Unity Technologies collaborates with Disney

A man with a VR headset is creating animation on a screen

writer icon Kay Lagercrantz     Unity Technologies   |   Game Development     🕐 13. Aug. 2018

Unity Technologies, the game development platform, has announced a collaboration with Disney.

With beginnings in Denmark, Unity has quickly grown to international fame as a gaming engine. Their software development environment is designed to help game creators make their games with ease, across a variety of platforms.

Game-changing tech

Seen by many as a method of bringing game development to the masses, Unity Technologies has turned the world of game creation on its head. As a result of their technology, people no longer need to be able to write code in order to build video games. This opened up a previously elite industry to a wider variety of people, and an enormity of possibilities.

This is not the first time Unity Technologies has partnered with a giant such as Disney. In March 2013, they announced on their blog that they were partnering with Facebook, meaning that game developers could “integrate Facebook’s awesome social experience into [their] game easier.” 

Unity Technologies are giants themselves, with more than 50% of the games developed for mobile devices being powered by Unity software, according to a claim on the official website. They have secured major investments in the past, including $400 million from the private equity firm Silver Lake in May 2017.

Big Hero 6

The collaboration between Unity Technologies and Disney centres on one of Disney’s popular characters, the inflatable robot Baymax, from the animated film Big Hero 6.

Disney is creating three animated shorts with the title Baymax Dreams. The shorts will be around 2-3 minutes long, and each short will follow Baymax as he falls asleep and finds himself in a dream world. They are being created using the real-time 3D platform created by Unity Technologies.

A quicker process
This different approach to animation uses real-time rendering technology. More commonly seen in game development, this would appear to make the creation process much quicker.

In a behind-the-scenes video shared by Unity Technology, Michael Breymann, Tech Supervisor for Baymax Dreams says how working with Unity “allows for multiple parallel workflows to happen simultaneously”.

This is a change from the traditional norm when making animated films. Usually, things are more linear, with each department doing their own work independently of one another, as well as being constrained by other departments progress.

“The director can look at everything the same time, instead of waiting for each department to hand off to the next one”
, Andy Wood, line producer for Baymax Dreams, states in the video. 

Following six months of collaboration between Disney and Unity Technology, Baymax Dreams will be released on the 15th September through the DisneyNOW app, as well as on the Disney Channel Youtube channel.

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