A strategic partnership announced on Friday between Universal Filmed Entertainment Group and Microsoft Corp. to “cloud-optimise live-action and animation productions” will see DreamWorks Animation extend into live-action production.
The companies said that the partnership aims to “empower the creative community with cloud-based production workflows that enable frictionless remote collaboration and content creation. Working together, the teams will extend DreamWorks Animation’s cutting-edge production platform to include live-action production. They will bring those workflows into Microsoft Azure and ensure Universal’s ecosystem of partners can connect to them in open, standards-based ways.
The companies also said the partnership would engage industry partners to streamline workflows and remote collaboration to enable a return to industry production during the global pandemic.
“With this partnership, Universal is continuing to build on our commitment as an industry leader in transitioning to a cloud production model across our portfolio of studios. As outlined last year in the MovieLabs 2030 vision paper, streamlining our workflows will allow for a more efficient creative process, empowering the artists and storytellers we work with to make the best content possible,” said Michael Wise, senior vice president and chief technology officer, at Universal Filmed Entertainment Group.
Great to see @Microsoft secure another media company moving their Film & TV production workflows to @Azure. Seeing real industry momentum to move demanding media production workflows to the #Azure cloud. #Media #Cloud #Microsoft #Avid https://t.co/A2qlg6pIjE
— Jeff Rosica (@JeffJRosica) August 21, 2020
Jeff Wike, chief technology officer at DreamWorks Animation added, “We are very excited to be collaborating with the Universal and Microsoft teams on this initiative. DreamWorks is focused on developing innovative technologies to achieve our studio’s creative ambitions, and we have been preparing for this opportunity by working with industry partners to optimise our internal solutions. Incorporating Microsoft’s Azure-based platform with our current infrastructure will enable us to provide increased and more flexible digital resources to our artists.”
DreamWorks and Universal technical teams are set to partner with Microsoft developers to take advantage of Azure’s global storage and compute platform to support both animation and live-action content creation. Universal said it plans to leverage this new capability on Azure to enable easy remote production collaboration, asset reuse, and ubiquitous compute and storage to empower creatives.
“Together with customers like Universal and DreamWorks, we are prioritizing cloud + edge technologies to help transform workflows, increase production output and reduce friction for creatives,” said Hanno Basse, media and entertainment CTO, Microsoft Azure. “Working together, we aspire to create technology for the industry, with the industry, so they can tell stories the world loves.”