Dark Slope Announces Strategic Partnership with SideFX Software and Unveils Virtual Production Smart Stage in Toronto

Dark Slope, the Toronto-based virtual production and spatial gaming company, today announces a strategic partnership agreement with SideFX Software, makers of the popular Houdini VFX software.

Image of two logos - one from Dark Slope, one from SideFX Software
Jul 9, 2024

February 1st, 2024 (Toronto, ON) – Dark Slope, the Toronto-based virtual production and spatial gaming company, today announces a strategic partnership agreement with SideFX Software, makers of the popular Houdini VFX software. The partnership includes a material investment to be directed towards the launch of an advanced virtual production smart stage in Toronto, set to open in the Spring of this year.

The smart stage builds upon Dark Slope’s award-winning technology, production, and storytelling expertise, and is designed to bring new creative possibilities and production efficiencies to television, film, and commercial producers locally and internationally.

“Kim Davidson and the SideFX team share our passion for innovating at the edge - where spatial technologies meet creative excellence in content creation” said Raja Khanna, Co-Founder and Executive Chair at Dark Slope. “We look forward to harnessing this partnership with SideFX to bring the broader content industries new ways to create engaging, entertaining media using the latest virtual production and in-camera VFX techniques.”

Catering to a range of industry production needs, Dark Slope offers solutions that combine the studio’s proprietary tools and workflow innovations alongside its experienced creative development team. The integration of feature-film grade hardware with deep expertise in spatial technologies enhances production efficiency, reduces costs associated with traditional shoots, and provides unprecedented creative flexibility. The studio’s new 75’ LED volume features feature-film quality hardware and an AI-enabled pipeline.

“The vision for our smart stage is to redefine how quality entertainment can come to life," said Dan Fill, President of Dark Slope. "Our expertise at the forefront of spatial technologies and creative development, uniquely positions us to drive innovation in virtual production. Our new smart stage is not just an investment in technology; it's a conduit for us and other producers to bring a wide array of content, from scripted to reality to sports, to life more efficiently without sacrificing creative vision.”

Kim Davidson, President & CEO at SideFX Software commented, “We are thrilled to back Dark Slope's venture. Dark Slope has consistently demonstrated not only their expertise in storytelling but also their technological acumen in both linear content and immersive gaming. Their mastery of Unreal Engine and their ability to seamlessly integrate high-quality hardware and software, including SideFX’s Houdini, into their workflow positions the company for great success as the market embraces real-time technologies. This synergy of storytelling prowess and technical expertise is exactly why we believe this partnership is a strategic step to advance the future of virtual production.”

Dark Slope's growing portfolio features virtual production-based collaborations with industry leaders such as Marblemedia, Aircraft, Insight Productions and Nickelodeon. A testament to the studios’ ability and commitment to building innovative entertainment solutions. The company has earned recognition for its impact on the industry, earning accolades such as the Realscreen Trailblazer (2023) and has been featured in the North America Deloitte Technology Fast 500™ (2022) and Canadian Deloitte Technology Fast 50™ (2022). Dark Slope’s current Series A raise remains open as the company looks to accelerate its growth across all lines of business.

In advance of the opening of the smart stage, Dark Slope’s creative team is also available for consultations on productions to align on the benefits and savings of using the smart stage.

Learn more Here

About SideFX

Established in 1987, SideFX is a world leader in the development of 3D animation and visual effects software for use in film, commercials and video games. SideFX has been recognized for its Houdini software with five Scientific & Technical awards from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, plus an Engineering, Science & Technology Emmy Award. Houdini has been used by studios such as Weta, Disney, Pixar, DNEG, Framestore, EA, Blizzard, Ubisoft and more to create stunning digital work in blockbuster films and TV, including: Avatar: The Way of Water, Encanto, Frozen, Raya and the Last Dragon, Dune, Leave the World Behind, The Last of Us, Black Mirror, Moana, The Lord of the Rings, and more – and video games Ghost Recon, Battlefield, Gears of War, Mafia III, Dropzone, Killzone, Uncharted, and more.

About Dark Slope

Elevate your entertainment with the Dark Slope edge. Dark Slope’s accomplished team of trailblazers and advanced spatial and virtual production technologies combine to bring quality television and unforgettable immersive experiences to life for clients and partners including Marblemedia, Aircraft, Insight Productions, Nickelodeon International, Dave & Busters, Hasbro, Epic Games, NBC Peacock, Wildbrain, TVOntario, WarnerMedia and more. Dark Slope is recognized as a Realscreen Trailblazer for their impact on the scripted and unscripted industries (2023), and as a North America Deloitte Technology Fast 500™ (2022) and Canadian Deloitte Technology Fast 50™ (2022).

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