|sent from: Esher, Surrey, UK. destination: London, UK|
It was reported yesterday that ILM is opening an office in London. This has been common knowledge in London bars for about 6 months, although the exact details have been the subject of rumour and conjecture.
What I find interesting is the automatic assumption that ILM London = Star Wars. It might be, but the dominant factor here is economics. Gone are the days when ILM was the only place that could do the scale of work required. They’ve built relationships with vendors such as Pixomondo, Base FX in China, and other small places around the world.
One of the challenges during the prequels was the need to keep non-Star Wars (ie. profit making) work at the studio, when the perception for clients was that the studio was at capacity (and its talent occupied) with Star Wars alone. In-house jobs are good to keep the lights on but can’t be charged in the same way as work for external clients.
Would it not, then, make sense for ILM to farm out as much of the SW work as possible, while keeping the more profitable work at ILM and its satellite pods around the world?