Lionhead announces closure of The Movies Online

Those of us who saw the signs feel like prophets this morning, as Lionhead formally announces that The Movies Online site will be shut down as of December 5, 2008.

Rest assured, this in no way indicates an end to the creative coalition that has grouped together to form The TMUnderground. In fact, the updated welcome message on the home page states, "Welcome to TMUnderground, a site for machinima made with TheMovies, MovieStorm, iClone, Antics3d, and other purpose-built programs for making animated movies, as well as occasional live-action projects from our members. Watch, comment, rate, and enjoy."

Over the next few weeks this blog will feature some of the outstanding individuals that have demonstrated themselves to be the cream of the crop of TMO and continue to maintain that stride.

The TMUnderground forum is actively discussing this issue here.

The official Lionhead announcement can be found here.

It's a bittersweet day, especially for the members who have been around since TMO's inception 3 years ago.


Matt Kelland said...

It's sad to see TMO closing. The Movies was a great inspiration to us when we started Moviestorm 4 years ago, and was one of the ground-breaking tools in the whole machinima space (even though they never used that word). Lionhead did a fantastic job, and it's quite amazing that it's still in use today - most PC titles only last a couple of years.

Thanks for including Moviestorm in your new welcome message. I very much look forward to seeing what you guys create with it. There are some really talented people among you, and I hope Lionhead's announcement won't affect your creativity and passion for making movies.

TMUnderground said...

I think Lionhead was clueless about the capabilities of the software when they released it. It was marketed as a sim game rather than a machinima tool.

We have been fortunate enough to have some incredibly talented modders who have helped realize the potential of the program - allowing us to retexture sets, use custom props, opening all scenes in all sets, sets used as props, completely customizeable sets, the list goes on and on.

And now some of our members are implementing outside editing programs such as magix and ulead, as well as making hybrid movies combining TheMovies with Moviestorm, iclone, etc. It's an exciting time!


Elbow said...

I haven't been involved with machinima long enough to have built many memories about TMO. I guess it's like many things that cross our paths in life. We, at times, only get a short glimpse or a short visit before things move us on. TMO gave us the tools and a place to be creative and to express ourselves. That's always a good thing.

To what extent Lionhead is responsible for where we are today with the new programs, tools and visions of this new breed of film makers, I don't have the background to guess at an answer. I can say that after making only a few films, I have a deep excitement for things to come, and in part, TMO gave me that.
Thanks TMO

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