VFX Houses in Memoriam

In progress...

Asylum Visual Effects | 1999~2010
Boss Films | 1983~1997
Buena Vista Visual Effects
CafeFX | 1993~2010
Centropolis Effects | 1997~2002
C.O.R.E. | 1994~2010
Disney Feature Animation
DreamQuest Images
ESC Entertainment | 1997~2004
FUEL VFX | 2000~2012 (Animal Logic Purchased Fuel VFX in Oct 2012)
Giant Killer Robots | 
Illusion Arts | 
Image Movers Digital | 
Kerner Optical | 1977~2011
Cinergi F/X ~> Mass Illusion ~> Manex Visual Effects | 1995-2001
Matte World Digital | 
Mecury FX Limited | 2013
Meteor Studios | ~2008
Mill Film Effects Division | 
Pacific Title & Art Studio | 1919 to 2009, Resurrected & Relaunched in 2012! Why?
Pixomondo UK & Detroit | 
The Orphange | 
The Secret Lab
Tweak Films | 
Warner Digital | 

Until I have time to flesh this list out, I have borrowed the list below from the VFX Crossroads series, all credit to Phil Feiner below:

Shuttered: a list of bankrupt or closed VFX Houses

This list has been kept and maintained over the years by Phil Feiner, who kindly made it available for publication. Thanks to Jonathan Erland for the suggestion to add the box office numbers for the films that these now-defunct VFX houses did. Global box office numbers are courtesy BoxOfficeMojo.com

Please note that more than one VFX house worked on most, if not all, of the movies listed below.

The list includes houses that did opticals & titles as well as a handful of post production facilities that also contributed visual effects. Most, but not all, of the facilities listed here were closed due to bankruptcy.


Rhythm & HuesLord of the Rings: Return of the King ($1.1B); Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone ($974M); Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring ($871M); The Hunger Games ($691M); Life of Pi ($601M thus far)


Digital Domain (Purchased by Galloping Horse (China) & Reliance Media (India) –Titanic ($2.1B); Marvel's The Avengers ($1.5B); Transformers: Dark of the Moon ($1.1B); Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen ($836M); Transformers ($708M)

ICO VFXCats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore ($112M)


CIS – HollywoodTitanic ($2.1B); Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest ($1B); Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End ($963M); The Twilight Saga: Eclipse ($698M); Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl ($654M)

Kerner OpticalTransformers: Dark of the Moon ($1.1B); Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen ($836M); Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull ($786M); Iron Man 2 ($623M).


Asylum VFX Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest ($1.1B); Alice in Wonderland ($1B); Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen ($836M); Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull ($786M); Transformers ($708M)

Café Fx (aka Computer Café) Alice in Wonderland ($1B); Spider-Man 3 ($890M); Iron Man ($585M); Armageddon ($553M); King Kong ($550M)

C.O.R.E. Digital Pictures X-Men ($296M); Doctor Dolittle ($294M); Flubber ($177M); Nutty Professor II: The Klumps ($166M); Saw II ($147M)


Illusion ArtsThe Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe ($745M); Ghost ($505M); Bruce Almighty ($484M); Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian ($413M); Batman Forever ($336M)

Pacific Title & Art StudioPirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest ($1B); Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End ($963M); The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe ($745M); Star Trek ($385M); Night at the Museum ($177M)
Note: Pac Title has been Resurrected & Relaunched! (Why?) 


Gray Matter Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl ($654M); XXX ($277M); American Gangster ($266M); Fun with Dick and Jane ($202M); The Italian Job ($176M)


The Orphanage Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest ($1B); Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End ($963M); Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire ($896M); Night at the Museum ($574M); Iron Man ($585M)


Digital FilmworksPlanet of the Apes ($362M); Minority Report ($358M); The Longest Yard ($190M); Cheaper by the Dozen ($190M); Big Momma's House ($173M)

ESC EntertainmentThe Matrix Reloaded ($742M); The Matrix Revolutions ($427M); Constantine ($231M); Catwoman ($82M); The Ladykillers ($76M)


Howard Anderson Company Spider-Man ($821M); Hannibal ($351M); Jurassic Park III ($368M); Rush Hour 2 ($347M); Scary Movie ($278M)

Imagica USAMy Fair Lady ($72M); Mysteries of Egypt – IMAX ($45M); Island of the Sharks - IMAX ($10.7M); Siegfried & Roy: The Magic Box -IMAX($5.23M)


B/G/L Post Evil Dead II ($5.92M); New Best Friend ($46.3K)

Buena Vista ImagingThe Lion King ($951M); Beauty and the Beast ($425M); Armageddon ($553M); Toy Story ($362M); As Good As It Gets ($314M)

CentropolisGodzilla ($379M); What Women Want ($374M); How the Grinch Stole Christmas ($345M); Stuart Little ($300M); The Patriot ($215M)

Cinesite (Hollywood) Titanic ($2.1B); Mission: Impossible II ($546M); Armageddon ($553M); Ocean's Eleven ($450M); Rush Hour 2 ($347M)

The Secret Lab (TSL)Unbreakable ($248M); Gone in 60 Seconds ($237M); The Princess Diaries ($165M); Snow Dogs ($115M); Disney's The Kid ($110M)

2002 and Prior

Available Light 

Bill Cruse & Associates
Blue Sky/VFX
Boss Films
Boy Wonder

CFI Optical
Chandler Group
Cinergi Efx.
Coast Productions
Colossal Pictures
CRC (Cinema Research)

DeGraf / Wahrman
Digital Anvil
Digital Magic
Digital Muse
Digital Productions
Disney Visual Effects
Dream Quest Images
Eastern Opticals (NYC)
EEG (Entertainment Effects Group)
EFX Unlimited Inc. (NYC)
Encore Efx.

Hollywood Optical

Ferren & Associates
Film Effects of Hollywood
Flat Earth
Freeze Frame/Cinefx
Gray Matter 
Jack Rabin & Associates 
LA Effects Group
Landmark Entertainment
Look Out Mountain
Magi Synthivision
Mass Illusions
Master Film Effects
Master Film Effects
Metrolight Studios
MGM Optical Dept.
Modern Film Effects
Motion Opticals
Movie Magic
National Screen 
Netter Digital
Optical Cinema Service
The Optical House-LA
The Optical House-NYC

Pittard Sullivan Design

Pixel Envy
POP (Pacific Ocean Post)
Post Group Film Unit
Ray Mercer
Robert Abel & Associates
RGA-NY (Robert Greenberg & Associates)
Side Effects
Skyline Digital Images
Station X

Threshold Digital
Total Optical Productions
TNT Optical
Triple I

Universal Digital Department
Universal Title & Optical
Universal Matte Department
Van Der Veer Photo Effects
VI Efx. – 20th Century Fox
Vision Arts
Virtual Magic
Warner Digital 



  1. but can we put a note to Pacific Title & Art Studio that the name was brought back to life in 2012. It did not deserve failure in 2009, that was just plain stupid!

  2. in fact you can post it as 1919 to 2009 and 2012 ongoing

  3. Can you remove Pacific Data Images from the shuttered list? They were bought by DreamWorks in 2000 and are doing fine.

  4. No problem, thank you Mr. Rosendahl

  5. I was surprised to see my company included in your list. To paraphrase Mark Twain - the report of the demise of Zoptic is an exaggeration. Please make the appropriate correction.