HPA Tech Retreat: 4K Playback with Colorfront On-Set Dailies (Video)

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  • Colorfront enables on-set dailies that, for example, can play back Sony F65 Raw 4K images in real-time.
  • Bruno Munger of Colorfront discusses some of the system’s benefits in this video report from the HPA Tech Retreat show floor.
  • “You save on storage, you save on time — and since it’s a dailies system, real-time is paramount,” explains Munger.
  • Colorfront enables multiple deliverables in different formats all from the original 4K files.

HPA Tech Retreat: 5th Kind Demos DAM Workflow System (Video)

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  • Steve Cronan, CEO and founder of 5th Kind (formerly OTC Productions), discusses his cloud-based and enterprise digital asset management workflow system.
  • The company started on the “Matrix” sequels in 2001 and is dedicated to solutions that manage “all the digital assets across the full production life cycle, all the way from script to screen, for everybody from the PA to the producer.”
  • Cronan emphasizes a secure centralized system that automates “all the digital workflows around the collaboration, the distribution and communication” by providing the “tools to keep everybody in synch.”
  • The 5th Kind system includes mobile interfaces for reviewing on-the-go and a series of modules for addressing different workflows (such as the footage module for managing camera reports).

HPA Tech Retreat: JVC Converts 2D to 3D with New Workstation (Video)

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  • Dave Walton of JVC Professional Products demonstrates the company’s new 2D-to-3D conversion workstation.
  • “This is a system that we’ve designed working in conjunction with Twentieth Century Fox to convert titles, movies, primarily for packaged media — high-definition — over to 3D,” he explains.
  • Walton suggests that the advantage of the JVC system has to do with the creation and editing of layers in real-time, which results in the reduction of cost for the conversion process. He explains that in many cases the number of layers can be reduced by a factor of 10 with the JVC system.
  • “The end result is very high quality 3D material from a 2D source that can be used for packaged media, and eventually we intend to migrate this technology where we can actually do a full resolution cinema release,” he says.

HPA Tech Retreat: Sony Demos F65 CineAlta Camera (Video)

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  • Keith Vidger of Sony talks about the F65 CineAlta 4K camera and the Sony partners on hand at HPA showcasing systems (ranging from dailies to color grading) that natively handle Raw files from the camera.
  • The F65, currently available, features a 20-megapixel 8K image sensor and 16-bit linear Raw file output capability.
  • According to Vidger, the camera creates Raw files, “that are just stunning, being used on lots of big features at the moment and soon to be working its way into the world of episodic television — and to that end…lots of different workflows available from the Raw side of things all the way down to 220-megabits for smaller bitrate workflows.”

HPA Tech Retreat: Nativ Cloud-Based Media Management (Video)

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  • Jon Folland, CEO of Nativ, discusses his company’s cloud-based media management platform.
  • The platform runs in a private cloud environment, is highly scalable and offers a range of functionality.
  • Features include: complete asset management in a single interface in the cloud, advanced metadata management and flexible control regarding how media management workflows can be created and run.
  • “This is a relatively advanced platform, we think, that allows customers the benefits of private cloud without compromising the level of flexibility and strength that they need from a media management platform,” explains Folland.

HPA Tech Retreat: Looking at Day One with Jerry Pierce (Video)

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  • Jerry Pierce, vice president of HPA, provides a wrap-up of the Tech Retreat’s day one. Some of the highlights include:
  • It looks like the home is heading toward higher resolution than HD.
  • How will it be delivered? One possibility is on a Blu-ray disc with different codecs.
  • We used to think that 2K was enough, but now we’re nearing 4K, 5K (capture, at least) and the possibility of 8K.
  • Fascinating new area: There seems to be an emerging shift from broadcast to mobile TV.
  • While some suspect LCDs may completely replace plasmas soon, there was some discussion regarding which technology is actually better.

