VFX company Digital Domain of Spider Man - Homecoming and Transformers enters India with $3-5 mn investment
The company hopes to earn around 3-5% of its global revenue from India in 2018
Digital Domain, a leading American visual effects company, has launched its first studio in India. The Hyderabad base is the company’s fifth studio globally.
The studio has been built with an investment of around $3-5 million and can accommodate around 500 creative artists. For now though only 205 of those seats have been filled in. The Hyderabad office when fully staffed will be the second largest Digital Domain studio globally, after the Vancouver facility which has a strength of 500.
The overwhelming demand for short form content both on television and on over the top platforms, Prime Video from Amazon, Netflix, Hotstar, etc has drawn Digital Domain to India, said Sudhir Reddy, Head of Digital Studio, India. In addition, the proliferation and widespread acceptance of visual treats like Bahubali have also drawn the firm to India. The company hopes to earn around 3-5% of its global revenue from India in 2018, said Amit Chopra, CEO, North America, Digital Domain. He added that in the next five years he hopes that the India studio will rake in around $15 million for the company.
The Hyderabad studio, which has been functioning for around three months now, is on the verge of completing four projects. While none of the current projects are Indian, the team is focussed on working on Indian feature film projects and short form content for the local market, said Reddy.
One of the biggest criticisms of foreign VFX companies opening shop in India is that they only do the backend monotonous work for a given project hiring cheap talent and working out of cramped offices. “We have designed our Hyderabad office like our Los Angeles office. This is not a sweatshop,” added Reddy. The office has 100 sqft per person space and its open environment will make people want to work here, he further added. Reddy and Chopra both said they are keen on building a studio that can retain employees by giving them a good environment to work in coupled with exciting opportunities.
In addition to visual effects, the company also has capabilities in augmented reality, virtual reality and 360 degree platform. By mid-2018 the India studio will start building on AR, VR and 360 degree, said Reddy.
Digital Domain has been the VFX company that has contributed to Hollywood blockbusters such as Spider Man - Homecoming, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Deadpool, Transformers, and Beauty and the Beast.
In addition to Hyderabad, Digital Domain has global presence in Los Angeles, New York, Portland, Vancouver, London, Shanghai, Beijing, Taipei and Hong Kong.
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