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Weta Digital
Type Private
Founded 1993
Headquarters Wellington, New Zealand
Key people Peter Jackson, Richard Taylor, Joe Letteri, Eileen Moran
Industry Visual effects, CGI animation
Website www.wetafx.co.nz

Weta Digital is a digital visual effects company based in Wellington, New Zealand. It was founded by Peter Jackson, Richard Taylor, and Jamie Selkirk in 1993 to produce the digital special effects for Heavenly Creatures. In 2007 Weta Digital’s Senior Visual Effects Supervisor, Joe Letteri, was also appointed as a Director of the company. Weta Digital has won several Academy Awards and BAFTAs.[1]

Weta Digital is part of a number of Peter Jackson co-owned companies in Wellington which includes Weta Workshop, Weta Productions, Weta Collectibles and Park Road Post Production.

Contents

Achievements

Weta Digital won awards for its visual effects for Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings film trilogy, including an Academy Award for Visual Effects for its work on The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001), The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002), The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King[2] (2003). Two years later, Weta Digital won another Academy Award for King Kong.[3]

Weta Digital has created a number of custom made in-house proprietary software to enable them to achieve groundbreaking visual effects. The scale of the battles required for The Lord of the Rings film trilogy led to the creation of MASSIVE, a program which allows the animation of huge numbers of agents: independent characters acting according to pre-set rules. [4] In King Kong there was a need to generate 1933 New York which led to the creation of CityBot, an application which was able to ‘build’ New York city to meet these requirements on a shot by shot basis. [5]

Kong’s fur also required the development of new simulation and modeling software. A set of tools that combined procedural and interactive techniques were generated, which allowed deformers to be built for adding wind to the 460 billion individual strands of fur and solving interaction with other surfaces. New shaders were written that accounted for the scattering of light from within each hair that added to the volumetric quality of the fur. Large chunks of his fur were ripped out and filled it with scars, blood, and the mud of Skull Island. Each frame of fur took 2 gigabytes of data. [6]

Recently, Weta modified MASSIVE to give life to the flora and fauna on Pandora at James Cameron's Avatar, for which the company did most of the visual effects. [7]

Film visual effects filmography

CG depiction of Gollum created by Weta Digital for the Lord of the Rings film trilogy
Richard Taylors 1991 ForryCon Display

References

  1. ^ "Another visual effects Oscar for Weta Digital?". Wellington.scoop. http://wellington.scoop.co.nz/?p=18885. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  2. ^ "Awards for The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King". IMDb. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0167260/awards. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  3. ^ "Awards for King Kong". IMDb. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0360717/awards. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  4. ^ "Massive Software". Massive Software. http://www.massivesoftware.com/weta-digital-uses-massive-software-to-ape-reality-on-king-kong/. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  5. ^ "Interview with Chris White on King Kong". cgarchitect. http://www.cgarchitect.com/upclose/article1_CW.asp. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  6. ^ "Bigger and Badder: How Weta Digital Bulked Up for King Kong". Studio Daily. http://www.studiodaily.com/main/technique/casestudies/5704.html. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  7. ^ Alex Ben Block (2009-12-10). "The creatures of 'Avatar' were 15 years in the making". The Hollywood Reporter. http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/content_display/news/e3ia3a7c2e70e62048d33459d19cbe990c9. Retrieved 2010-01-04.  
  8. ^ "Company credits for The Hobbit Part 1". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0903624/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  9. ^ "Company credits for The Adventures of Tintin: Secret of the Unicorn". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0983193/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  10. ^ "Company credits for Avatar". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0499549/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  11. ^ "Company credits for The Lovely Bones". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0380510/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  12. ^ "Company credits for District 9". IMDb. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1136608/companycredits. Retrieved 2009-08-21.  
  13. ^ "Company credits for The Day the Earth Stood Still". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0970416/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  14. ^ "Company credits for The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0499448/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  15. ^ "Company credits for Jumper". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0489099/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  16. ^ "Company credits for 30 Days of Night". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0389722/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  17. ^ "Company credits for The Water Horse". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0760329/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  18. ^ "Company credits for Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0486576/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  19. ^ "Company credits for Bridge to Terabithia". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0398808/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  20. ^ "Company credits for Eragon". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0449010/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  21. ^ "Company credits for X-Men: The Last Stand". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0376994/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  22. ^ "Company credits for King Kong". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0360717/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  23. ^ "Company credits for I, Robot". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0343818/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  24. ^ "Company credits for Van Helsing". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0338526/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  25. ^ "Company credits for The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0167260/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  26. ^ "Company credits for The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0167261/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  27. ^ "Company credits for The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0120737/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  28. ^ "Company credits for Contact". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0118884/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  29. ^ "Company credits for The Frighteners". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0116365/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  30. ^ "Company credits for Forgotten Silver". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0116344/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  
  31. ^ "Company credits for Heavenly Creatures". IMDb. http://akas.imdb.com/title/tt0110005/companycredits. Retrieved 2010-01-17.  

External links

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