Software Developer - Crowd Tools

Production Technology, Software Product Development Vancouver, Canada Montréal, Quebec Toronto, Ontario


Position at DNEG

Software Developer – Crowd Tools


Key Purpose of the Job:


The Crowd team at DNEG creates and maintains a suite of tools and software to facilitate complex crowd authoring work in the production of award-winning Visual Effects and Feature Animation work. As a Software Developer on this team, you will implement tools to generate, manipulate and render large-scale digital crowds, as well as work to improve the performance and capabilities of our core software stack that underpins all of the tools we develop. Your primary DCC platform will be SideFX Houdini, with the majority of the code written in C++.

The tools you will be working on will be used in the creation of large scale crowds, ranging from simple cheering audiences in stadiums (Bohemian Rhapsody), to shoaling fish, battling armies, and even swarms of complex mechanical insect-like rippers (Pacific Rim:Uprising).  Upcoming projects require crowds of even greater complexity with agent-to-agent interaction.

The Software Developers in our Crowd team are highly technical and methodical in their approach to solving complex problems. You will be required to:

  • Implement creative tools for Crowd artists to author and choreograph multitudes of agents in complex shots.
  • Investigate solutions and techniques to improve our in-house and off-the-shelf Crowd tools and software packages, assuming responsibility for the low-level integration into our pipeline and high-level functionality.
  • Develop motion synthesis algorithms to augment procedural animation techniques.
  • Provide technical assistance to shows in their day-to-day use of workflows relating to Crowd work, dealing with bug reports and support requests swiftly and efficiently.
  • Produce technical specifications and documentation for the tools being developed.
  • As well as being technically proficient, you will also need to be a good communicator – you will be producing technical documentation, communicating development timeframes and presenting your ideas to stakeholders and senior developers in your team.
  • You will also be interacting regularly with artists and non-technical production staff, therefore your ability to clearly articulate complex technical information to non-technical people will help you thrive in this role.


We value your expertise, and with the help of our dedicated Technology Project Managers you will be able to plan your own development projects, working with senior developers and stakeholders to schedule development work and establish your own project deadlines. The variety of opportunities available within the Production Technology department allows our smart, creative and adaptable software developers the opportunity to learn and grow while working at the centre of a dynamic studio.


Must Have 

  • Degree in Computer Science, Computer Engineering, and relevant programming experience.
  • Extensive programming experience in C++, practical experience or knowledge of Python programming.


Nice to Have

  • Experience using C++ and Python APIs for applications such as Houdini or Maya
  • Experience using VEX in Houdini
  • Proven experience developing VFX-related tools.
  • Practical knowledge of programming libraries such as OpenGL
  • Experience with UI toolkits such as Qt/PySide and Houdini’s viewer states
  • Demonstrable research and academic achievements in the areas of crowd generation or animation synthesis OR production experience in animation synthesis techniques.
  • Practical experience with Agile software development methodologies in a team environment



We would not be able to produce award-winning work without our Production Technology department, which is committed to nurturing an inclusive, diverse and exciting workplace. Our technical directors have a variety of backgrounds and originate from a number of different countries, working across the globe at the forefront of technology in the industry.


About Us


We are DNEG, one of the world's leading visual effects, animation and stereo conversion companies for feature film and television, with studios in London, Vancouver, Mumbai, Los Angeles, Chennai, Montreal, Chandigarh, Hyderabad and Goa. 


About Us
We are DNEG, one of the world’s leading visual effects and animation companies for the creation of award-winning feature film, television, and multiplatform content. We employ more than 10,000 people with worldwide offices and studios across North America (Los Angeles, Montréal, Toronto, Vancouver), Europe (London), Asia (Bangalore, Mohali, Chennai, Mumbai) and Australia (Sydney).