting open source projects like OpenVDB. The latter has been used for the production of major motion pictures including “Boss Baby” and “Trolls.”

“The Academy Software Foundation was founded based on the recognition of a growing need in the industry to support key open source projects,” said DreamWorks VP of global technology and Academy Software Foundation governing board member Andrew Pearce. “We believe in that cause and are enthused to demonstrate our support of the ASWF by contributing the award-winning OpenVDB as the first project.”

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