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DreamWorks focuses on animation in Bay Area office

December 14, 2010 5:37:02 PM PST
The Bay Area is truly one of the world's animation capitals -- Pixar, ILM and DreamWorks are all located in the Bay Area. DreamWorks, home of Shrek, has quietly toiled away in a Peninsula office complex.

Shrek has become part of American pop culture. Over the course of four films, the lovable green ogre has grossed almost $3 billion worldwide.

And all four of the films were created in the DreamWorks headquarters in Redwood City, away from corporate offices in Southern California.

"I think we have less of the distractions of Hollywood, it really is about the story and the work here, we don't have to worry about all of the hoopla, that gets taken care of in Glendale," producer Denise Cascino said.

DreamWorks Animation's growth in 14 years has been nothing short of mammoth. It started as PDI in a little brick building behind a Fry's store in Palo Alto. DreamWorks bought it and now it is in a building with 600 people working in it.

The scope of the place is not the only thing that has changed. So has the technology, it's become much more sophisticated.

"When I see Shrek 1 or 2 I notice some of the software and choices we made were limited by the technology; now when I see our movies, you're just more immersed in it," visual effects supervisor Mahesh Ramasubramanian said.

Things like the detail in Shrek's clothing; it's so much more realistic now.

"I think people forget it's an animated film," Cascino said.

A franchise like Shrek is a marketing money maker. Shrek 4D is a theme park ride and there is a Broadway musical.


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