HPA Tech Retreat: Dolby Demos Professional Reference Monitor (Video)

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  • From HPA, Mike Rockwell of Dolby Laboratories talks about how the company’s new professional reference monitor fits into a number of high-end workflows for digital cinema production.
  • Demonstrating different workflows with the Dolby 12-bit monitor, he emphasizes that the monitor provides the full range of what a professional camera can produce: “everything that’s in the shadows, everything that’s in the highlights… all that detail is able to be displayed by our monitor.”
  • Dolby is also demonstrating the capabilities of a color correction workflow aided by its monitor.
  • “We feel like it’s an exciting time for the future for cinema,” concludes Rockwell.

HPA Tech Retreat: Canon Introduces the New $16K C300 (Video)

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  • Tim Smith from Canon provides a quick overview to the company’s new C300 Digital Cinema camera in this video from HPA.
  • The camera features a full-size super 35 sensor and is currently shipping with the EOS mount for interchangeable lenses (the PL mount will be available March-April).
  • Smith explains that the camera is “spectacular in low light” with ISOs up to 20,000 and the battery life lasts up to three hours on a single charge with an internal battery.
  • “It’s probably the biggest thing Canon has ever done for the cinema community,” claims Smith.
  • Cost: $16,000 with monitor, handles, charging system and batteries.

2012 CES Content Preview: Entertainment Matters

Entertainment Matters at CES (EM), currently in its second year, is an International CES program created specifically for the Hollywood and entertainment community.  EM includes On the Floor, which targets relevant exhibits for content and entertainment professionals; Keynotes and Panels that address key trends, technologies, media and branding; the Red Carpet Program, an exclusive, invitation-only VIP program to CES; and Next Generation, a custom experience for tomorrow’s entertainment media leaders.  Sponsored by Variety and Ericsson, EM is a tailored connection to partnerships and innovations at the world’s largest consumer electronics tradeshow, the 2012 International CES® (January 10-13 in Las Vegas).


DTS, Technicolor, LG, Sony and ESPN 3D are just a few of the more than 2,700 leading tech companies exhibiting at CES On the Floor – from global giants to emerging startups – unveiling innovative new products and services and showcasing the collaboration between content creators and CE manufacturers.


The Red Carpet Program is an insider’s view of global technology and content, and access to potential business opportunities.  It is an invitation-only VIP program open to select executives, directors, producers and talent (contact: RedCarpet@CE.org).  Red Carpet benefits include:

  • Free access to the CES show floor
  • Access to private Red Carpet Lounge on the show floor (LVCC, North Hall)
  • Preshow and on-site service, including a dedicated hotline
  • Priority VIP passes to Keynote Addresses*
  • 20% discount on Entertainment Matters Conference Pass
  • Customized guided tours of show floor*
  • Access to exclusive VIP parties and special events*
*Space is limited.


For Hollywood’s Next Generation leaders, EM provides a custom experience designed to introduce this highly networked and influential community to the CES experience.  The program targets tomorrow’s studio chiefs, content producers, leading actors, agents and attorneys (contact: Hollywood@CE.org).  Next Generation benefits include:


  • Free access to the CES show floor
  • Curated/guided tour of the show floor*
  • Free access to select Entertainment Matters Conference Sessions
  • 20% discount on full Entertainment Matters Conference Pass
  • Access to invite-only Thursday evening event
* Space is limited.


Entertainment Matters also includes the International Academy of Web Television’s inaugural IAWTV Awards; the Technology & Engineering Emmy® Awards; various TechZones such as 3D@Home, Access on the Go, iLounge Pavilion and Mobile DTV; the Official Entertainment Matters Party at LAVO; and Conference Tracks that should be of particular interest to entertainment professionals, such as Tweet House Presents: Social Media Success Stories, The Reinvention of an Industry: Entertainment Everywhere, Games Summit at CES and Digital Hollywood.


Additionally, CES provides relevant news updates twice a week with the Entertainment Matters Digital Content SmartBrief (EM SmartBrief), covering news essential to the digital entertainment industry (to subscribe: www.smartbrief.com/ceadigital).


Click here to register for Entertainment Matters.  Use priority code EM13 and receive free registration and a 20% discount on the Entertainment Matters Conference Pass.  (You must be a working professional in the content and entertainment industry.)

Panel Notes from FoE 5: The Futures of Serialized Storytelling

The following are some notable comments from a panel at last week’s Futures of Entertainment conference at MIT.

