Feb 27, 2014

"Life After Pi" - An Intimate Look Into The Troubled VFX Industry

Life After Pi is a documentary born out of a deep sense of frustration over a completely broken system in Hollywood, one that's adversely affected over 21 US VFX Studios in the last ten years or so. In an article that we wrote last year, we noted how foreign subsidies were driving VFX studios to bankruptcy by stretching them extremely thin and forcing them to bid lower and lower for movie projects: Ryhtm and Hues was just one of the companies to fall victims to this trend at a most inopportune time back in 2013, going into bankruptcy while winning Oscars for Life of Pi simultaneously. At the time it seemed baffling that such a thing could happen, but troubling rumors started to pop up while last years Oscars were ongoing.

The event that caused a large stir in the VFX industry came about when director Ang Lee and the Cinematographer completely failed to acknowledge the hundreds of (Now jobless) people that poured their life into making their CG heavy movie a success. This unified artists from many different fields to share their disdain for the current state of the movie industry, which has paid no regard to fostering the home grown studios that made dozens of their movies into visually stunning box office hits. Life After Pi goes into what happened at the studio during and after this period, and the type of broken system in Hollywood that has been driving many studios into bankruptcy.

Considering that we've seen little to no acknowledgement of this problem from studios, we'd encourage you as a reader to share this documentary wherever you can to educate people on this issue. Especially with the Oscars around the corner, it wouldn't hurt to see actors or directors acknowledge the hundreds of people working long, unpaid hours in the VFX trenches out of love for their craft. The same could be said about many other creative industries, where figureheads get all the credit for the work of hundreds. There needs to be a change.

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