In the world of visual effects and design, Robert Stromberg is an industry leader. The veteran production designer has worked on a whole host of blockbuster films and has even won two Academy Awards for Art Direction on Avatar and Alice in Wonderland.
Now, Stromberg is making his transition into the director’s chair with Disney’s much-anticipated live-action Sleeping Beauty film Maleficent, starring Angelina Jolie as the titular sorceress. But that’s not the only project that Stromberg has in the works.
According to a new report from Variety, Stromberg has committed to direct a new film called Safari, which is being described as “a large-scale adventure pic in the vein of Jurassic Park and Avatar.” The film is being developed by Stromberg’s new company, Hydra.
Hydra (named for the mythical three-headed monster) is comprised of Stromberg, production designer Dylan Cole, and storyboard artist Mark Moretti. With this new enterprise, these three veterans hope to give filmmakers an alternative to studio development.
It works like this: Hydra has partnered with the pre-vis company Third Floor (pre-vis is an abbreviation for previsualization, which can span anything from traditional storyboards and concept art to detailed computer animation). According to Variety, by combining their individual talents with Third Floor’s pre-vis experience, Hydra will help filmmakers get their projects off the ground.
Quoting the article:
Hydra’s process enables simultaneous story and visual development, blending traditional screenwriting with high-end concept design, storyboarding and previsualization. While several like-minded companies in the videogame and book worlds are taking the transmedia approach, Hydra believes it’s the only company coming from a pre-vis background.
In addition to Safari, Hydra is developing an adaptation of Dylan Cole’s children’s book, The Otherworldly Adventures of Tyler Washburn. As these projects move forward in development, Hydra plans to pitch them to studio partners for additional financing and development.
Keep your eye on main page for more news on Robert Stromberg’s Safari. His directorial debut, Maleficent, is expected to hit theaters March 14th, 2014.