SolidAnim, the French startup that works on Avatar 2, has raised €500 000.
If Sully and Neytiri, the main characters of Avatar, have fluid and extremely close to those of human gestures in the next installment, it will be thanks to the French! SolidAnim, the company co-founded by Isaac Partouche, Jean-François and Emmanuel Szlapka Linot in 2007, is specialized in 3D animation. More specifically, in the motion capture, for the purpose of special effects.
They announced in late November that they have won a contract with James Cameron’s production company, Lightstorm Entertainment, valid for the next 3 installments of Avatar.
In terms of development, the startup has just raised €500 000 from business angels and an historic shareholder, which will allow to “develop themselves internationally and particularly in the United States, Los Angeles, ” says Isaac Partouche. The technology called SolidTrack allows to see the special effects whilst shooting. A real plus when it comes to post-production, whether for TV or cinema. It has also convinced James Cameron and Disney for the new episode of Alice in Wonderland as well as Robert Zemeckis (Forrest Gump, Back to the Future) for his next film The Walk, and to achieve the adaptation of the famous video game Warcraft.
€1.5 million turnover in 2014
The 500 000 euros will be invested in the international business development. Previously based in Angoulême (South West of France) and Ivry-sur-Seine (near Paris), SolidAnim is now also present in the United States, where Isaac Partouche has settled. “My move to the United States will bring more projects to SolidAnim and will consolidate our relationship with Lightstorm for the forthcoming Avatar,” he says.
This is the second round of funds for SolidAnim. In 2010 they raised around €100,000 from buisness angels. The start-up generated a €900,000 turnover in 2013 and € 1.5 million in 2014.
There are many actors in the special effects industry, such as VFX and HB Drive Pictures, based in Canada, and the French Mikros group, the studio Mac Guff and Buf Compagnie. However they are not specialized in capturing movements in 3D visualization purposes.
Crédit photo: Lightstorm Entertainment