Sony’s Animation and VFX Group Bolts Hollywood for Canada

The real-life exodus of animated art jobs continues

Sony Imageworks is heading north.

The VFX and animation house — which handles all of Sony’s animated films and special effects on both internal studio movies (like “The Amazing Spider-Man”) and outside projects (“Angry Birds” film) will relocate its headquarters from Culver City to a 74,000-square-foot facility in Vancouver, Canada.

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The city offers a 58% tax incentive, which has helped it attract an increasing amount of film and animation production.

The move, announced late Thursday night, will be complete by 2015, when the new facility will have room for up to 700 employees. It’s unclear how many LA-based employees will be asked to move to Canada — or how many will consider doing so.

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Sony is just the latest studio to move its VFX offices out of Los Angeles, which is working to pass tax incentives to hold on to what remains of its shredded production community. Rhythm & Hues, the studio that provided Oscar-winning effects for “The Life of Pi,” declared bankruptcy last year, leading to protests from artists and labor organizers.