Monday, October 19th, 2015

6:15 PM – 8:30 PM

The Welcome Dinner, Salon II, by invitation

Hollywood & Immersive Entertainment: From Film, IMAX and 3D to Virtual Reality - From Theaters to Mobile Platforms

Dinner Speakers and Honorees:

Ted Schilowitz, Futurist and VR explorer, 20th Century FOX

Chris Defaria, President Animation, Digital Production & Visual Effects, Warner Bros.

Spencer Stephens, Chief Technology Officer, Sony Pictures Entertainment

Robert Neuman, Studio Department Leader, Stereo, Walt Disney Animation

Ethan Stearns, Studio VR Leader, Legendary Entertainment

Moderator - Steve Schklair, founding principal and CEO, 3ality & 3mersiv


 Nokia Technologies on the continued development and use of the OZO VR camera system.  Utilizing the same vision and technological skill that elevated 3ality to a new standard in native 3D systems and technology for movies including Transformers: Age of Extinction, X-Men: Days of Future Past, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, and all three Hobbit installments, Schklair is already making an impact on virtual reality’s potential to capture news, sports, and other programming that could benefit from a 360 degree viewer experience. Schklair's is responsible for shooting the first live S3D broadcasts from the NFL, the BCS Championship, sports programming for BSkyB, the Super Bowl, and the World Cup. Diving into the VR world is a natural transition for Schklair where he is noted for contributing to the Nokia-designed OZO launch by directing and producing a “Marriage Equality” test production. Schklair served as a producer and the 3D and Digital Image Producer on the groundbreaking U23D movie released in 2007 by National Geographic. He served as Executive Producer on films such as Britney Spears Live: The Femme Fatale Tour (credited), and on live concert films for Kenny Chesney Summer in 3D, The Black Eyed Peas in Paris, and Jennifer Lopez: Dance Again (uncredited in lieu of company credit). He also served as a producer for the Russian epic, Stalingrad, directed by Fedor Bondarchuk. Highly regarded by an international client list as one of the world’s leading experts in digital and live action 3D, Schklair is often credited as being one of the primary catalysts behind the resurgence of 3D in Hollywood films. Schklair contributed to Bernard Mendiburu’s 2011 book, ‘3D TV and 3D Cinema’ and has spoken at dozens of conferences including NAB, events for the PGA, and has been a keynote speaker at MIPCOM 2012 in Cannes, 3D Masters in London, Dimension-3 in Paris, and the IBC in Amsterdam. Prior to 3MERSIV, Schklair was a senior executive at Digital Domain during the production of such films as Apollo 13, The Fifth Element, Titanic, and Terminator 2:3D. He was also creative director for R/Greenberg Associates, Executive Producer of The Columbus Project for computer graphics and interactive media pioneer Robert Abel, and Co-Producer at Infinity Filmworks where he produced and photographed dozens of special venue films. In 2014, the International 3D and Advanced Imaging Society recognized Schklair and 3ality with the prestigious Century Award, which is presented to those individuals and companies who have indelibly left their mark on 3D’s first century.  Schklair is an associate member of the American Society of Cinematographers (ASC), a member of the Producer’s Guild of America (PGA), and is an award winning member of the VES.


Chris deFaria, President, Animation, Digital Production and Visual Effects, Warner Bros. Pictures: Christopher deFaria serves as President, Animation, Digital Production and Visual Effects, Warner Bros. Pictures, a post to which he was promoted in April 2013. In this role, deFaria oversees feature film animation activities and the development and production of visual effects for Warner Bros Pictures. Using cutting-edge technology, deFaria is charged with spearheading the Studio’s expanding efforts in innovative animation and hybrid filmmaking. Recently, he served as an executive producer for Alfonso Cuarón’s Gravity and the visual effects executive for Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel. Other notable projects in which deFaria played a key role include The Great Gatsby, The Dark Knight trilogy, the Harry Potter films, Sherlock Holmes and its sequel, Sherlock Holmes: Game of Shadows, 300, Happy Feet Two, Sucker Punch, Clash of the Titans, Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole, Where The Wild Things Are, Watchmen, Sweeney Todd, Corpse Bride, The Matrix trilogy, Looney Tunes: Back in Action and Cats & Dogs. An 18-year veteran of the company, deFaria joined Warner Bros. Pictures as Senior Vice President of Physical Production in 1996. When the Animation, Visual Effects and Digital Production departments merged in 2006, he was named Executive Vice President, Digital Production and Animation, Warner Bros. Pictures, where he managed animation projects and visual effects-intensive scripts, explored co-production opportunities with outside animation studios and oversaw visual effects for all features and direct-to-DVD projects. Prior to joining the Studio, deFaria produced television documentaries, movies and primetime specials in San Francisco, where he won three regional Emmys and two NAPTE Iris Awards. A member of both the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and the Writers Guild of America, deFaria is also a founding board member of FilmAid International, a non-profit organization that screens educational and informational films in refugee camps around the world. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Los Angeles.


