After months of behind-the-scenes planning, and with two projects already in the can, New York-based design, effects and production house Charlex has announced the unveiling of its new 3D design division. "I've been doing it quietly over the last six months," says executive creative director Alex Weil. "I wanted to have my whole thing together before making an announcement, because I like to do things right." The new department includes talent from the worlds of features and gaming, including Bryan Godwin, formerly of Blue Sky Studios; Karl Coyner, who recently worked on the feature Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within; Bill Watral, formerly of Hurd Studios and Curious Pictures; Jeff Chavez, formerly of Wild Brain; Michael Sparber, formerly of Post Perfect and Black Logic; and Charlex veteran John Clausing.
The team has already completed projects for AT&T Wireless via Ogilvy & Mather/New York and for Sunny Delight via Saatchi & Saatchi/New York. "We're getting a lot of results fast," says Weil. Charlex has been expanding in other areas as well, recently adding director Jeet Tailor, formerly of the BBC, and visual effects artist Alan Neidorf, formerly of Black Logic, into the mix. Charlex even has a nascent sound design division in the works. "Last year, we had our best year ever, and my goal was, despite conditions, to beat it," Weil says of the shop's continuing growth, adding that he's reached his goal in 2001.