Double Negative launches new animation division

The top VFX studio branches out into toons in the wake of new UK tax credits.

The associate producer on Rise of the Guardians is joining DNeg's new division

Double Negative (aka DNeg), one of the world’s leading visual effects houses, has announced the formation of a new Feature Animation Division led by ex-Dreamworks associate producer Tom Jacomb.

The new division’s intent will be to create a back end pipeline that can fully integrate with the frontend pipeline of IP creators and filmmakers in the creation of high end animated features.

The division will be looking to augment DNeg’s core team of animators and artists with additional artists specifically focused on animated features, to be based out of their London HQ.

UK tax credits are encouraging new investment in animation facilities

Jacomb, who joins Double Negative as managing director of Feature animation, has over 12 years' experience as an associate producer and line producer, most recently at Dreamworks where he was associate producer on Rise of the Guardians and the Oscar-nominated Puss in Boots.

The announcement follows the launch earlier today of Locksmith, the first dedicated high-end feature animation studio ever created in the UK, with backing from both Double Negative and Elisabeth Murdoch.

Locksmith is being headed up by Sarah Smith, former creative director at Aardman Animation and director and co-writer of 2011's Arthur Christmas, and follows the UK government's introduction of an animation tax credit last year.

New era

DNeg has until now been best known for its VFX work on movies like The World's End

"Animated feature films are an exciting next step in the development of Double Negative," said Matt Holben, CEO of Double Negative. "We recognise that whilst there are synergies with VFX it requires a different approach.

"We are thrilled that Tom Jacomb has joined us to develop our new division. We are excited by the long-term potential of feature animation and are determined to build a sustainable pipeline of work."

Tom Jacomb adds: "I am incredibly excited to be coming back to London, with all the incredible animation talent here, to build a top quality feature studio with Double Negative. Combining those talents with the vision, passion and artistry shown by Double Negative is an opportunity to create a sustainable first class studio."

Also read: How DNeg's Frazer Churchill created the VFX for The World's End and more.


Tom May is a freelance writer and editor specialising in design and technology. He was previously associate editor at Creative Bloq and deputy editor at net magazine, the world’s best-selling magazine for web designers. Over two decades in journalism he’s worked for a wide range of mainstream titles including The Sun, Radio Times, NME, Heat, Company and Bella. Follow him on Twitter @tom_may.