Lucasfilm’s Industrial Light & Magic (ILM) held the opening of its newest permanent facility in the historic Gastown neighborhood of Vancouver yesterday. The studio is located in ‘The Packing House’, a 1910 heritage building at 21 Water Street, the site of Gastown’s first butcher shop.

Initially conceived as a satellite office upon its 2011 opening, ILM’s 30,000-square foot Vancouver studio is now a permanent fixture in ILM’s global operation.

Lynwen Brennan, Kathleen Kennedy, John Knoll, MLA Naomi Yamamoto, MP Ed Fast
[L to R: Lynwen Brennan, Kathleen Kennedy, John Knoll, MLA Naomi Yamamoto, MP Ed Fast]

The Honourable Edward Fast, Minister of International Trade and the Honourable Naomi Yamamoto, Minister of State for Small Business were in attendance at yesterday’s opening ceremony, as well as Lucasfilm president, Kathleen Kennedy, ILM president and general manager, Lynwen Brennan, and ILM chief creative officer, John Knoll.

ILM Vancouver lounge
[ILM Vancouver: lounge]

“Our experience in Vancouver has been wonderful,” noted Brennan, “with the remarkable talent the studio has attracted and the incredible imagery they have been able to create, we saw a tremendous benefit to giving this studio a permanent place in our global operations.”

“Lucasfilm’s Industrial Light & Magic opening a permanent office in Vancouver is great news,” said Premier Christy Clark. “With a talented workforce, a government committed to creating a climate where business can thrive, global players like ILM are increasingly drawn to one of the world’s most beautiful cities.”

ILM Vancouver Stanley Theater
[ILM Vancouver: Stanley Theater]

Over the next couple of months, ILM anticipates its new Vancouver studio to grow from 133 employees to roughly 200 by summer.

“Vancouver’s focus on creating a world-class digital media hub has put us among the top three cities globally with over 24,000 jobs in our region,” said Mayor Gregor Robertson. “Industrial Light & Magic’s new permanent Vancouver studio is great news for our robust innovation economy, and another clear example of the remarkable talent and investment being attracted to our city.”

“Vancouver is a hot bed for the creative arts. From this talent base we have assembled a very strong team of artists and production personnel who collaborate with our teams in San Francisco and Singapore at the highest levels,” added Knoll.

ILM Vancouver review room
[ILM Vancouver: review room]

Randal Shore, supervising producer for ILM Vancouver, manages day-to-day operations of the studio overseeing work on Transformers: Age of Extinction, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and a variety of other high-profile films. The work of ILM Vancouver was featured in The Lone Ranger, nominated for an Academy Award for Outstanding Achievement in Visual Effects and Pacific Rim, nominated for a BAFTA Award for Special Visual Effects.

ILM Vancouver will also contribute to several highly anticipated films including the upcoming Star Wars movies, Warcraft, Jurassic World and Tomorrowland. Working alongside ILM’s San Francisco office, the studio recently delivered a body of work for Captain America: The Winter Soldier for Marvel Studios.

All photos courtesy of Industrial Light & Magic.

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