The Orphanage (company)

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The Orphanage was a visual effects studio located in California. It had offices in Los Angeles and San Francisco. It was co-founded in 1999 by Stu Maschwitz, Jonathan Rothbart, and Scott Stewart, who all previously worked at Industrial Light & Magic. Scott Kirsner at Hollywood Reporter[1] interviewed a couple of the founders, and writes about the company and its plans. Stu Maschwitz created the Magic Bullet software which gives video a film look, and wrote a book about guerrilla filmmaking called The DV Rebel's Guide: An All-Digital Approach to Making Killer Action Movies on the Cheap.

The Orphanage was known for its work on both commercials and features. The company then launched but later closed Orphanage Animation Studios[1] which was headed up by Genndy Tartakovsky, and was due to make their film debut with the ill-fated Power of the Dark Crystal. They never made any projects except for Sym-Bionic Titan.

The Orphanage did approximately 640 shots for the "That Yellow Bastard" section of Sin City (2005).[2] as well as three other films with Robert Rodriguez, Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over, The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3-D, and the Quentin Tarantino/Robert Rodriguez co-directed double feature Grindhouse.

The company has worked on a number of Hollywood blockbusters including Superman Returns, Night at the Museum, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest & At World's End, and the Korean blockbuster The Host. They created the Head-up display (HUD) for the hi-tech suit of armour in the Marvel Studios production of Iron Man, for which their work was nominated for a 2008 VES Award (for Best Compositing).

They have also created commercials and a handful of Super Bowl spots for clients as varied as Comcast, Toshiba, HP, Benadryl, Nicoderm, and several award-winning spots for Sony PlayStation's Ratchet & Clank.

On February 4, 2009, the company announced it was suspending operations indefinitely, after 10 years in the business. The announcement was made by company co-founders Stu Maschwitz, Scott Stewart, and Jonathan Rothbart, and announced on Mr. Maschwitz's blog.[3] No immediate notice was posted on the company's website. Although the announcement gave no reason for the closing, bloggers attributed the closing to general economic conditions.[4][5]

The Orphanage selected filmography[edit]

Year Notable films

Vanilla Sky


Point of Origin
Path To War
Jackass The Movie


Jeepers Creepers 2
Spy Kids 3D: Game Over
Anger Management
Charlies Angels: Full Throttle


50 First Dates
The Day After Tomorrow
Iron Jawed Angels
Garfield (The Movie)
The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement
Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow
The Forgotten


Sin City
The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3D
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Aeon Flux


Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest
Superman Returns
Night At The Museum
The Host


Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End
The Last Mimzy
Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer
Live Free or Die Hard
I Know Who Killed Me
Blade Runner: The Final Cut


In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale
Iron Man
Will Eisner's The Spirit
You Don't Mess with the Zohan
Red Cliff




Iron Man 2


External links[edit]