Autodesk, Inc. has completed the acquisition of substantially all the assets of Skymatter Limited, the New Zealand-based, privately held developer of Mudbox 3D modeling software. On August 6, 2007, Autodesk announced an agreement to purchase Skymatter’s assets. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

This acquisition expands Autodesk’s offering for the film, television and game market segments, while providing additional growth opportunities for other design disciplines, such as 3D automotive and industrial design. Mudbox has shaped photorealistic creatures for the blockbuster film King Kong, as well as upcoming films The Golden Compass, Fred Claus and Inkheart.

The Sarah Connor Chronicles creator Josh Friedman has confirmed that the series will premiere on Monday, January 14 at 8/7c on Fox.

The offshoot from the Terminator franchise will be bookended by the three-hour seventh season launch of 24 – Sunday, January 13 at 8/7c & 9/8c and Monday, January 14 at 9/8c.

The Sarah Connor Chronicles takes place after the events depicted in Terminator 2: Judgment Day and follows Sarah Connor (Lena Headey, 300), a modern warrior and loving single mom to 15-year-old son John (Thomas Dekker, Heroes).

Trolltech announced that Lucasfilm Ltd., one of the world’s leading digital entertainment companies, will use Qt to develop their digital entertainment software. This new
arrangement covers use of the software by Industrial Light & Magic, LucasArts, Skywalker Sound, and Lucasfilm Animation.

Qt sets the standard for high-performance, cross-platform software development. Some of the world’s largest software companies – such as Autodesk, Adobe, Disney and Skype – rely on Qt to create innovative, advanced solutions.

Qt is Trolltech’s main product and provides a development platform for creating applications that run on all major operating systems (Windows, Linux and Mac). Qt is designed to help organizations streamline their application development, enable software differentiation, and increase productivity.

Dimension Films is reinventing Clive Barker’s Hellraiser movie, setting Julien Maury and Alexandre Bustillo to write and direct the remake. Dimension was the studio behind the Halloween remake, directed by Rob Zombie. French filmmakers Maury and Bustillo previously wrote and directed Inside, a supernatural thriller picked up by the Weinstein Co. earlier this year. Hellraiser was released in 1987, based on a Barker novella The Hellbound Heart. Barker wrote and directed the movie, which was about an unfaithful wife who attempts to assist her dead lover in his escape from hell. Along the way we were introduced to a race of demons called Cenobites, who were summoned using an antique puzzle box. Among them was Pinhead, one of the more enduring horror characters of the past two decades.

Since its 2001 debut, the Walt Disney Co. theme park Disney’s California Adventure has floundered in the shadow of its legendary neighbor, Disneyland. To fix it, Disney is now planning a $1.1 billion overhaul — the most extensive makeover the company has ever given to a theme park.

Disney’s board recently approved the investment, which will be poured into California Adventure over roughly five years, according to people familiar with the plan. The sum is particularly significant, considering the theme park cost around $1 billion to build and Disney has already spent more than $100 million trying to improve it.

Oscar-winning director James Cameron has arrived in Wellington in time for the world’s first sneak peek at his new movie Avatar.

The Dominion Post understands Cameron is in Wellington to start shooting scenes for the $US200 million science fiction film.

A secret Wellington location was uncovered yesterday where 80 imitation-gun-toting, camo-wearing stuntpeople and actors had gathered for days of rehearsals.

The men and women had split into pairs to learn how to provide covering fire for their partner. The manoeuvres included plenty of macho shouting and wide-legged posturing.

This report will leave you scratching your head in disbelief. In an incredibly irrational move that is shocking even by Disney standards, Radio Disney has required Promenade Pictures to remove the words “chosen by God” from radio ads promoting the new film, The Ten Commandments.”

The controversy was caused by an email from a Disney employee to a media buyer about the proposed ads, stating: “Our BS&P said both scripts need to include the studio mention and omit the following line: CHOSEN BY GOD … Please let me know if you have any questions.” Ok, I have a question. Why would anyone think it necessary or even rational to censor the word “God” from an ad about a Biblical film? The Disney/ABC BS&P (Bureau of Standards and Practices) censors have taken a misguided step off the politically-correct cliff.

(Source: Well, DreamWorks and Paramount are finally moving forward with their inevitable Transformers sequel, and they’ve done it by putting an enormous down payment on a unique, blockbuster screenwriting crew. In a deal that could ultimately pay out more than $8 million, the studios have hired Ehren Kruger (The Ring, Scream 3) to write the film’s screenplay with original Transformers scribes Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci, whose four credited films have produced $1.4 billion in worldwide box office.

Although they don’t give Academy Awards for compression, data deduplication, file virtualization and clustered file systems, those storage technologies play a major role in helping DreamWorks Animation LLC produce animated movies, such as Shrek and the upcoming Bee Movie.

Comparing his shop to a high-performance computing environment, DreamWorks senior technologist Skottie Miller said at a Storage Networking World session that those technologies help maintain storage tiers and keep down costs, while making sure all users have the resources they need.

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