CAMBRIDGE, UK — Vine FX (http://vinefx.com) has expanded to a new 2,000-square-foot visual effects studio, as well as doubled their talent pool to 30. The 12-year-old VFX house works on TV and film projects outside of the UK’s traditional home to high-end post in Soho.
VFX supervisor Michael Illingworth founded the company and relocated from Soho to his home town of Cambridge in 2016, thanks to technological advances such as faster broadband and improved remote viewing tools.
“Clients are now very comfortable with the idea of a facility not being Soho-based,” he notes. “Instead of endless screenings, where the client has to be present, they can now give feedback remotely. It’s far more efficient way of working.”
There also the cost benefit, he adds, noting that rents in Cambridge far lower than those in London.
The expansion follows a busy year for the studio, which worked on BBC1’s Troy: Fall Of A City, (BAFTA winner for best VFX) and Sky Atlantic’s Patrick Melrose, (BAFTA winner for best mini series), as well as ITV’s The Widow and Cold War drama, Summer Of Rockets for Little Island Productions.
Most recently, the Vine FX team provided VFX for the soon-to-be-released fifth series of Black Mirror for Netflix. The team was also sole vendor on ITV’s upcoming Beecham House, and are currently working on Fox Networks and Canal Plus’ adaptation of War Of The Worlds.
A seasoned VFX supervisor, Illingworth previously worked at Mill Film and Cinesite, has contributed to Gladiator, the Harry Potter films, Black Hawk Down, Atlantis, and Fantastic Beasts.
Head of 3D, Pedrom Dadgostar joined Vine following a three years at MPC Advertising as CG supervisor. Dadgostar was already living in Cambridge while at MPC, so joining Vine FX was “nothing short of a delight. I was never a fan of the intense business and bustle around Soho, so to be able to get to the studio here within 20 stress-free minutes and be able to work in such a nice environment makes it a tough place to beat!”
Head of Production, Laura Usaite adds: “Many VFX professionals can no longer afford to live in London, so [they] are renting or buying outside the capital. Vine FX either recruits talent from the local area or takes on staff who live north of London and can easily commute to Cambridge.”
Vine FX worked closely with Escape Technology to outfit the new facility, investing £150,000 in technology, including fast fibre connectivity, half a petabyte of storage, and creative tools like Nuke, Maya, Arnold and Flame.