Lured by British Columbia’s enticing 58% tax incentives, Sony Pictures Imageworks is relocating its headquarters from Los Angeles to Vancouver.
The company is moving into a new facility that is capable of accommodating up to 700 employees, leaving a question mark over the fate of the 250-plus employees at the current hub in Culver City.
Jason Dowdeswell will continue to lead Sony Pictures Imageworks’ operations in Vancouver as vp of production operations, while Mark Breakspear joins as visual effects supervisor and Shauna Bryan as vp of new business and production executive. Both arrive from similar roles at Method Studios in Vancouver.
The production office opened in Vancouver in 2010 with a staff of 80 artists and recently worked on Warner Bros’ imminent sci-fi release Edge Of Tomorrow starring Tom Cruise and Emily Blunt, as well as The Amazing Spider-Man 2, when staffing levels climbed to 350.
The team will take the lead on Sony Pictures Imageworks projects such as Disney’s Guardians Of The Galaxy, Sony’s Pixels, Hotel Transylvania 2 and untitled Smurfs movie, as well as Rovio’s Angry Birds film.
Sony Pictures Digital Productions evp and general manager of digital production services Randy Lake said Vancouver had become a “world-class” effects and animation hub that operated in a “robust business climate.”