Academy Software Foundation Releases Playback And Review Open Source Tools


With the goal of creating an uniform open source toolset for the playback, review, and approval of motion pictures and associated professional material, the Academy Software Foundation is establishing a new project that will be coordinated by Autodesk, DNEG, and Sony Pictures Imageworks. As the three companies make their RV, xSTUDIO, and portions of the itView ecosystem available to the open source community for the first time, the Open Review Initiative will be governed by an overarching Technical Steering Committee (TSC) made up of lead architects and maintainers from each company.

The Foundation stated that the umbrella TSC will direct the strategy for each initially independent code repository with the aim of progressively merging the three into a unified, cutting-edge review and approval structure.

“The review and approval landscape encompasses a deceptively large amount of interconnected systems – including playback, production tracking, asset management, editorial integration, transcoding, transport, and annotations,” said Erik Strauss, who served as chair of the Review and Approval Working Group and will continue to participate as the umbrella TSC chair for the Open Review Initiative.

A brand-new Digital Production Example Library has also been made accessible to developers, researchers, and educators by the Foundation. It was developed as a vendor-neutral platform for test content with a uniform licence agreement.

DPEL is hosting the following assets at launch:

  • Animal Logic’s ALab Phase 2: The first open-sourced USD scene and shot context from a studio, featuring a full production scene with over 300 production quality components, two animated characters, baked procedural fur and fabric, and more.
  • Intel’s Volumetric Clouds Library: A collection of 30 VDB cloud assets with resolutions ranging from fairly tiny ( 1 MB) to quite large (> 8 GB), including both thick and sparse clouds.
  • The Maya representation of the Noa character from Amazon Web Services (AWS), a fully animateable main character with a rig, geometry, textures, and hairstyle. The in-house production team FuzzyPixel of AWS produced the short film Spanner, which stars Noa as the protagonist.


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