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List of Animation and Visual Effects Studios

Upper-Tier Studios

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If you're considering a career in 3D, it's important to know where the jobs are and who's who in the animation and visual effects industry. We've compiled a list of the top tier animation studios and visual effects production houses. It's not meant to be comprehensive—there are dozens of smaller studios doing great work, but for now let's keep to the basics.

We've narrowed the selection down to twenty of the major players to help you get your bearings. For the time being this will just be a static list, but we plan on eventually doing a profile for every animation studio and production house on the page, so check back from time to time or subscribe to the newsletter for a weekly update.

  1. Walt Disney Animation Studios

    Location: Burbank, California, U.S.
    Highest Grossing Film: The Lion King
    Specialty: Feature Animation

  2. Pixar Animation Studios

    Location: Emeryville, California, U.S.
    Highest Grossing Film: Toy Story 3
    Specialty: Feature Animation

  3. DreamWorks Animation SKG

    Location: Glendale, California, U.S.
    Highest Grossing Film: Shrek 2
    Specialty: Feature Animation

  4. Blue Sky Studios (Fox)

    Location: Greenwich, Connecticut, U.S.
    Highest Grossing Film: Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs
    Specialty: Feature Animation

  5. Rhythm & Hues Studios

    Location: Los Angeles, California, U.S.
    Notable Achievement: Visual effects Oscar for Golden Compass (Shared with Framestore), insanely long list of major film credits.
    Specialty: Feature Animation, Visual Effects

  6. Animal Logic

    Location: Sydney, Australia
    Highest Grossing Film: Happy Feet
    Notable Achievement: Awarded Best Animated Feature Oscar for Happy Feet.
    Specialty: Visual Effects, Commercial Advertising, Feature Animation

  7. Industrial Light & Magic

    Location: Presidio of San Francisco, California, U.S.
    Notable Achievement: 15 Visual Effects (VFX) Oscars, too many nominations to count. Star Wars is the jewel in the crown, but they own the most impressive effects portfolio in the industry. Impossible to overstate their influence.
    Specialty: Visual Effects, recently Feature Animation (Rango)

  8. WETA Digital

    Location: Wellington, New Zealand
    Notable Achievement: Groundbreaking crowd simulation system, several VFX Academy Awards, including those for The Lord of the Rings Trilogy and Avatar.
    Specialty: Visual Effects, Performance Capture

  9. Sony Pictures Animation

    Location: Culver City, California, U.S.
    Highest Grossing Film: Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs
    Specialty: Feature Animation

  10. Sony Pictures Imageworks

    Location: Culver City, California, U.S.
    Notable Achievement: Oscar winning VFX in Spider-Man 2, several additional nominations including 2012 and Alice in Wonderland.
    Specialty: Visual Effects

  11. Framestore

    Location: London, United Kingdom
    Notable Achievement: Academy Award in Visual Effects for The Golden Compass, nominated for The Dark Knight
    Specialty: Visual Effects, Commercial Advertising

  12. Digital Domain

    Location: Venice, Los Angeles, California, U.S.
    Notable Achievement: Oscar winning photorealism in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, and another pair of Academy Awards for Titanic and What Dreams May Come.
    Specialty: Visual Effects, Commercial Advertising

  13. Blur Studios

    Location: Venice, Los Angeles, California, U.S.
    Notable Achievement: Academy Award nomination for 2004 short film Gopher Brokebr> Specialty: Visual Effects, Game Trailers/Cinematics

  14. Double Negative

    Location: Soho, London, United Kingdom
    Notable Achievement: Took home VFX Oscar for Inception. Their recent resume is impressive, to say the least.
    Specialty: Visual Effects

  15. Arc Productions

    Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    Highest Grossing Film: Gnomeo & Juliet
    Notable Achievement: Nominated for Visual Effects Society (VES) award in Outstanding Animation for 9.
    Specialty:Feature Animation

  16. Imagi Animation Studios (future in limbo)

    Location: Chai Wan, Hong Kong
    Highest Grossing Film: TNMT
    Specialty: Feature Animation

  17. Moving Picture Company

    Location: Soho, London, UK
    Notable Achievement: Oscar nomination for VFX in Poseidon, dozens of VES nominations for work in television and advertising.
    Specialty:Commercial Advertising, Visual Effects for television (and more recently film)

  18. Axis Animation

    Location: Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom
    The Low Down: A young studio on the rise&#recently worked on Zach Snyder's Sucker Punch
    Specialty: Visual Effects

  19. The Mill

    Location: London, United Kingdom
    Notable Achievement: VFX Oscar for Gladiator, numerous VES and BAFTA awards/nominations.
    Specialty: Commercial Advertising, Visual Effects, Post Production

  20. Zoic Studios

    Location: Culver City, California, U.S.
    Notable Achievement: Emmy Award winning effects for Firefly.
    Specialty: Visual Effects, both television and film.

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