Cinesite Nabs Majority Stake in Quebec Animation Studio Squeeze

VFX and animation house Cinesite has acquired a majority stake in Quebec animation studio Squeeze, the company said Tuesday.

Terms of the acquisition deal were not disclosed. But Cinesite — headquartered in the UK and having moved from creating digital visual effects to feature animation on Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and other tentpoles — has added Squeeze, based in Quebec City and Montreal, to its animation production network.

Squeeze did animation work on Cracké and Marvel Studios’ What If? series. Moving into the Cinesite orbit follows the UK parent acquiring L’Atelier Animation, a Montreal studio specializing in feature-length 3D animation and series. Squeeze has over 200 artists and was co-founded in 2011 by Denis Doré and Patrick Beaulieu, who were joined in 2014 by CFO François Houde.

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Squeeze does animation for Disney, Marvel, Universal, Illumination, Supercell, Warner Bros. and Ubisoft, and has a mocap studio in Montreal. The Quebec animation house created Cracké, the animated TV series airing in over 210 territories and generating over 600 million views on digital platforms. 

Squeeze, while retaining its brand, will continue under CEO Doré and CFO Houde, who will work with Cinesite Animation COO Brad Wald to integrate the company and expand their Montreal footprint. The Squeeze deal will bring to over 780 employees working across Canada for the Cinesite group.

Squeeze is also the fifth studio to join the Cinesite network after Image Engine in 2015, Nitrogen Studios (renamed Cinesite Vancouver) in 2017, German VFX studio Trixter in 2018 and most recently L’Atelier Animation in July.  

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