PALO ALTO, Calif. — HP announced it was selected by DreamWorks Animation SKG to deliver the technology behind The Croods, pushing the boundaries of modern imagery for this prehistoric animated adventure that is anything but primitive. DreamWorks Animation leveraged technical resources throughout HP to create the most advanced graphics to date for the family comedy, which debuted in theaters March 22, 2013. HP Converged Infrastructure, comprising servers, storage, networking, services, management software and workstations, as well as HP printers and digital rendering, provided the seamless, high-performance foundation needed to meet the studio’s artistic demands.
“Cutting-edge digital manufacturing requires a huge amount of compute power and orchestrated collaboration across our studios,” said Derek Chan, head, Technology Global Operations, DreamWorks Animation. “HP Converged Infrastructure ensures that our filmmakers have the technical resources they require to bring their creative vision to life and deliver amazing films to our audiences.”
HP services and servers meet massive compute demands
Production of The Croods required more than 80 million render hours to generate visual images from 3-D models. To bring to life characters such as Grug, the overprotective dad, and Eep, the teenage rebel daughter, DreamWorks Animation relied on HP ProLiant servers and HP Enterprise Services in render farms across four geographic locations — Glendale and Redwood City, CA; Las Vegas; and Bangalore, India. High-performance, continuous compute power delivered by HP solutions enabled DreamWorks Animation to render the large amount of data required to produce the film.
Additionally, HP ProLiant BL460c Gen8 server blades provided the studio with more than 40 percent higher throughput, and improved performance by more than 42 percent per watt compared to previous generations.(1) As a result, the studio increased render capabilities to an average of 500,000 jobs a day.
HP Workstations enable artistic collaboration
To create the exotic creatures and intricate landscapes that the Crood family encounters, DreamWorks Animation artists used HP’s ultimate workstations, the HP Z820 and Z800. Featuring dual Intel Xeon processors, the HP Z820 Workstation is up to 50 percent faster than its predecessor,(1) allowing artists to work on large, complex scenes across multiple shots, characters and films in an interactive environment.
HP Z800 Workstations also were used in the new DreamWorks Animation state-of-the-art recording studio to capture the imaginative inventions of Guy and the warm laughter of Gran.
Further enhancing the user experience, HP’s Remote Graphics Software allowed artists across studios in Glendale, Redwood City and Bangalore to collaborate in real time on a single desktop display.
Comprehensive technology experience
Building on a relationship that began in 2001, DreamWorks Animation relied on HP for nearly every facet of technology animation in the production of The Croods.
Key benefits include:
- Continuous network availability via the HP FlexNetwork architecture, which includes the HP 12518, 5820, 5800 and 6125G/XG Switch series with HP Intelligent Resilient Framework (IRF), a built-in innovative virtualization technology.
- Reduced network management complexity across the studio’s environment with HP Intelligent Management Center, a single pane-of-glass application, as well as simplified print management with HP’s Managed Print Services.
- Fast, reliable and protected access to the studio’s applications and assets with HP 3PAR StoreServ Storage, HP MSA P2000, HP StoreAll Storage and HP StoreOnce Backup.
- Central management of storage arrays with HP 3PAR StoreServ enables DreamWorks Animation engineers to easily manage and monitor storage operations from their desktop.
- Color consistency across print, display and big screen production of the movie’s creatures and vibrant environments during production with HP DreamColor professional displays and printers.
HP hardware, software and services supported The Croods from ideation to completion, allowing DreamWorks Animation to complete the production and deliver the cutting-edge graphics their fans expect.
(1) According to HP internal calculations.