General Technical Director
The Secret LabBurbank, CA
Full Time Job
At Walt Disney Animation Studios we have a deep commitment to the philosophy that creativity inspires technology, and technology inspires creativity. Technical Directors are responsible for providing support to our artist teams in a variety of areas including writing tools to facilitate the CG animation process, acting as a liaison to software and system engineers, and front-line artist support.
They function as an integral part of the artist departments they're associated with, designing or optimizing processes and tools to best fit production needs. They should look at production systems holistically and have the ability to visualize the larger pipeline, understanding the impact of their actions, and how to optimize processes and tools. Technical Directors also have an important role in our ongoing efforts to push the boundaries of what we're capable of producing in our various toolsets.
• Novel interaction interfaces and models for artists
• Tools for procedurally generating worlds
• Creative workflows built on existing platforms to solve production-specific problems
• Evolutions and revolutions of our production data pipeline
We are looking for a Technical Director to join our Animation studio, targeting tool development and support Production. In this role, you will partner with artists, production and technology leadership, other technical directors, cross-team software engineers, and other technologists and researchers across the Walt Disney Studios. You will be on the bleeding edge designing and implementing innovative workflows and state of the art solutions.
What does it mean to be a developer here at WDAS?
• Our TDs provide support to our artists in a variety of areas including scripting and coding tools to facilitate the CG animation process
• Design and optimize processes and tools to fit production needs
• View production systems holistically and have the ability to visualize the larger pipeline while understanding the impact of their actions
• Act as a collaborator with the larger Technical Director department
• Active engagement with artistic and technical leadership in the ongoing evolution of the production process
• Become involved in mentoring apprentices and other Technical Directors in tools and processes
• Active engagement with the Technology Department in the research and development of new methodologies
• Involvement in the positive representation of Walt Disney Animation Studios in the larger filmmaking and computer graphics community
• Bachelor's Degree in Computer Science, a related field or equivalent
• Strong scripting and programming skills including Python and C
• Ability to write and apply innovative techniques
• Strong problem solving skills
• Ability to work in a collaborative environment, offer mentorship, and take direction from department and show leadership
• Experience in a consumer support role
• Understanding of computer graphics foundational concepts, and algorithms
• Knowledge of visual effects, animation, graphics techniques and algorithms
• Strong mathematical fundamentals, including linear algebra and numerical methods
• Strong understanding of coding process, standards, continuous integration and testing principles
• Software development experience on production systems
• Advanced Maya experience and in-depth knowledge of Linux
• Understanding of environmental effects simulation techniques and Houdini
• Advanced experience with modern global illumination renderingSolid understanding of node-based compositing packages (i.e. Shake, Nuke, or similar)
• Experience with game engines such as Unreal, Unity, Lumberyard
• Experience in technical leadership
• Master's or Ph.D. in Computer Science
About Walt Disney Animation Studios:
Combining masterful artistry and storytelling with groundbreaking technology, Walt Disney Animation Studios is a filmmaker-driven animation studio responsible for creating some of the most beloved films ever made. WDAS continues to build on its rich legacy of innovation and creativity, from the first fully-animated feature film, 1937's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, to 2019's Frozen 2, the biggest animated film of all time, to our 60th animated feature, Encanto, releasing November 2021. Among the studio's timeless creations are Pinocchio, Sleeping Beauty, The Jungle Book, The Little Mermaid, The Lion King, Frozen, Big Hero 6 and Zootopia.
About The Walt Disney Company:
The Walt Disney Company, together with its subsidiaries and affiliates, is a leading diversified international family entertainment and media enterprise with the following business segments: media networks, parks and resorts, studio entertainment, consumer products and interactive media. From humble beginnings as a cartoon studio in the 1920s to its preeminent name in the entertainment industry today, Disney proudly continues its legacy of creating world-class stories and experiences for every member of the family. Disney's stories, characters and experiences reach consumers and guests from every corner of the globe. With operations in more than 40 countries, our employees and cast members work together to create entertainment experiences that are both universally and locally cherished.
This position is with The Secret Lab, which is part of a business segment we call Walt Disney Animation Studios.
The Secret Lab is an equal opportunity employer. Applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability or protected veteran status. Disney fosters a business culture where ideas and decisions from all people help us grow, innovate, create the best stories and be relevant in a rapidly changing world.