September 10, 2013
Various Tembo Tests from Chaz Williams on Vimeo.
In the past year, many great studios here stateside have closed shop. Rhythm and Hues specifically comes to mind. I loved working there. Not because of the location, or the building, or the technology, or the projects (although all of those things are great), at the end of the day it's the people that make a studio great. When a studio is forced to close down for whatever reason, you feel for your friends who are suddenly out of work.
The thing that sucked the most about Digital Domain Media Group going bankrupt was the hope of what they could have become was never realized. These FANTASTIC Animation Tests for their first fully-animated feature film clearly prove that and it just makes the situation that much more depressing. Their location was great. My sister lived in Port St. Lucie when DD opened up down in Florida and the cost of living there was so affordable. My experience in this industry has required my wife and I to move quite a bit and we were excited about even the possibility of me moving down there to live closer to family. Their new facility they constructed was state-of-the-art. My sister literally lived across the street and sent me pictures of their new studio as it was being built. On top of all that, Tembo seemed like such a great idea. I've talked to a few people who had been hired to work on that film and the story for the film seemed to have a lot of heart and character. Elephants are my FAVORITE animal!!!
So much excitement. So much anticipation. So much disappointment. I really wanted Digital Domain Media Group to succeed.