Celebrating 25 years of PDI’s ‘Antz’

Looking back at the tech and artistry from the 1998 film with VFX supervisor Ken Bielenberg.

Today on the befores & afters podcast, we’re celebrating the 25th anniversary of PDI’s Antz, with the visual effects supervisor on that film, Ken Bielenberg.

In the podcast, Ken and I talk about how he got started at PDI, some of the early projects he worked on, including the amazing Treehouse of Horror episode of The Simpsons featuring a 3D Homer.

Ken Bielenberg on the befores & afters podcast.

Then we jump into the big sequences in Antz that Ken oversaw. These include the flood–one of the first big examples of significant water simulation in a feature film.

Plus we talk about the development of proprietary tools at PDI and later at DreamWorks Animation, where Ken would go on to also be a visual effects supervisor on Shrek, Puss in Boots and Boss Baby among other films.

This episode of the befores & afters podcast is sponsored by Kitsu from CGWire. Together, we are all winners. This is the mantra of Kitsu a collaboration platform for VFX productions. With Kitsu, communication happens as if all the teams are in the same room. Producers can dispatch tasks, do reports, and collect deliveries at a glimpse. Artists know what they have to do and can publish their work easily, while the director can watch all the preview versions and send feedback directly to the team. As a result, you ship better pictures and your studio can handle more projects seamlessly. With Kitsu, you will unleash your full potential!

Check out the podcast below, plus some final and behind the scenes imagery, and a behind the scenes videos of the flood at PDI (care of Webster Colcord).

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