Post Production

Pixar Releases RenderMan for KATANA

Collaboration between Pixar and The Foundry delivers powerful new integration

Pixar Animation Studios today announced the release of RenderMan for KATANA, providing a fully integrated bridge between Pixar’s Academy Award®-winning RenderMan feature film quality renderer, and The Foundry’s acclaimed KATANA asset based look development and lighting toolset. Developed with The Foundry as part of a collaboration announced at SIGGRAPH 2013, Pixar is making RenderMan for KATANA (RfK) freely available to all KATANA users. Key benefits include support for the advanced features in RenderMan Pro Server 18 including path tracing, geometric area lights, enhancements for interactive re-rendering, and a sophisticated shader suite that can be used with both KATANA and RenderMan Studio. In addition, Pixar’s image tool 'it', is included as an alternate viewer from within KATANA.
Andy Lomas, KATANA Product Manager at The Foundry comments. “The ongoing technical collaboration with the RenderMan team, is already offering KATANA users a range of benefits. We are excited that artists will now have access to the built-in RenderMan shaders out-of-the-box. This is only the beginning of what we can achieve together.”
“We are very happy we switched to a RenderMan/KATANA pipeline.  The workflow in KATANA is great and the plausible shading in RenderMan is fantastic.  The other reason we favor RenderMan is its flexibility.  We have confidence that for any given problem we throw at it, there will be a solution.” Said Colin Davis, VFX Supervisor/Partner at Spin VFX.
“RenderMan for KATANA leverages the breadth and depth of knowledge within the RenderMan team, alongside the experts at The Foundry, to provide a complete and optimized integration into KATANA.  It's reassuring to know that we'll have access to new RenderMan features as soon as they're available within the core renderer and that Pixar is standing behind KATANA as a first class platform for their flagship product.” Said Hilmar Koch, Head of CG – Industrial Light & Magic.
“It has been great to see Pixar take ownership of KATANA integration through the RfK plugin. We have seen huge improvements in performance, stability, and features. KATANA now feels like a fluid extension of RenderMan Pro Server.  We are happy to be able to focus our efforts on the rendered images rather than plugin development.” Said Micah Henrie, Production Technology, Laika.
RenderMan for KATANA is designed to provide every user of The Foundry’s KATANA with fast and easy access to Pixar’s Academy Award®-winning rendering technology used for the stunning visual effects seen in the majority of today’s feature films.

RenderMan for KATANA is available as a free plugin for KATANA users on Linux, and is compatible with RenderMan Pro Server 18 and KATANA versions 1.5 and 1.6. A program of continuing dot release upgrades and support for new versions of RenderMan Pro Server is also available. For more information please visit or contact


About Pixar Animation Studios
Pixar Animation Studios, a wholly owned subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company, is an Academy Award®-winning film studio with world-renowned technical, creative and production capabilities in the art of computer animation.  Creator of some of the most successful and beloved animated films of all time, including “Toy Story,” “Monsters, Inc.,” “Cars,” “The Incredibles,” “Ratatouille,” “WALL•E,” “Up,” “Toy Story 3” and “Brave,” the Northern California studio has won 30 Academy Awards® and its films have grossed more than $8.3 billion at the worldwide box office to date. “Monsters University,” Pixar’s fourteenth feature, is now available on all home entertainment platforms.

About The Foundry
The Foundry develops award-winning computer graphics and visual effects (VFX) software used globally by leading artists, designers and creative professionals. The portfolio lets users create inspiring and technical high-end visuals across a wide range of industries including product and concept design, marketing & advertising, media & entertainment and game development.

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