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September 28, 2012 | By Richard Verrier
Digital Domain, the once-storied visual effects house co-founded by director James Cameron, has emerged from bankruptcy with new Chinese and Indian owners vowing to expand the Los Angeles-based studio. Digital Domain Media Group announced Sunday that it had accepted a bid from Galloping Horse America, a division of a Beijing media company, and Reliance MediaWorks, part of the Indian conglomerate Reliance Group, to buy the company's visual effects studios in Venice, Calif., and Vancouver, Canada, for $30.2 million.
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ENTERTAINMENT
November 22, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
Visual effects artists are planning to show their colors next week when President Obama visits DreamWorks Animation SKG. Hundreds of visual effects artists who work at the Glendale studio are expected to wear green T-shirts to draw attention to the plight of their industry when Obama visits the campus Tuesday as part of a fundraising trip to the West Coast. At least that's the plan of a group of visual effects workers who have been trying to combat the effect of tax breaks and foreign subsidies on California's beleaguered visual effects industry.
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ENTERTAINMENT
September 7, 2012 | By Richard Verrier
Digital Domain Media Group, the parent company of the Venice-based visual effects house, said Friday that it was laying off most of the 320 employees at its new animation studio in Port St. Lucie, Fla., and shutting down the facility. The company also announced that Digitial Domain Chief Executive John Textor had resigned immediately. Digital Domain, which created visual effects for such movies as "Titantic,"  the "Transformers" movies and "Tron: Legacy," said the moves were part of a "strategic realignment" to refocus the company on its core business of creating visual effects digital effects, CG animation and digital production for the entertainment and advertising industries.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 26, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
Digital Domain, the visual-effects company that is co-producing the Lionsgate movie "Ender's Game," invested about $17 million in cash to help produce the much-anticipated movie, two former company executives said. In a highly unusual move, the pioneering visual-effects house -- co-founded by director James Cameron in 1993 -- is co-producing "Ender's Game," which hits theaters on Nov. 1, with OddLot Entertainment and Summit Entertainment. The big-screen adaptation of the popular 1985 book of the same name by Orson Scott Card, is among the most expensive independent movies ever made, with a budget of more than $100 million.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 25, 2012 | By Richard Verrier
Digital Domain's virtual version of Tupac Shakur has won a top honor at the world's largest advertising festival. The Venice-based visual effects studio announced Monday that the company had received a Titanium Award at the 59th annual Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity for its virtual performance of the late rap star Tupac Shakur. The award, presented Saturday in Cannes, France, recognizes the most groundbreaking work in the creative communications field. "Virtual 2Pac" was chosen by a jury of experts from the world's top advertising agencies as one of the year's most innovative ideas, from an initial field of more than 500 entrants, Digital Domain said in a statement.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 11, 2012 | By Richard Verrier
Financially struggling Digital Domain Media Group, owner of one of the entertainment industry's leading visual effects companies, said Tuesday it had filed a voluntary bankruptcy petition. Digital Domain said it was seeking protection from creditors under Chapter 11 of the federal bankruptcy code as part of an effort to "ensure the long-term future of its core business" and trigger a "sale of assets. " The company announced that it entered an agreement with Searchlight Capital Partners to sell Venice-base Digital Domain Productions, a subsidiary that operates core visual effects business for the film, television and advertising industries, for $15 million.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 12, 2012 | By August Brown
At this year's Coachella festival, Tupac Shakur was brought back to life via image-projection technology. But now a force even stronger than death threatens his recent resurrection -- bankruptcy. Digital Domain Media Group, the company behind the Tupac technology, said today in a press release that it had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection from its creditors. The 20-year-old company, which went public only in November, earned international attention for its Tupac project, and had long enjoyed clout in Hollywood for its work on big-budget features such as  "Titanic" and "Transformers.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 23, 2012 | By Richard Verrier
A joint venture led by Chinese film and TV company Galloping Horse has submitted a winning bid to acquire one of Hollywood's leading visual effects studios. Galloping Horse America, a division of the Beijing-based media company, has partnered with Reliance MediaWorks, the post-production company that is part of the Indian conglomerate Reliance ADA, to buy Digital Domain's visual effects studios in Venice and Vancouver, Canada, for $30.2 million. The bid potentially marks the latest acquisition of a U.S. media company by a Chinese firm.
BUSINESS
April 8, 2008 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
Digital Domain, one of Hollywood's top special-effects shops, is ramping up its plans to go public. The Venice-based creator of effects for films including "Titanic," "Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End" and "Transformers," hopes to sell 6 million shares at $12 to $14 each, according to an updated prospectus filed Monday with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company was bought in May 2006 for a reported $35 million by an investor group that included director Michael Bay. The plans for an initial public offering were first disclosed in December.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 18, 2012 | By Richard Verrier
The parent company of Venice-based visual effects house Digital Domain has settled a legal tussle with 3-D conversion rival Prime Focus World. Digital Domain, which created visual effects for the "Transformers" movies and "Tron: Legacy," has dropped a lawsuit it filed against Prime Focus in 2011 alleging that the Indian company had infringed on its patented technology for converting films from 2-D to 3-D. Under a settlement agreement announced...
