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VFX, Animation Studio Framestore Launches Pre-Production Services Unit (EXCLUSIVE)

Visual effects and animation studio Framestore, which won Oscars for “The Golden Compass,” “Gravity” and “Blade Runner 2049,” and whose recent work includes “Avengers: Endgame” and “Spider-Man: Far From Home” in movies, and “His Dark Materials” and “Watchmen” in TV, has launched FPS, which offers a suite of pre-production services.

The move sees the company’s previs, virtual production, techvis and postvis services built out, and aligned with Framestore’s art department, virtual production team and R&D unit, and integrated with the company’s VFX and animation teams. The move builds on its previous work, and the knowledge gained during its eight-year joint venture with visualization company The Third Floor in London.

The team behind FPS (Framestore Pre-production Services) is led by Alex Webster, who joins as managing director, pre-production services, from running The Third Floor. He will report to Fiona Walkinshaw, Framestore’s global managing director, film.

Webster said: “This work aligns Framestore’s singular VFX and animation craft with a granular understanding of the visualization industry. It marries the company’s extraordinary legacy in VFX with established visualization and emergent virtual production processes, supported by bleeding-edge technology and dedicated R&D resource to inform the nimble approach which our clients need.

“Consolidating our pre-production services represents a significant creative step forward, and one that will see us bring new people, skills and ideas to Framestore and its clients.”

Chief creative officer Tim Webber added: “Pre-production is a crucial stage for filmmakers. From mapping out environments, to developing creatures and characters, to helping plot action sequences it provides unparalleled freedom in terms of seeing how a story unfolds or how characters interact with the worlds we create.

“Bringing together our technical innovation with an understanding of filmmaking, we want to offer a bespoke service for each film and each individual to help tell compelling, carefully-crafted stories.”

Framestore CEO William Sargent said: “Our clients’ needs are as varied as the projects they bring to us, with some needing a start-to-finish service that begins with concept art and ends in post while others want a bespoke, standalone solution to specific creative challenges, be that in early stage concepting, through layout and visualisation or in final animation and VFX. It makes sense to bring all these services in-house.”

Pictured left to right: Tim Webber, chief creative officer; Fiona Walkinshaw, global managing director, film; Alex Webster, managing director, pre-production services.

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