Bob Sabiston

Programmer, Film producer

1967 –


Who is Bob Sabiston?

Bob Sabiston is an American film art director, computer programmer, and creator of the Rotoshop software program for computer animation. Sabiston began developing software as a graduate researcher in the MIT Media Lab from 1986 to 1991. While at MIT, and also after moving to Austin, Texas, in 1993, Sabiston used his 2D/3D software to create several short films, including God's Little Monkey, "Beat Dedication", and "Grinning Evil Death". "Grinning Evil Death" was widely seen on the first episode of MTV's "Liquid Television" show. "God's Little Monkey" won the Prix Ars Electronica Golden Nica award for 1994.

In 1997, he developed his interpolating rotoscope program, Rotoshop, for an animation contest sponsored by MTV. The software was used to produce a series of 25 30-second interstitials in New York, collectively entitled "Project Incognito." He moved back to Austin in 1998 and with the help of local artists made the short film "RoadHead." This was followed in 1999 by short "Snack and Drink" in collaboration with Tommy Pallotta. "Snack and Drink" won several film festival awards and resides in the MOMA video collection. The shorts collection "Figures of Speech" followed in late 1999, for PBS. In 2000, Sabiston hired thirty graphic artists in the Austin area to help make Richard Linklater's groundbreaking film Waking Life.

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  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology

on July 23, 2013


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