ENTERTAINMENT
October 23, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
In the upcoming movie "Ender's Game," boy warrior Ender Wiggin faces a series of challenges as he embarks on a journey to battle insect-like creatures that threaten to destroy the planet. The movie also is a test for the film's co-producer, Digital Domain, the pioneering visual effects house co-founded by director James Cameron in 1993. The Venice studio is co-producing "Ender's Game" with OddLot Entertainment and Summit Entertainment. Taking such a major role in a live-action movie, which opens Nov. 1, is both rare for a visual effects company and a big gamble for Digital Domain, known for its work on the movies "Tron: Legacy" and "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 23, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
Hollywood's long-awaited digital makeover took another big step forward at the multiplex on Wednesday. A coalition of studios and theaters chains announced the launch of a digital and satellite delivery system to beam movies, as well promotional content and live events, directly into theaters. The Digital Cinema Distribution Coalition said its distribution platform "went live" last month and will serve 17,000 screens at 1,200 theater locations across North America this year. The coalition said it plans to distribute 31 films over its network this year, including "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire" from Lionsgate and "Frozen" from Walt Disney Animation Studios.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 12, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
Seeking to assuage concerns about management stability at Digital Domain, the new owners of the struggling visual effects company announced promotions of two veteran executives. Following the recent resignation of the respected Ed Ulbrich as chief executive officer, the Venice-based studio, which now goes by the name Digital Domain 3.0, said Monday it has promoted Terry Clotiaux to president of its feature film production division and Rich Flier to president of its advertising and games division.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 12, 2013 | By Dawn C. Chmielewski
The Producers Guild of America honored nine people for their contributions to the advancement of digital entertainment and storytelling in an event held in the Bel Air mansion of entrepreneur Elon Musk. The Digital VIP awards celebration attracted some Hollywood notables, including Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios Chief Creative Officer John Lasseter, Oscar-winning actor Morgan Freeman and Bill Westenhofer, the visual effects supervisor whose team at Rhythm & Hues won an Academy Award this year for work on "Life of Pi. " But it was an acrobat dubbed "Champagne Girl" who arguably received the most of the attention at Thursday's night celebration, dangling upside-down from a chandelier and pouring bubbly as the 100 or so guests snapped photos.  Indeed, the whole event had the atmospherics of a Baz Luhrmann film.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 28, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
[UPDATE: A hearing on the sale of Rhythm & Hues has been postponed until 10 a.m. Friday as bidding discussions continue.] A principal investor in China Lion, a Chinese film distribution company with offices in Los Angeles, is among the bidders involved in talks to acquire the Oscar-winning Hollywood visual-effects house that filed for bankruptcy protection last month. Jiang Yanming, the Beijing-based president of China Lion and one its three principal investors, is tied to a bid to acquire Rhythm & Hues through another company in which he has an interest, Brave Vision, sources close to the auction said.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 28, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
A company tied to the Los Angeles-based effects and animation studio Prana Studios has beat out other bidders to acquire Rhythm & Hues, the Oscar-winning visual effects house that filed for bankruptcy protection last month, a source close to the deal said Thursday night. The sale, terms of which were not disclosed, is subject to approval by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court at a hearing on Friday morning. If approved by the court, the sale would end a closely watched auction of one of Hollywood's best known visual effects companies whose financial woes have come to symbolize the challenges faced by an industry that was pioneered in California.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 10, 2012 | By Richard Verrier
Legend 3D, the 3-D conversion company based in San Diego, says it wants to hire some of the 300 workers recently laid off at Digital Domain's studio in Florida. Legend 3D founder and chief creative officer Barry Sandrew said his company would hire up to 200 workers in the next three months to work on several projects, and that he hopes many of the new hires will come from Florida. Digital Domain Media Group, owner of the Venice-based visual effects house, last week announced it was closing its new computer animation facility in Port St. Lucie and laying off most of its 320 employees.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 24, 2013 | By Richard Verrier, Los Angeles Times
This should be a golden age for visual effects in movies. Thanks to the box office success of movies such as "The Avengers" and "Life of Pi," demand for visual effects has never been greater. Studios are spending $100 million or more to put ever more stunning digital images on the big screen. But the companies that create the computer-generated imagery for those blockbusters are struggling as a rising tide of globalization and runaway production takes a toll on an industry that California pioneered.
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