DIVE VFX Staffs Up In New York; Tapped For VFX On New Event Series “Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey”


Last Updated: March 12, 2014 8:15 pm GMT
(New York & Philadelphia, United States--March 12, 2014) DIVE, the visual effects division of ShootersINC, has staffed up their New York studio to take on multiple visual effects projects including the new, 13-part event series, “Cosmos: A SpaceTime Odyssey,” presented by FOX and National Geographic Channel. The series made a historic debut on ten 21st Century Fox networks on Sunday, March 9th. A follow-up to the 1980s television series, “Cosmos: A Personal Voyage,” which was presented by Carl Sagan, the new series’ host is Neil deGrasse Tyson, with Executive Producers Ann Druyan, Seth MacFarlane, Mitchell Cannold, and Brannon Braga. DIVE is one of 12 visual effects studios around the globe working on the new series.

To view a trailer from “Cosmos: A SpaceTime Odyssey”:

The extraordinary project came to DIVE via Cosmos VFX Producer Addie Manis who had worked with the DIVE team on the feature film, “The Road,” and Cosmos CG Supervisor Luke McDonald. The team from DIVE is collaborating closely with show VFX Supervisor Rainer Gombos. “We are thrilled to be part of this historic event series,” explains Bob Lowery, VP of Business Development for DIVE. “While the project began in our Philadelphia studio, we were able to staff up our New York studio to accommodate the ongoing work on this series, as well as several other projects DIVE is currently working on. Our team, led by VFX Supervisor Ed Mendez, is working hard to create scientifically accurate while cinematically moving imagery.”

For the new “Cosmos” series, DIVE’s biggest contribution is in upcoming Episodes 5, 8, 9 and 10. The visual effects team was called on to provide dimensionalization of star clusters, galaxies and nebula. They also brought to life a rendering of a pre-historic animal. Lastly, the DIVE team created an animated rendering of Planet Earth to illustrate geologic volatility.

According to DIVE VFX Supervisor Ed Mendez, for the dimensionalization, the client provided his team with photographs of space. “We separated out specific aspects of the photographs on individual layers, and created clean plates of the imagery,” he explains. “We then researched the distance of specific stars using the American Museum of Natural History's Digital Universe. Using that information, we animated different layers of the photographs. Stars closer to us moved in perspective relative to more distant stars. We also added camera moves to the photographs. The end result is that the viewer feels as though they are traveling through space.”

According to Mendez, the most challenging aspect to the project was making sure all of the shots are “scientifically accurate.” He elaborates: “We did a lot of research, plus followed the guidance of the client's Scientific Advisor. We created 2.5D Animation, 3D Animation, some paintwork, and compositing -- all to a very high production level. We used the same techniques used in creating stereo conversion of films. We just took it a step further and animated the results,” concludes Mendez.

VFX Company: DIVE
VFX Supervisor: Edwardo Mendez
VFX Producer: Ian Markiewicz
VFX Executive: Producer: Bob Lowery
VFX Production Supervisor: Andy Williams
VFX Editors: Bryan Baker, Lucas Andrei
2D Lead Artist: Ruben Rodas
Digital Artists: Tyler Lockard, Colton Miller, Michal Finegold, Alex Scollay, David DeLeon

DIVE, http://www.divevisual.com is the visual effects and picture finishing division of ShootersINC, with offices in New York City and Philadelphia. DIVE creates high-end Visual Effects for feature films, television shows and commercials. One of the east coast’s premier visual effects and finishing companies, DIVE works in collaboration with content creators on Visual Effects, Digital Intermediate and Main Titles by coupling creative continuity and expertise with cutting edge pipeline and workflow.

ShootersINC, http://www.shootersinc.com is a fully integrated content company that blends talent, technology and client service to provide a superior level of quality and creativity. We provide production, editorial, visual effects, graphic design, finishing and sound design for advertising, television, feature film and branded entertainment.

ShootersNYC, http://www.shootersnyc.com is the New York content creation division of ShootersINC, We offer a unique integrated approach by providing production and post with our directors, creative editors, visual effects artists and graphic designers for advertising, television, web/digital and feature films.

ShootersTV, http://www.shooterstv.com develops and produces non-fiction television for clients up and down the channel lineup. They're a division of the ShootersINC companies and one of the producers of Food Network's hit “Restaurant: Impossible.” With mature businesses in advertising, branded entertainment, visual effects, and on-air promotion, they offer clients added value with a 360-degree approach to content creation during every phase of development, production and marketing. ShootersINC clients include A&E, Lexus, The Weinstein Company, and Scripps Networks Interactive.


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