Did anyone use USD in a animation film?

I wonder whether usd is supported well in all production processes of an animation film. If so, what are the DCCs involved?

USD has been used in several animated features.

Of the top of my head (though my timeline might be off by one film in either direction):

Of course to start, every Pixar film since Brave has been based on USD.

DreamWorks adopted USD fairly early and I think every recent film by DWA is USD based.

Walt Disney Animation also has used USD for several films since Raya/Encanto

Animal Logic as well has used it for several projects, I believe since the second Lego Movie?

Each studio uses a variety of DCCs but some common ones will be Maya and Houdini

Do you know any documents about real practise in these films?
We want to use USD in our pipeline(or a new adapted pipeline), but It seems hard to find a best practise of whole process to refer.

I wonder if anyone knows if the SIGGRAPH sessions are available anywhere? Those have been the best so far on documenting practices.

Otherwise the only “documentation” for workflows I know of is stuff like the ALab2 asset from Animal Logic which is well structured as an example Animal Logic ALab - USD Production Scene - DPEL

If we’re talking ‘standards’ I think one could take reference from example assets and asset structure guidelines out there. But the thing with “USD” being universal also means that it can be bend many ways and brings along flexibility that make it somewhat harder to say: “This is the standard.”

Example assets

Not all are ‘production scenes’ but they are all, in some form, references to how USD can be used.

Asset Structure

USD Guides

If you’re just looking for an even bigger list of ‘resources’ - then this vfxpro99/usd-resources list may help, including a list of integrations for USD

USD has been around a long time at Pixar, but also as @dhruvgovil pointed out has a track record within VFX in multiple studios. However, over the last few years this has even extended to other industries with Omniverse and other integrations pushing boundaries there as well with big support from big companies like Nvidia, Pixar, SideFX, Autodesk, Maxon, etcera.

However, even though that’s the case it’s a big product with constant development so resources from years ago might not apply as much to Today, especially with things like “what DCCs support it?” and “what integrations are there?” because it’s a massive evolving ecosystem. As such, you might benefit from seeing “recent” usage, e.g. searching and watching Youtube talks by big studios on their usage of USD in recent VFX projects or alike (or wherever your interests are).

The USD Working Group presentations recordings are just a small blip of what is out there.


Here are the relevant SIGGRAPH sessions from OpenUSD Day 2023

and a follow-up roundtable – https://www.youtube.com/live/sLkedaRnTFE?si=p8XU57zH9xibCJPG

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Alan Blevins and Mike Murray from Dreamworks Animation, gave this talk at Siggraph 2018: “Zero to USD in 80 days”. The paper and the slides are available, but not the video.
Paper: https://research.dreamworks.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/ZeroToUsdIn80Days-Edited.pdf
Slides: https://research.dreamworks.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/Zero-to-USD-with-notes.pdf