Ted Schilowitz, Futurist and VR explorer, 20th Century FOX: Ted was founding member, first employee, and integral part of the product development team at RED Digital Cinema, that has made a significant impact on the Motion Picture Industry, with many of the worlds biggest movies now being shot with these ultra high resolution digital movie cameras.   Ted currently spends his time in 2 blended worlds;  a major Hollywood movie studio and a major technology  company in the Digital Cinema projection world.  He has a studio deal at 20th Century Fox as their “Futurist”, working directly with senior leadership at the studio on the constantly evolving art and science  of advanced motion picture creation.  He advises and creates strategy on future technology and vision of cinema for the next generation of movie entertainment.  He has a unique role at Barco, the worlds marketshare leader in Digital Cinema projection, as their “CinemaVangelist” spearheading a project that is focused on the future of the cinema experience. Ted is one of the founders and creators of the G-Tech product line of advanced hard drive storage products, that are implemented worldwide for professional Television and Multimedia content creation, and are the most recognized brand in the space. Before being part of the founding teams at RED Digital Cinema and G-Tech, Ted was on the team that developed and launched the Macintosh products desktop video division of AJA Video Systems, that created the groundbreaking Kona Cards and IO boxes.  These products are used on a massive scale worldwide for video production and post production at the highest levels, including some of the worlds biggest movies, TV shows and sporting events. Ted has presented on the future of technology and strategy for the media and entertainment industry in many regions of the USA, Europe, China, India, the Middle East, and the Far East.  He has consulted worldwide on the technical advances of ultra high resolution digital cinematography and future of advanced next gen. visual experiences for the movie, TV, interactive and gaming industries. Schilowitz has been featured in Wired, Variety, NY Times, Wall Street Journal, The Hollywood Reporter, NBC, Studio Daily, Videography, Film and Video, DV magazine, TV Technology, HD Video Pro Magazine, Digital Television Magazine, Engadget, Gizmodo, Millimeter, American Cinematographer, MacWorld, Post magazine, Popular Science, LA Times and countless other trade publications and mainstream press, discussing technology advancements in his areas of passion and exploration


Spencer Stephens, Chief Technology Officer, Sony Pictures Entertainment: As Chief Technology Officer at Sony Pictures at Sony Pictures Entertainment, Spencer Stephens oversees the tech side of the content creation and distribution for the studio, steering the implementation of the studio's digital initiatives and expediting production and post production workflows. He's responsible for the creation of new digital media workflows and systems, covering everything from cloud-based services to 3D and 4k, and helps set industry-wide digital policies by working with several technical working groups, consortiums and industry forums. As one of Sony Pictures' senior technologists, Stephens also interfaces with counterparts across Sony Corp. to further the development and use of tools for the creation, distribution and display of high-quality entertainment across platforms. Stephens brings a wealth of experience in technology and management experience to Sony Pictures. Previously, Stephens worked as a technologist for Warner Bros. where he was responsible for technology development and application across a broad range of digital content distribution and production systems. Stephens started in data communications as system engineer at the inception of the computer network industry. He has focused on the design and the innovative application of network systems for other leading entertainment companies including Disney where he worked on digital production for Walt Disney TV Animation. Stephens has a BSc (1st Class Honors) in physics from the University of Sussex, UK and an MS in computer science from the University of California, Berkeley.


Robert Neuman, the Studio Department Leader for Stereo at Walt Disney Animation Studios, is one of the industry’s leading experts in 3D

filmmaking.  Most recently, he served as stereoscopic supervisor for Disney’s 2015 Oscar® winning film, “Big Hero Six,” and played an

integral role in helping the filmmakers add dimension and excitement to that film’s amazing world. In addition to stereoscopic creative

supervision, Neuman pioneered the 3D process used for the re-releases of "Beauty and the Beast" and "The Lion King". Neuman’s work has garnered a trio of 3D Creative Arts Awards, and his achievements with Disney’s stereoscopic pipeline were honored with a

Lumiere Award for 3D Technology.  Additionally, he has been granted more than a dozen patents in the field of 3D, and he is the recipient of twelve Disney Inventor Awards for his innovations in stereoscopic filmmaking.  Neuman credits his background as a layout artist and supervisor for improving his eye for cinematography, adding to his expertise in stereoscopic filmmaking.


Ethan Stearns, Legendary Entertainment: Ethan Stearns has always been at the vanguard of technological innovations.  In his position with New Line Cinema, Ethan implemented one of the first studio wide production paperwork digital distribution systems.  Virtual production offices are now common in our industry but this was very new at the time.  Ethan continued this work when he moved to DreamWorks in 2009 by implementing IT solutions that helped the productions more efficiently share data while simultaneously allowing a way for the studio to better track and retain their digital assets.  His work in the field helped to define a variety of industry standards from digital distribution through to intellectual property security. At Legendary, Ethan¹s role evolved to include new forms of media and his

work in technology helped Legendary look into new forms of entertainment like Virtual Reality.  Coupled with his passion for interactive

entertainment, Ethan has started a new movement within Legendary to create interactive cinematic experiences for Virtual and Augmented Reality.  In 2014 Ethan produced a VR experience in close partnership with Oculus and Guillermo Del Toro around the Legendary property, ³Pacific Rim².  It¹s popularity at San Diego Comic Con generated such great interest from Samsung and Oculus that it was selected to be preloaded onto the Samsung Gear VR when the device launched. The following year Ethan worked directly with Google to produce two

experiences for launch on their Virtual Reality Platform, Cardboard. Working with Google, Ethan was able to execute a campaign that distributed 50k cardboard viewers to attendees of San Diego Comic Con.  One of these experiences, ³Skies of Azeroth², was the first piece of content publicly released for Legendary¹s new film, ³Warcraft².  The VR experience was so popular that it attracted more than three million views in its first few days on YouTube. Ethan is now one of the foremost experts in the field of Virtual Reality and is playing a pioneering role in helping Legendary continue their growth into a multi-media content creator.

Steve Schklair is a producer, cinematographer, CEO of 3ality Technica, and founder of 3MERSIV. Recognized as an international 3D expert, Schklair has expanded his reach into virtual reality. He is dedicated to advancing VR from both a creative and technology perspective through the 2015 launch of 3MERSIV—a company entirely focused on VR production and developing integrated solutions for capturing VR. 3MERSIV is currently working in partnership with