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Pixar Animation Studios Releases RenderMan 24

Introducing XPU, Stylized Looks, and a New Shading System

EMERYVILLE, CA - June 29th, 2021 - Pixar today released RenderMan® version 24, the biggest release in its long history, introducing a next-generation rendering architecture for animation and visual effects, RenderMan XPU™. This major release brings major advancements to look development and interactivity for feature film VFX and animation. With the launch of XPU™, Pixar introduces a completely new renderer capable of utilizing both CPU and GPU to the VFX industry. 

RenderMan XPU™ now adds next level live rendering capabilities to the pipeline, providing immediate feedback on assets of feature film complexity, allowing faster iterations for artists. The release also features a shading system for layered materials called MaterialX Lama. Originally developed at Industrial Light & Magic, MaterialX Lama has been proven in production for years, and this state-of-the-art shading system provides RenderMan’s first step towards a deep MaterialX integration. Another highlight of this release is a completely new toolset for crafting non-photorealistic renders with endless possibilities, called RenderMan Stylized Looks™. 

“Release 24 is a milestone for film production at Pixar Animation Studios and also our customers to utilize the full power of RenderMan XPU in production. With layered materials and Stylized Looks we deliver a complete new set of tools for artists to push visual quality even further. We are very excited to provide RenderMan for the fast growing Blender community to support their effort in great filmmaking.”

- Oliver Meiseberg, RenderMan Vice President, Pixar Animation Studios 

Version 24 offers many other significant advancements, including streamlined support for the industry standard ACES color management system, live statistics, cutting-edge advancements in surface realism, and a complete rewrite of RenderMan for Blender®.

Finally, RenderMan artist tools for Autodesk’s Maya®, Foundry’s Katana®, and SideFX Houdini® as well as Solaris have been updated for version 24, along with upgrades to RenderMan’s Preset Browser and library of materials. 

“RenderMan was the obvious choice for our first animated feature at DNEG, and I am particularly excited about how well it integrates with Solaris and USD. As we advance our animation pipeline, we look forward to using the new lookdev tools in RenderMan 24.”

- Paul Baaske, Workflow Architect, DNEG Feature Animation

“ILM has used Lama to create high-quality modular materials for several years, and we’re very excited that our collaboration with Pixar will allow us to share it with the rest of the world, both in RenderMan and as part of the MaterialX standard. We can’t wait to see how talented artists everywhere will choose to harness Lama’s potential.”

- André Mazzone - Look/Render Engineering Lead, ILM

"The flexibility of the new Lama shading system is going to allow us to approach our complex layered materials with greater efficiency and accuracy. With its robust set of responses and controls, it's an amazing release for look development."

- Eric Wachtman, CG Supervisor, Laika

To get artists started Pixar will update the RenderMan Fundamentals with new training materials on

RenderMan version 24 is available for download today at for customers on maintenance. Individual licenses of RenderMan are available for $595, and $250 for yearly maintenance. Quantity discounts are available. Researchers, individual artists, and students creating non-commercial projects will have access to Free Non-Commercial RenderMan the same day as the commercial release. Visit for more information, or contact with questions or to make a purchase.

About Pixar Animation Studios

Pixar Animation Studios, a wholly owned subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company, is an Academy Award®-winning film studio with world-renowned technical, creative and production capabilities in the art of computer animation. The Northern California studio has created some of the most successful and beloved animated films of all time, including “Toy Story,” “Monsters, Inc.,” “Cars,” “The Incredibles,” “Ratatouille,” “WALL•E,” “Up,” “Brave,” “Inside Out,” “Coco” and “Soul.” Its movies and technology have won 40 Academy Awards® and the films have grossed more than $14 billion at the worldwide box office. “Luca,” Pixar’s 24th feature, is currently streaming on Disney+.


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