The acquisition will help add highly-specialised feature film rotoscoping, paint, and photo editing plug-ins to the Boris FX suite of post-production and visual effects applications.
VFX specialist Boris FX, has acquire SilhouetteFX (SFX) and Digital Film Tools (DFT). The two companies have a long history of developing tools used on Hollywood’s biggest blockbusters and deep industry experience collaborating closely with renowned global VFX studios including Weta Digital, Framestore, Technicolor, and Deluxe.
The merger marks the third Boris FX acquisition in recent years following Imagineer Systems (2014), and GenArts (2016), and builds upon powerful creative editing, visual effects, and motion graphics solutions currently available to the film and television post-production industry. Silhouette and Digital Film Tools join Boris FX flagship solutions Sapphire, Continuum, and Mocha Pro.
Silhouette’s non-destructive paint and advanced rotoscoping technology was recognised earlier this year by the Academy of Motion Pictures (Technical Achievement Award) for its continued and lasting contribution to the world of film. It first gained prominence after Weta Digital, the visual effects company founded by director Peter Jackson, used the rotoscoping tools on King Kong (2005). Now the full-fledged GPU-accelerated node-based compositing application features over one hundred VFX nodes and integrated Boris FX Mocha planar tracking. For the last fifteen years, top feature film artists have used Silhouette on record-breaking box office hits including Avatar (2009), The Hobbit (2012), Wonder Woman (2017), Avengers: End Game (2019), and Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw (2019).
Digital Film Tools (DFT) emerged as an off-shoot of a Los Angeles-based motion picture visual effects facility whose work included hundreds of feature films, commercials, and television shows. The team used their strong practical understanding of photography, film and video editing, and in particular visual effects, to design highly-specialised software.
The Digital Film Tools portfolio includes standalone applications as well as professional plug-in collections for photographers, filmmakers, editors, and colorists. The definitive digital toolbox contains hundreds of realistic filters for optical camera simulation, specialised lenses, film stocks and grain, lens flares, optical lab processes, color correction, keying, and compositing as well as natural light and photographic effects. DFT plug-ins support Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom, After Effects, and Premiere Pro; Apple Final Cut Pro X and Motion; Avid Media Composer; and OFX hosts including Foundry Nuke and Blackmagic DaVinci Resolve.
“This acquisition is a natural next step to our continued growth strategy and singular focus on delivering the most powerful VFX tools and plug-ins to the content creation market,” stated Boris Yamnitsky, CEO & Founder, Boris FX.
“Silhouette fits perfectly into our product line with superior paint and advanced roto tools that highly complement Mocha’s core strength in planar tracking and object removal. Rotoscoping, paint, digital makeup, and stereo conversion are some of the most time-consuming labour-intensive aspects of feature film post-production,” continued Yamnitsky.
“Sharing technology and tools across all our products will make Silhouette even stronger as the leader in these tasks. Furthermore, the DFT product has developed a loyal following in the professional photography market as an incredible set of Photoshop plug-ins. We are very excited to be working with such an accomplished team and look forward to collaborating on new product offerings for photography, film, and video.”
Silhouette founders, Marco Paolini, Paul Miller, and Peter Moyer, will continue in their current leadership roles and partner with the Mocha product development team to collaborate on delivering next-generation tools. “By joining forces with Boris FX, we are not only dramatically expanding our team’s capabilities, but we are also joining a group of like-minded film industry pros to provide the best solutions and support to our customers,” says Marco Paolini, Product Designer. “The Mocha planar tracking option we currently license is extremely popular with Silhouette paint and roto artists, and more recently through OFX, we’ve added support for Sapphire plug-ins. Working together under the Boris FX umbrella is our next logical step and we are excited to add new features and continue advancing Silhouette for our user base.”
Both Silhouette and Digital Film Tool plug-ins will continue to be developed and sold under the Boris FX brand. Silhouette will adopt the Boris FX commitment to agile development with annual releases, annual support, and subscription options.
A preview of the upcoming Silhouette 2020 release, slated to ship October 2019, will be available at IBC, 7. A65