LOS ANGELES, CA - Feb. 5, 2009 - Image Metrics, the leading provider of facial animation services for the entertainment industry, has introduced four new facial animation service levels for film and game customers. Due to throughput innovations in Image Metrics' proprietary technology as well as significant improvements to its in-house facial animation processes, the new service levels now offer even better results at more competitive prices.
"In the past, CG storytellers have been unable to get the performances they wanted from their CG characters because animating the face has been cost-prohibitive. In games alone, prices for adequate facial animation average roughly $5,000 per minute," said Michael Starkenburg, Image Metrics' CEO. "Our new offerings provide game developers and filmmakers far greater value by enabling them to achieve the exact facial performance required to tell their stories without sacrificing large portions on their budget to do so."
The four new service levels range from facial animation for background video game characters to photorealistic digital doubles for live-action movies. All offerings use Image Metrics' proprietary facial animation technology to analyze an actor's facial performance and transfer it with all of its subtleties and nuances to a 3D facial rig.
The service levels are broken down as follows:
• Value: At roughly half the cost of standard facial animation, this completely new service level uses Image Metrics' proprietary technology to automatically generate high volumes of high-quality facial animation for secondary characters in games or for pre-visualization purposes.
• Pro: Ideal for important in-game scenes and cutscenes, this service level offers more subtle facial movements on advanced games rigs as well as iterative cycles to help clients capture better performances.
• Premium: This level provides greater creative control with pore-level analysis of facial movement and more fine-tuning of the performance. Including optional support for multi-camera performance capture, it is ideal for more budget-conscious film studios or VFX houses that need high quality CG faces for films, visual effects shots or television spots.
• Elite: Image Metrics' highest level of service takes advantage of the very best its technology-based service has to offer. From HD (and up) support to optional multi-camera performance capture, superior analysis detail to multiple creative iterations, this level gives quality-focused directors the freedom to create completely believable digital faces for their most important scenes.
For easy integration into customer pipelines, all service levels include a final output of animation curves that work with the leading 3D software applications. Ongoing customer service is also included in all service levels.
About Image Metrics
Image Metrics provides superior facial animation services to the interactive entertainment and film industries. Developed by a team of computer vision Ph.D.s, Image Metrics rapidly re-creates facial performances without markers or makeup, achieving levels of realism and fidelity that are unparalleled in computer graphics. Image Metrics' solutions enjoy widespread adoption by some of the best-known production studios in the entertainment world, including Digital Domain, Rockstar Games and Sony Computer Entertainment. Image Metrics has offices in Santa Monica, California and Manchester, U.K.