Daniel Langlois, founder of Softimage, found dead in Dominica.

Daniel Langlois, the founder of Softimage, was found dead with his spouse, Dominique Marchand, in the remains of a burned car in Dominica, an island in the Caribbean, on Friday.

A story in Dominica News Online today said that three non-nationals and one Dominican are in custody. It quoted Dominican Minister of National Security and Legal Affairs Rayburn Blackmoore, who said, “Official requests for investigative support from Canadian authorities have been formally made, aligning with Dominica’s pursuit of justice in this matter.

“The government will provide the police force with all the resources needed to investigate this matter and to bring the perpetrators of this terrible crime to justice. Crimes like these do not only hurt international relations but this crime in particular has sent shockwaves throughout the island and left the employees, family and community of the victims in mourning.”

Daniel Langlois. Photo courtesy of Coulibri Ridge

Born in Jonquière, Québec, in 1957, Langlois made a name for himself in both the fields of technology and the arts when, in 1986, he founded Softimage, a company that developed 3D animation software, before selling it to Microsoft eight years later for some $200 million.

Softimage’s software has been used in many big-budget productions, such as Jurassic Park, Titanic and The Lord of the Rings. The company was awarded an Oscar in 1997.

That same year, Langlois created the Daniel Langlois Foundation, with a mission to support artistic and scientific research dedicated to the advancement and understanding of the relationship between humans and their natural and technological environment.

In 1999, he founded the Ex-Centris cinema, a mecca for repertory cinema. In December 2000, he bought the Cinéma du Parc and managed it until July 2006. In 2011, Langlois sold the Ex-Centris Complex’s movie theatres to the Centre du Cinéma Parallèle Inc.

In 1998, Langlois and his foundation founded the NGO Resilient Dominica, after Hurricane Maria hit Dominica on September 18, 2017, with the goal of rebuilding and strengthening resilience in the communities of Soufriere, Scotts Head and Gallion.

Lately, he has been involved in sustainable and eco-responsible development projects such as the off-grid eco-friendly Coulibri Ridge hotel project in Dominica.

Langlois held honourary doctorates from the universities of Sherbrooke, McGill, Concordia, UQAM and Ottawa. He was also a Knight of the Ordre national du Québec and an Officer of the Order of Canada. Earlier this year, he received the Dominican Commonwealth Meritorious Service Award.

In a statement announcing the couple’s passing, Coulibri Ridge said, “Daniel and Dominique were trailblazers in so many ways, most recently as founders and operators of Coulibri Ridge Resort. Their commitment to sustainability set a standard in the tourism industry, and their passion for the environment and helping others has touched the lives of many who experienced the magic of Coulibri Ridge. Their legacy will continue to live on through the efforts of The Daniel Langlois Foundation, the Resilient Dominica Project, and the Humane Society of Dominica.”

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Renaud Larue-Langlois
Renaud Larue-Langlois
Half journalist, half IT Manager, full technology nerd. After a 25+ year career in IT, becoming a writer was a natural choice for Renaud. It literally runs in his family. His areas of interest are... anything, as long as it's technology-related. He can be reached at [email protected]

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