French publisher aims to unite SFX production for both movies and games

Ubisoft embarking on Hollywood integration

Ubisoft is planning to establish a special effects business that will work closely with the film industry.

Company CEO Yves Guillemot said that his new plan will help further strengthen ties between the film and games.

Guillemot was quick to clarify that Ubisoft will not suddenly become a film production studio, but did imply that his company’s technologies could be used to service special effects in movies.

“We want to create the capacity to develop special effects for movies” he said, speaking to The Financial Times. “Those worlds have to merge more and more.”

Ubisoft’s announcement may mark a positive forward step in the integration of the two sectors. Typically when a franchise is spread across film and games, the biggest area of synergy is in marketing. Ubisoft’s plan may unite both production processes in a more meaningful way.

"We can enrich movies and they can enrich games,” Guillemot said.

Ubisoft had recently purchased Canadian special effects firm Hybride, a company which has previously worked on movies such as Sin City and 300. Ubisoft want to use Hybride to deliver games which better resemble their film counterparts, as well as provide a means to work more closely with film production studios.

Currently the French publisher is collaborating with Twentieth Century Fox on its upcoming sci-fi flick Avatar. Ubisoft is reportedly sharing the development of the setting and characters.

“It is the first time we have been that close to a film studio,” said Guillemot. “We have access to all their data and they have access to ours."

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