MONTREAL – The highly anticipated animated Christmas tale, Klaus, is about to go into production right here in Montreal.
Special effects and animation studio, Cinesite, has opened a new facility.
The London-based company plans to create nine animated movies in the city over the next five years.
Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard and Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre were on hand Monday morning at the animation studio on St. Antoine Street in downtown Montreal.
“I feel like a kid in a candy store, because I’m not just the Mayor, I love movies,” said Coderre.
The company has worked on a variety of films, including Iron Man 3, the Harry Potter series and The Revenant, which was recently nominated for an Academy Award.
“Congratulations for your award and I think that the bear was not an animated one,” Coderre joked.
“We all saw the movie.”
Back in 2014, when the former government announced Cinesite would be opening operations in Montreal, they said 200 jobs would be created.
But Monday morning, Cinesite’s CEO said the number will be closer to 500 jobs.
“It bridges the technology industry with the creative arts industry,” said CEO Antony Hunt.
“We are predominantly using software. We have programmers, computer programmers, we have artists, who are very good at drawing literally images.”
Hunt stressed that the new facility will not only include creative personnel, but also additional staff like accountants and managers.
The firm will receive a $2.4 million loan to help with production infrastructure from Investissement Quebec, who is also guaranteeing a loan of $19.6 million to help with the production of the company’s first three films.
“$90 million of investment, 500 new jobs exemplifies where we want to go in the 21st century,” said Couillard.
“In the direction of innovation and digital, digital economy, which is also digital culture.”