Panel: “The Futures of Serialized Storytelling”

  • Science fiction is perfect for serialized storytelling because of a large story world that can generate.
  • Today’s distractions are forcing TV to focus on its best skill, large live events.
  • Serialized drama is really moving to time-shifted. About 50-60 percent of a drama (in theUK) is moving to time-shifted viewing.
  • The large challenge for storytellers is how to deal with asynchronous drama. Do writers and show runners still use mechanisms such as cliffhangers, when a large amount of viewing happens 6-12 months after the show?
  • Three types of audiences: skimmers, dippers and divers. Skimmers watch the show but offer no other engagement. Dippers will engage beyond the TV, and watch clips and other content online. And divers are the hardcore fans that engage with each other and all the content you put out.
  • You spend the most time and energy to produce content for divers. Even though divers are a small slice of the audience, they are the most active. They are the core of your “word of mouth campaign.”
  • TV producers are out of touch, they have been too focused on ratings. They have to get back into the crowd. They have to rebuild their skills of “listen and response.”
  • For the past five years dramas have been produced in a bubble, driven by executives and ratings. Or copying formulas that may have worked in the past. Very little has happened to create new stories.
  • It’s important to pace your engagement with the audience. It’s not always about putting out loads of content up front. You must fold in content for the hardcore fans but not alienate the regular fans.
  • The more we move into a digital world, the more important the physical tangible experience becomes. It can be a great tool to engage with audiences. For example, “Game of Thrones” food trucks. But on the flip-side, distribution is very difficult.
  • Twitter (social media) serves to amplify the liveliness of TV.
  • Dramas are not built for Twitter during the show; we see much more Twitter activity after the show.
  • “The X-Factor” seems to be designed for half of your attention. It allows for audiences to tweet during the show.
  • In social media, we know that the audience members aren’t directing their comments to the show, they are talking to their friends.
  • We’re going back 150-200 years ago, during the age of Shakespeare, when a story was told in front of an audience that reacted and talked and commented openly.
  • The TV or the movie screen should be the primary source of storytelling. The reason being, those sources will build the most attention from audiences.
  • The primary source has to be the best place that can cut into the audience’s attention. With time, that may shift away from the TV screen.

Laurie Baird (Georgia Tech)

Matt Locke (Storythings, UK)
Steve Coulson (Campfire)
Lynn Liccardo (Soap opera critic)
Denise Mann (University of California-Los Angeles)

Panel Notes from FoE 5: At What Cost? Privacy Issues in a Digital World

The following are some notable comments from a panel at last week’s Futures of Entertainment conference at MIT.

Panel: “At What Cost? The Privacy Issues that Must Be Considered in a Digital World”

  • If individuals release personal information to the world, they have to distinguish when they are really losing their privacy and when they are legitimately sharing information.
  • Just because we are sharing information in different patterns today, that doesn’t mean that we have to think of privacy as a whole any differently.
  • Everyone needs to know and be aware of what each service provider’s positions are regarding privacy.
  • There should be a push to track and openly comment on user privacy policies by companies.
  • There is no question that personalization requires giving one’s information. But this is only because we have not been creative enough in developing a solution that doesn’t require information sharing. Not enough thought has gone into having personalization and privacy live side by side without compromise.
  • Here are a few examples from outside the entertainment space that have been able to personalize a user experience without compromising their privacy: Using GPS information for vehicles on the road, traffic patterns can be generated. Companies extract information from each vehicle, and anonymise the information. By using the information in aggregate each driver can receive a personalized traffic report.
  • Adnostic is a system that provides targeted ads without tracking. It does the ad recommendations by pushing all the tracking to the client side, so that the centralized 3rd party service never knows what you are doing.

Jonathan Zittrain (Harvard University)
Helen Nissenbaum (New York University)

Panel Notes from FoE 5: Crowdsourcing for Producing Media Content

The following are some notable comments from a panel at this week’s Futures of Entertainment conference at MIT.

