Prime Focus is launching a new division, Prime Focus Film, which will be a London-based film VFX and stereoscopy facility.

Martin Hobbs, former board director and Head of Film production at MPC, is the Managing Director of the new division, which encompasses both Film VFX and View-D, which is Prime Focus’ proprietary 2D to stereo 3D conversion service.

“This is a bold statement of intent – a new business model, launched with drive, energy, enthusiasm and experience at a pivotal time for the VFX industry” said Hobbs. “I’m thrilled that so many big industry names share our vision – to have this level of senior creative and production talent involved in a new business is unprecedented.”

The division has already recruited a number of top talents: including VFX supervisor Jon Thum (The Matrix), animation director Michael Eames (Where The Wild Things Are), animation supervisor Pablo Grillo (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire), VFX supervisor Stuart Lashley (Watchmen), CG supervisor Alex Pejic (Inception), VFX producer Fiona Foster (Robin Hood) and head of pipeline Alexis Casas (Avatar).

The company has also set up a new digital art department, led by VFX art director Neil Miller (Children of Men) and including matte painter/concept artist Ludo Iochem (Stardust).

The outfit will be moving into a new London headquarters in 2011, being designed as “a flagship studio.”

Prime Focus Film also houses the View-D team, led by Matt Bristowe with Marcus Alexander, Richard Baker and Ben Murray.

Film VFX consultant Michael Elson, who also previously worked for MPC, has been advising Prime Focus on the new division. “The film industry is going through huge change, and the business models we built our old businesses on have to fundamentally change too. Alongside this, there is a groundswell of common thought amongst artists – a shared belief that there is a better way in which they can do their jobs. This is what I believe Prime Focus Film is all about – a new business model which gives filmmakers access to both the best local talent and the scale and infrastructure of a global group, whilst allowing artists to engage more closely with filmmakers, at an earlier stage in the process.”

Prime Focus’ current projects include work on the new 3D Dredd, for conceptual, planning, production design and pre-visualisation work in addition to stereo VFX services and converting key shots (which could not be captured on set) using View-D.

Namit Malhotra, global CEO and founder, Prime Focus added: “With our LA, Vancouver and Mumbai studios already delivering world-class VFX on projects such as Avatar, The Twilight Saga, The A-Team and GI Joe, this is the next piece in the jigsaw in creating a truly global VFX offering. We have a clear vision for the future of this industry, and a drive and determination to deliver the best talent, service, technology and scale to filmmakers, wherever they are in the world.”

Prime Focus has facilities in the US, Canada, the UK and India, employing more than 2,250 people.