LOS ANGELES — Full-service production studio Filmograph (http://filmograph.tv) recently used Google’s Zync renderer and cloud platform to complete the end title sequence for Saban’s feature film, Power Rangers. The studio’s vision was to bring to life a computer graphics environment of earthly yet alien-like minerals, macro shots of gritty rock formations, and names frozen inside the luminous glowing stones — all examples of the Power Rangers’ energy.
“Internally, we were thinking, ‘How are we going to render an all-CG project of this scope and complexity within four weeks to meet the film’s worldwide release date?’” says Seth Kleinberg, principal/executive producer at Filmograph.
“As a boutique firm, we compete against larger studios in terms of creativity,” adds Aaron Becker, principal/director at Filmograph. “But that’s only part of what we need. We have to be able to scale our computing environment to support any size jobs at any time. Zync Render on Google Cloud Platform is a perfect fit for us. Google’s cloud infrastructure levels the playing field and lets us offer clients the agility and creativity we’re known for, along with the technology resources typically found at much bigger studios.”
With 27 shots and only four weeks to complete, the Power Rangers main-on-end title CG sequence would present a challenge. To meet the client’s aggressive timeline, Filmograph had two choices: build its own rendering farm—which really wasn’t much of an option given the high costs and long deployment, or use a cloud solution. In the end, going with a cloud rendering environment was the best option.
Based on the recommendation of one of its artists, Filmograph chose Zync Render on Google Cloud Platform. Featuring native plug-ins and built-in licensing for Filmograph’s preferred animation and rendering tools, Zync allowed the firm to get started quickly and complete the rendering process for the Power Rangers sequence in less than three weeks, leaving time for finishing touches and additional fine detail.
“Using Zync Render on Google Cloud Platform, we could immediately jump into high gear to complete the Power Rangers project on schedule,” says Kleinberg. “Rendering was faster than we imagined and we tapped into more processing power than we could have ever afforded on our own. With such a compelling solution available, I wonder why any studio would choose to do in-house rendering.”
The advantages Filmograph saw from Google went beyond the Zync Render to also include Google G Suite apps, including Gmail and Google Drive, to communicate with the client and securely share large media files for review and approval.
“Our clients are more comfortable with us sharing creative assets over Google Drive versus using other popular file-sharing services,” Kleinberg explains. “They know Google takes security very seriously.”
“The sky is the limit with Zync Render on Google Cloud Platform,” adds Becker. “Our creativity won’t be hampered, and we’re opening up new revenue streams. It’s a great confidence boost to know that with 1,200 square feet of office space, a handful of desks and computers, and our network of skilled freelance artists, we can accomplish anything.”