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DFZ opens, UV/Phactory merge, Tonic hires

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Former Industrial Light + Magic visual effects supervisor Ellen Poon has announced the launch of DFreedomZone, a San Francisco-based company devoted to creating branded content using 3D animation technology. Others involved in the venture include Stephen Dwyer, formerly of Goodby and Venables Bell, as media strategist; Steve Ramirez, former VP of business development and marketing at Wild Brain; and ILM alum David Valentin, who will serve as head of business development. ... In New York, broadcast design house Ultraviolet has merged with 3D animation shop Phactory Productions to form UV Phactory. ... Audio engineer Brian Beatrice, formerly of National Sound, has joined New York music house Tonic.
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