Panel: “Creating with the Crowd: Crowdsourcing for Funding, Producing and Circulating Media Content”

  • In the pre-production phase, to start a crowd going, you should have fans help you create simple and small ideas. The simple interactions will slowly draw people into the idea. Once they start participating more, then you can move to give them harder tasks — the hardest task/request being funding.
  • Having a community financially invested in a film not only produces funds, but can leverage the community’s time and energy after the film has been released to promote.
  • One of the keys to successful crowdsourced projects is making sure that if you fail, you need to be able to fail fast.
  • When it comes to crowdsourcing, you must find the balance between what you’re asking your crowd to do and what you’re giving them.
  • The success of crowdsourcing demands transparency. There should be a mechanism to let the crowd know how their input has been used. The sense of participation feeds the crowd to continue to participate.
  • Must provide a simple platform for crowds to engage and use.
  • In crowdsourcing there needs to be a person that ultimately decides what goes in to the content. Crowdsourcing isn’t necessarily a democracy, there needs to be a benevolent dictator/editor.
  • Crowdsourcing may become a fad if there are too many projects that are too broad. The more Kickstarter projects there are, for example, the harder it is to support them all. People will ultimately select projects that they are intensely interested in.
  • Who’s the crowd? When the term “crowd” is used, it’s really just an excuse because you don’t know the audience/group’s identity.
  • Right now a vast majority of projects that use the crowd, use it to build funds, or gather ideas. There are very few examples of crowds changing media from the creative aspect.

Mirko Schäfer (Utrecht University, The Netherlands)
Bruno Natal (Queremos, Brazil)
Timo Vuorensola (Wreckamovie, Finland)
Caitlin Boyle (Film Sprout)

Panel Notes from FoE 5: Spreadable Media in a Networked Society

Here are some key remarks from a panel at this week’s Futures of Entertainment conference at MIT.

Panel: “Spreadable Media: Creating Value and Meaning in a Networked Society”

  • Letting unauthorized content circulate and studying how it’s used and consumed is a great opportunity that no one seems to be taking advantage of.
  • Kickstarter crowdsources funding. The key is that the audience buys into the idea of a film financially. But crowdsourcing doesn’t have to stop there; it could lead to crowdsourcing of casting, SFX, etc… increasing the attachment the public has with a project.
  • A shift from the term viral to spreadable. Viral gives the content a feel of “special,” “hard to do” or “a one-off,” but spreadable allows people to think of producing content that people will want to share and consume.
  • If you start to “pay” the fan for their “free labor” of connecting with your brand, the relationship shifts and is no longer a legitimate serendipitous fan connection.
  • The impression model (number of views) is no longer valid. There is a growing trend to say, “But I can find a few people that are influencers.” However, picking a small group of people to communicate with can be shortsighted. Those small groups may be vocal, but may not know what the masses truly like or want.
  • Massive organizations are set up to hear, very slow to response. Massive organizations aren’t set up for listening. Listening is a very human response; you can’t take the humanity out of communication.
  • Companies need to start thinking about taking a much more service-based attitude. Take for example Dominos: “Our pizza was bad; what can we do to make it better?”
  • Companies are crisis-based, companies must be able to listen to audiences. Media producers have to listen to their audience before a crisis hits.
  • But we have to understand that too much media circulating outside of context can lead to dilution or can be used against the media creator.

Henry Jenkins (University of Southern California)
Sam Ford (Peppercom Strategic Communications)
Joshua Green (Undercurrent)

Veokami Offers New Platform for Watching Concert Videos Online

  • New platform from San Francisco-based Veokami aggregates user generated videos of concerts.
  • Veokami crawls YouTube and automatically puts together a playlist of videos from a single concert.
  • Videos are then synchronized with each other to offer Veokami users the ability to switch between the different camera views that were found on YouTube, without interrupting the flow of the music. Clips can also be arranged based on audio and video quality.
  • According to GigaOM, “the goal is to extend its platform so that artists, promoters and — most importantly — fans will be able to build these pages themselves. That could end up being a very powerful promotional tool for artists as they look to show listeners what it’s like to be at one of their shows.”
  • The company’s site also suggests the tool could be useful for organizing videos from political events and conferences.