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Digital Town Square

“That’s Cool, Now What? How to Tell Stories in Virtual Reality” 

One hundred and twenty creative leaders in VR, video games, TV, movies, theater and traditional entertainment gathered on February 19, 2015 to discuss the emerging language of VR storytelling.  Following two sessions of presentations and group discussions, the participants broke into five moderated working groups.  The working groups discussed their current thinking on the topic: what approaches carry over from other artistic media; and what issues, approaches, and concerns are new to the VR environment?  A report pulling together the thoughts of this community was published.

The panelists and presenters were:

Matt Apfel, vp, strategy & creative content, Samsung Media Solutions Center America
Danny Bilson, writer/director/producer (EA, THQ, Warner Bros., Disney)
Mark Bolas, director, Mixed Reality Lab, associate director, USC’s ICT, associate professor, USC’s SCA Interactive Media Division
Philip Lelyveld, sr. program manager, ETC
Alex McDowell, narrative designer, creative director, 5D GlobalStudio, Professor of Practice, USC School of Cinematic Arts, Media Arts + Practice (Intel’s “Leviathan,” “Minority Report,” “Watchmen”)
Charlie Otte, creative director, Thinkwell (Guthrie, Lincoln Center, Brooklyn Academy of Music)
Jon Snoody, R&D studio executive, Walt Disney Imagineering (“Captain EO,” “Indiana Jones™ Adventure,” “Aladdin’s Magic Carpet Ride”)
Sean Stewart, founder, Three Story House (former CD Xbox Studios, award-winning novelist, co-creator ARG genre)
 
VR experience demos were provided by Samsung Electronics America, Jaunt, Assimilate, Emblematic, Funktronics Labs, InnerSpace VR, Metaverse Systems, Nurulize, Otherworld Interactive,  Reel FX, VRSE, VisiSonics, and WEVR (formerly WemoLab).

 
Read our full report here
 
Sponsors:

Participating Sponsors:

 

OTOY SAMSUNG

 

Supporting Sponsor:

 

JAUNT

 

Previous Events

 

On Thursday, June 12, 2014, the ETC@USC hosted a Digital Town Square at the London West Hollywood Hotel: “Realizing The Promise of UHD.”

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The introduction of digital cameras that strived to match or exceed film negatives’ capabilities and of UHD displays that support the explosion in home viewing have set in motion a re-evaluation of the professional entertainment supply chain. New practices, technologies and standards are being proposed to address image quality, the creative process, storage and transport roadblocks, the audience experience, and more. But are the major opportunities and challenges being addressed? The time is right to take stock of the progress to date, to examine and evaluate the solutions on the table to and to prepare for the future.

Filmmakers, display manufacturers, senior executives, and technologists from the content supply chain at studios, networks, and post-production/distribution companies and vendors participated in an interactive 360° forum examining the 4K supply chain options that will further the artistic and business interests of the entertainment and CE industry while delivering a demonstrably improved viewing experience. Among the topics of focus were resolution, high dynamic range (HDR), high frame rate (HFR), post and distribution workflows, new compression and color space solutions, UHD TV innovations, refresh rates, and other settings.

Presenters and Speakers:

Wendy Aylsworth, SVP Technology, Warner Bros. Technical Operations

Bill Baggelaar, SVP Technology, Colorworks / Post Production Services, Sony Pictures Entertainment

Nick Colsey, VP, Business Development, Sony Electronics

Jon Fairhurst, Head, CE Standards, Sharp Labs of America

Chris Fetner, Director, Content Relations, Netflix

Joe Kane, CEO, Joe Kane Productions / Consultant, Samsung Electronics

Howard Lukk, VP, Digital Production Technology, Walt Disney Studios

N (Nandhu) Nandhakumar, SVP, LG Technology Center of America

Daryn Okada, ASC, Director of Photography

Dave Schnuelle, Senior Director, Image Technology, Dolby Laboratories

Yasser Syed, Ph.D., Comcast Distinguished Engineer, Comcast Cable

Moderator: 

Jim Houston, Principal, Starwatcher Digital

Sponsored By:

Aspera_IBM_drafts

Gallery

 

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Digital Cinema Lab (DCL)

The Digital Cinema lab has relocated to the University of Southern California campus!

