Chicken Bone FX Hires a BREAK+ENTER VFX Team
BREAK+ENTER’s Closure Opens an Opportunity for Chicken Bone FX Studios
Chicken Bone FX Studios has seized an opportunity to hire a talented team of professionals from BREAK+ENTER, a visual effects company that was forced to shut its doors. BREAK+ENTER was headquartered in New York City, NY where Chicken Bone FX also has an office, in addition to its headquarters in Manhattan Beach, CA. The addition of one of BREAK+ENTER’s visual effects team increases Chicken Bone’s employee count by about a third and greatly enhances the company’s ability to take on more projects of interest.
Chicken Bone FX first heard of BREAK+ENTER’s closure from a mutual client who asked if Chicken Bone was able to take on the scope of work that was jeopardized by the sudden closure. John Renzulli, Chicken Bone FX Founder, and President, quickly determined that the company was ready and able to rapidly scale from both a technology and management perspective.
“It’s a sad day for the entire VFX community when we hear of vendors shuttering their doors. We are both humbled and excited to have the opportunity to provide stability for our community by employing one of the B+E teams. Adding this talented group of artisans and production professionals strengthens our ecosystem while also filling a void in the market. We are delighted to have them here and proud to give these chickens a new place to roost,” said Renzulli.
Director of VFX Production, Arissa Blasingame, agrees.
“The opportunity to acquire the B+E team felt like a natural evolution for Chicken Bone FX. The team is filled with many like-minded professionals who complement the values and mission Chicken Bone strives for within the industry. It is a very exciting time for everyone involved,” Blasingame commented.
One of the talented individuals Chicken Bone FX was able to hire includes Creative Director / VFX Supervisor, Ari Rubenstein. Mr. Rubenstein is a 30-year veteran with an impressive array of credits spanning features, television, and animation as a VFX supervisor, lead compositor, compositor, match-move artist, character animator, and technical director. Rubenstein served as a key artist responsible for look development and supervision at Blue Sky Studios for 15 years, where he worked on scores of animated features for Disney and 20th Century Fox. Over the course of his career, he has worn virtually every hat in the VFX production pipeline and worked at three industry pioneers, Xaos Inc., Tippett Studio, and Blue Sky Studios. Rubenstein was also the founder and VFX Supervisor/Producer of Curv Studios. Among his many notable credits are Matrix Revolutions, Constantine, Charlotte’s Web, and Hellboy.
Rubenstein was integral in making the BREAK+ENTER-to-Chicken Bone FX transition happen. He did not take a back seat but sat in the driver’s seat spending hours on phone calls with individuals on his team as well as on Chicken Bone’s team, and the client to ensure each person was considered on their own merit and with their own concerns in mind. Without Rubenstein, the transition may not have happened at all and likely would not have happened as smoothly as it did.
“There is certainly a shared vision and complementary skill sets which make blending these two teams into one much stronger crew, pretty straightforward. And while together we become a formidable VFX outfit with increased capacity even more exciting is our strategy for future growth. It’s the silver lining in this entire affair, when one door closes, boy did another open!” Rubenstein said.
Integrating the BREAK+ENTER team into the Chicken Bone team has been a large undertaking as a small company made easier by some similarities such as a remote workflow, similar pipelines, and strong culture of connection and collaboration.
Utilizing a virtual office model since its’ inception, Chicken Bone FX has been strategic in its approach to scalability both from a technical perspective, being one of the first to employ Virtual Desktop Interfaces utilizing fully remote production teams in visual effects 10 years ago, and from a cultural perspective with its intentionality around connection and teambuilding with fully remote teams. Chicken Bone FX is a “community first” organization with a commitment to treating people with respect and providing work/life balance to those working in the visual effects industry.
“It’s truly incredible how without forewarning, we were able to attract and hire almost an entire visual effects team consisting of VFX management, CG artists, Compositors, and a VFX Editor. This was a win for everyone involved– the people we hired who were unexpectedly losing their jobs, our client who could rely on a pre-existing trusted partner to help them avoid project delays and extra expense, and Chicken Bone FX which is now able to take on even more exciting work due to employing more talented artists in the industry, “ says Emma Everett, Director of Talent & Culture, at Chicken Bone FX.
For those of you who don’t know B+E was a tremendous studio that we had a ton of respect for. We are sad to see the studio come to an end when they had so many good things going for them– people, culture, tech, and of course visual effects.
- Colleen Bachman
- Jasper Kidd
- Gabriel Regentin
- Manda Cheung
- Sam Kim
- Dave Zeevalk
- Lucas Greenwood-Andrei
- Aline Lima
- James McEvitt
- Plus the multitude of producers and coordinators that supported every project.
With more “chicks in the coop” we’re all excited to see what we accomplish together…and we have some ideas. More to come later in the year!