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Tippett Studio is an American visual effects company specializing in computer-generated imagery (CGI) for films and television commercials. The studio has created visual effects and animations on over fifty feature films and commercials, garnering an Academy Award, four Clio Awards and two Emmy Awards. The company currently consists of approximately , with offices located in Berkeley, California.
Tippett Studio was founded in 1984 by Phil Tippett and Jules Roman, Phil's wife and the president of the company. The studio began as a stop motion animation company (by means of its particular stop motion animation variant, the so-called go motion animation technique). It also designed and built live action props for films, such as RoboCop, RoboCop 2, Honey, I Shrunk the Kids and Ghost. In 1991, the studio shifted its focus to computer-generated imagery to work on Jurassic Park, (released in 1993, with Industrial Light and Magic) by developing the Digital Input Device (DID). The DID was a new effects technology which placed computer-linked sensors into the moving joints of three-dimensional, articulated character models. This system earned Craig Hayes a Scientific and Technical Achievement Academy Award and the work on Jurassic Park earned the studio an Oscar. Creature animation work for Coneheads (also released in 1993) was the last go motion puppet project done by this company.
The studio also worked on Blockbuster commercials featuring Ray and Carl, a guinea pig and rabbit at a pet store window from 2002 to 2007 during the Super Bowl.
Paul Verhoeven's 1997 film Starship Troopers became at the time Tippett Studio's biggest project, with over 500 effects shots, for which the company received another Academy Award nomination. Phil Tippett co-directed the large-scale battle sequences with Verhoeven. The studio doubled in size to digitally animate and composite hundreds of creature shots for the film.
Early in 2000, the studio re-teamed with Paul Verhoeven on Hollow Man. Craig Hayes co-supervised the creation of the invisible Sebastian whose outline becomes visible in steam, rain, water and even blood. The outstanding visual effects were recognized with another Academy Award nomination.