Eileen Norris Cinema Theatre
 3507 Trousdale Parkway
Los Angeles, CA 90089
Tel: (213) 743-1600

Parking (USC Map Grid indicators)
USC Map PDF
Entrance off Jefferson Blvd and Royal St: Gate 4 (G3)
Parking Structure D (G4)
Norris Theatre (E4)

Brief History

The Digital Cinema Laboratory opened at the historic Hollywood Pacific Theatre in October 2000 to perform research and establish benchmarks regarding standards for digital cinema distribution and exhibition. The DCL has been host to myriad meetings, discussions, tests and demos surrounding digital cinema. ETC and the DCL are often credited for providing the catalyst that made digital cinema a reality rather than a theoretical discussion.

In November 2006, after digital theaters began rolling out in earnest, ETC moved the lab to the Eileen Norris Cinema Theatre on the University of Southern California campus in downtown Los Angeles, where the DCL could continue providing a testing facility at the same time providing a platform for training the next generation of film creators.

DCL Mission

To be a global leader in providing a test bed for digital cinema distribution and exhibition, as well as for the growing use of digital cinema technology in image creation and post production.

To evaluate proposed technology solutions for quality, robustness, and interoperability.

To reach out to the creative community and bring their needs and their artistic and critical skills to bear on solving problems in the transition to digital cinema.

To work with efforts underway around the world, so that digital cinema labs can share test materials and procedures.

To be a showcase for the best in cinema presentation.

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Verizon Joins the Executive Board of the Entertainment Technology Center at USC

Verizon Enterprise Solutions will lend its technology expertise to the Entertainment Technology Center at the University of Southern California (ETC@USC) through a seat on ETC@USC’s executive board. Verizon’s global cloud, IP and wireless networks, managed security services, end-to-end digital content solutions and technology-related professional services are used by media and entertainment companies to create, transport, manage and deliver digital content around the world, on any platform,  anytime.

ETC@USC is a nonprofit, member-funded entertainment technology think tank and research center, affiliated with the USC School of Cinematic Arts. It brings together senior executives, innovators, thought leaders and catalysts in a neutral setting to explore issues related to the creation, distribution and consumption of entertainment content. Verizon’s participation on the executive board will provide media and entertainment companies with opportunities to learn how Verizon’s media-focused solutions, network and technology expertise can help the industry transform its future.

“The goal of the ETC@USC is to bring industry and technology experts together to develop the solutions that will propel us through the next 20 years,” said Kenneth Williams, CEO and executive director of the ETC@USC. “Verizon’s broad set of technologies and deep industry experience will provide a unique voice on the executive board. We look forward to their active participation.”

Scott Spector, global head of Verizon’s media and entertainment vertical, added: “Verizon is committed to the media and entertainment industry, and our participation with ETC@USC will allow us to support and potentially drive innovation in the industry. There’s a vast range of opportunities to integrate technology and improve everything from digital content production through digital distribution, creating an optimal experience for the industry.”

Verizon Enterprise Solutions creates global connections that generate growth, drive business innovation and help shape tomorrow’s biggest ideas. With industry-specific solutions provided over Verizon’s secure mobility, cloud, strategic networking and advanced communications platforms, Verizon helps open new opportunities around the world for innovation, investment and business transformation. Visit www.verizonenterprise.com to learn more.

The Entertainment Technology Center at the University of Southern California (ETC@USC) is a think tank and research center within the USC School of Cinematic Arts that brings together senior executives, innovators, thought leaders, and catalysts from the entertainment, consumer electronics, technology, and services industries along with the academic resources of the University of Southern California to explore and to act upon topics and issues related to the creation, distribution, and consumption of entertainment content.  ETC@USC helps drive collaborative projects among its member companies and engages with next generation consumers to understand the impact of emerging technology on all aspects of the entertainment industry, especially technology development and implementation, the creative process, business models, and future trends. (www.etcenter.org)

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, Nasdaq:  VZ), headquartered in New York, is a global leader in delivering broadband and other wireless and wireline communications services to consumer, business, government and wholesale customers. Verizon Wireless operates America’s most reliable wireless network, with more than 108 million retail connections nationwide. Verizon also provides converged communications, information and entertainment services over America’s most advanced fiber-optic network, and delivers integrated business solutions to customers worldwide. A Dow 30 company with more than $127 billion in 2014 revenues, Verizon employs a diverse workforce of 177,300. For more information, visit www.verizon.com/news/.

VERIZON ENTERPRISE SOLUTIONS ONLINE NEWS CENTER: News releases, blog posts, media contacts and other information are available in Verizon Enterprise Solutions’ online News Center at http://www.verizonenterprise.com/about/news. News from Verizon Enterprise Solutions is also available through an RSS feed at http://www.verizonenterprise.com/rss-options/.

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