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Character Software Developer

Research and Development – Toronto, Ontario
Department Research and Development
Employment Type Full-Time
Minimum Experience Experienced


Position Overview 

SideFX is seeking an intermediate to senior character software developer to aid in the reboot of Houdini’s Character Rigging and Animation environment. This role involves applying the latest state of the art techniques to our flagship product, Houdini, in collaboration with our users and technical directors.

As a member of the SideFX Research and Development group, you would be working with the brightest minds in the CG industry. Our R&D team has received many prestigious industry awards, including four Technical Achievement Awards from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, an Academy Award of Merit (Oscar®), a Technology and Engineering Emmy® Award from NATAS, and four back-to-back Editor's Choice Innovation Awards from CG World Magazine. Movies using our toolset have received the Oscar® for Best Visual Effects every year in the past two decades.  


Key Duties and Responsibilities

  • Design, develop, and extend a wide range of character rigging, animation, and deformation solutions with an emphasis on real-time performance, ease of use and multi-platform deployment
  • Identify and optimize bottlenecks in Houdini’s character toolset
  • Keep up to date with the latest academic and industry breakthroughs; independently research and develop ideas to continuously push our procedural technology forward
  • Collaborate with other R&D staff, technical directors and animators to produce best-in-class frameworks and next-generation workflows
  • Other duties as assigned

Required Skills and Experience

  • Computer Science degree or equivalent industry experience, with a record of academic and professional excellence
  • Strong, modern C++ programming skills and knowledge
  • Experience developing within a large existing codebase, collaborating with a large team
  • Ability to work independently and within a large team
  • Strong communication skills with the ability to clearly convey complex technical information
  • Familiarity with performance optimization and parallel programming techniques
  • Passion for graphics and for interacting with end-user clients and artistic staff
  • Excellent problem-solving skills

Bonus Skills 

  • Working knowledge of current character rigging, animation, and deformation techniques
  • Demonstrable knowledge of a high-end DCC application (e.g. Houdini, Maya, Softimage)
  • Familiarity with natural motion and statistical methods for Machine Learning
  • Experience with cross-platform development
  • Working Python knowledge
  • UI/UX design and development experience with an appreciation of design aesthetics

Company Profile

For over thirty years, SideFX has been providing artists with procedural 3D animation and visual effects tools designed to produce the highest-quality cinematic results. We are passionate about what our customers do because our roots are in production, both as artists and as pioneering technical innovators. SideFX has been recognized by the Academy of Motion Pictures, Arts and Science several times for its flagship software product Houdini and its seminal procedural-based technology. 

Houdini is used by the world’s top film, TV, and game studios to create blockbuster movies such as Black Panther and Moana, captivating TV shows like American Gods and Games of Thrones, and hit video games like Horizon Zero Dawn and Mafia III. Our customers include Disney Feature Animation, Pixar, Weta Digital, Blue Sky, Electronic Arts, Microsoft Game Studios, Blizzard Entertainment, and many more.


Our transit-friendly head office location, directly adjacent to Union Station in the heart of downtown Toronto, is open-concept with a relaxed style that includes, casual dress, and wraparound views from the 14th floor.

SideFX is committed to inclusion and diversity. We encourage all qualified applicants to apply. Please advise if you require accommodation and it will be provided. 

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  • Location
    Toronto, Ontario
  • Department
    Research and Development
  • Employment Type
  • Minimum Experience
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