DreamWorks Studio To Test New HP Workstations

The idea is to test the xw9400 workstations to see how much more quickly the studio can create advanced special effects. It will help HP iron out the kinks before the machines are introduced next month.
DreamWorks on Thursday reported a second-quarter profit on a better-than-expected performance by "Madagascar" on DVD and pay TV, as well as benefits from a distribution agreement with Paramount Pictures, according to a report from Merrill Lynch & Co. Net income was $13.7 million, or 13 cents per share, compared with a net loss of 4 cents per share in last year's second quarter. Revenue more than doubled to $74.9 million.

Fourth-quarter DVD sales of "Over the Hedge" should drive revenue for the remainder of 2006, the company said. DreamWorks's next film, "Flushed Away," opens in the US on November 3.

Some of the special effects moviegoers will see in "Flushed Away" center on water scenes. Chan says it's also the first computer-generated movie DreamWorks will produce with a "claymation" look.

Since the majority of the movie "Flushed Away" takes place with water, DreamWorks' software developers wrote code to help artists maintain creativity, yet realistically simulate the surface to interact with characters as they move. Chan said. "Artistic need to maintain control for where splashes occur and how big they are, but it also must flow with the overall picture."

DreamWorks demonstrated the water effect and others during sketch presentations at the SIGGRAPH 2006 conference this week. The studio showcased the technology behind "Flushed Away" and "Over the Hedge" in a series that focused on technology breakthroughs ranging from computer-generated tree lighting to adapting the stop-motion style in 3D animation.

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