Answers to some of the frequently asked questions about RenderMan.
Why should I use RenderMan?
Unlike other solutions, RenderMan is the product of a working production studio that remains the paramount innovator in modern movie animation and visual effects rendering. RenderMan is the leading choice in the film industry today, delivering more shots by far than any other rendering solution. In choosing to use RenderMan, you are benefitting from the same expertise and production proven technology used by Pixar and most major visual effects studios, along with the research resources of the entire Walt Disney organization. There is no other rendering development program that can compare in depth, flexibility, and capability.
What recent movies have used RenderMan?
You just can’t miss RenderMan at the movies! Just a few of the recent films you may have seen that heavily relied on RenderMan include Star Wars: The Force Awakens, The Martian, The Jungle Book, Finding Dory, Mad Max: Fury Road, Ex Machina, and Batman versus SuperMan: Dawn of Justice. For full details of recent films and other projects that have relied on RenderMan, visit our movies and awards page.
Can RenderMan be used on its own to create animation?
No. RenderMan itself is not animation software and requires scene data from compatible modeling and animation authoring software or other external sources to generate photorealistic images. RenderMan is most commonly used with such well known software solutions as Autodesk's Maya, Side Effects Houdini, The Foundry's KATANA, and The Blender Foundation’s Blender. Maxon's Cinema4D will be supported shortly.
Does Pixar use a special version of RenderMan?
Not at all. To some this is a surprise, but there is not a "better" version of RenderMan used inside Pixar, and in fact the latest RenderMan 21 release includes lights and materials used in our most recent movies such as Finding Dory. In fact, Pixar's render farm has thousands of processors all rendering with the very same RenderMan that is available to you today.
What kind of support can I expect?
RenderMan Support is some of the best in the business. Through our dedicated support forums, you can get answers directly from Pixar's Support team, often direct from the actual developers who write the software.
Is it easy to learn how to use RenderMan?
If you're familiar with programs like Autodesk's Maya, you can begin using RenderMan right away. RenderMan is now simple to get started, and you can quickly begin taking advantage of RenderMan's unique features.
Does Pixar provide a network rendering solution?
Yes. Tractor is a modern and robust solution designed to scale to the very largest rendering farms. Used by some of the biggest production studios in the industry, Tractor is efficient, flexible, and cost-effective for all types of job-distribution, not just RenderMan.
Great ... but where can I ask technical questions about RenderMan?
How can I buy RenderMan?