2017 VES Summit2019-12-05T10:57:57-08:00

Project Description

INSPIRING CHANGE: Building on 20 Years of VES Innovation

We learn from luminaries and trailblazers: Technical wizards. Enlightened storytellers. Fearless problem-solvers. VR pioneers. Industry thought-leaders. VFX Visionaries.

We revel in the talent, creative genius, business acumen and passion that bring us remarkable imagery and unforgettable stories.

We demo new technology. We talk drones, virtual reality, robots, games storytelling, immersive experiences and the changing face of filmed entertainment. We honor the past, engage in the present and forge new paths that push the boundaries of what’s possible.

October 28, 2017 – Sofitel Hotel – Beverly Hills, CA

Video Gallery

2017 VES Summit Videos (6 videos)
(Available to VES Members Only: Log In Required)

Photo Gallery

Keynote Speakers

Syd Mead
Visual Futurist and Conceptual Artist
Syd Mead is an acclaimed visual futurist and conceptual artist whose storied career spans almost six decades.  He was recognized by the Visual Effects Society’s Board of Directors as the recipient of its Visionary Award at the 14th Annual VES Awards in 2016, honored for his unique ability to create unforgettable images and advance storytelling through his futuristic design aesthetic. Mead attributes success in an astonishing range of creative activities to the premise that imagination and the idea, supersedes technique. (read more)
Ava DuVernay
Nominated for the Academy Award and eight Emmy Awards, winner of the BAFTA for Best Documentary and The Peabody Award, Ava DuVernay’s 13th is one of the most critically-acclaimed films of 2016. In 2015, DuVernay directed the historical drama Selma, which garnered four Golden Globe nominations and two Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture. Her current directorial work includes the award-winning dramatic television series Queen Sugar; and the upcoming Disney feature film A Wrinkle in Time. (read more)

Roundtable Discussions

The Future of Virtual Production
Moderator: Vince Baertsoen — Group CG Director, The Mill

Group VR: A Multi-Modal Approach
Moderator: D’nardo Colucci — President and Co-Founder of The Elumenati, LLC

Cloud Based Computing/Workflows: What’s the Latest
Moderator: Kevin Baillie — Conductor Technologies and Atomic Fiction

Beautiful and Believable Cities for Film, TV, and Gaming
Moderator: Dominik Tarolli — Esri, Director, Global Business Development 3D Geodesign

Digital Humans: Bridging the Uncanny Valley
Moderator: Darren Hendler — Director Digital Human Group, Digital Domain

Where Does A.I. Fit in the Media & Entertainment Pipeline?
Moderator: Vincent Brisebois — Senior Technical Marketing Manager at NVIDIA

The “No Limits” World of Visual Effects in Television
Moderator: David Altenau — FuseFX CEO

High-end Visual Effects for Animation
Moderator: John Mariella — Senior Production Consultant – SideFX

Mixing Practical and Digital FX
Moderator: Todd Masters — President/Founder/Chief Monster Maker – MASTERSFX

Producing VFX in Korea and China: The Process & Challenges
Moderator: Karin Joy — VFX Producer

VFX Supervision: The Challenges / Passing along Hard-Won Solutions
Moderator: Scott Farrar, ASC — Visual Effects Supervisor / Second Unit Director – ILM

So You Have a Screenplay: What Do You Do Next?
Moderator: Christopher Lockhart — Story Editor at WME

Game Engines: The Future of Real Time Rendering & Computer Graphics
Moderator: Marc Petit — General Manager, Unreal Enterprise (Epic Games)

Featured Speakers

The Age of Imagination

Evan Atherton – Sr. Research Engineer, Office of the CTO – Autodesk

Evan received his Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley, and has been with Autodesk ever since. He currently serves as a Senior Research Engineer for the Office of the CTO, tasked with exploring five to one hundred years into the future to identify technologies, trends, and stories that may impact the way things will be designed and made. Evan’s current work occurs at the intersection of advanced robotics, digital fabrication, and storytelling. (read more)

Evolution in Entertainment: VR, Cinema, and Beyond

Jason Brenek – President, IMAX Home Entertainment

Jason Brenek joined IMAX Corporation in February 2015 as President, IMAX Home Entertainment where he oversees a series of global initiatives designed collectively to translate elements of The IMAX Experience® to the home setting, including the IMAX Private Theatres, an over-the-top movie service for delivering IMAX-enhanced Hollywood films into homes, and IMAX technology licensing into premium consumer electronics. He also oversees virtual reality content acquisitions and curation for the new IMAX location-based VR centers. (read more)

Creating for Virtual, Augmented & Mixed Realities

Nonny de la Peña – Founder / CEO, Emblematic Group

Nonny de la Peña is the founder and CEO of Emblematic Group, a leader in creating immersive virtual, mixed and augmented reality. One of the most influential pioneers in VR, Nonny created walk around virtual reality with the first-ever VR documentary Hunger in Los Angeles at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. (read more)

Will the Future Look More Like Star Trek or Harry Potter?

Gavin Miller – Head of Adobe Research & VP, Creative Intelligence Lab

Dr. Gavin Miller is the Head of Adobe Research and the Vice President of the Creative Intelligence Lab. As the Vice President of the Creative Intelligence Lab, Dr. Gavin Miller aims to create a world-class research organization by attracting and retaining some of the best talent breaking grounds on innovative research across the creative fields. The Creative Intelligence Lab’s research is focused on computer graphics, computer vision, imaging, media intelligence and NLP, as well as explorations of new creativity media, such as VR, AR, AI and robots, to invent the creative landscape of tomorrow. The Creative Intelligence Lab publishes novel technical papers at major technical conferences, and contributes a significant number of features to Photoshop and other desktop and mobile creative products produced by Adobe. (read more)

When Hackers Attack: How Can Hollywood Fight Back?

Hemanshu (Hemu) Nigam – CEO, SSP Blue

Hemanshu “Hemu” Nigam has worked inside the largest prosecuting agencies, software companies, media and entertainment giants, and most influential trade associations in the world. Hemu served as the Chief Security Officer (CSO) of News Corporation and Fox Interactive Media’s digital properties, as CSO of MySpace, and as a security executive in Microsoft. He was also the Vice President of Worldwide Internet Enforcement at the Motion Picture Association of America. He began his career as Los Angeles County prosecutor specializing in sex crimes and child abuse before serving as a federal prosecutor against online crimes against children and computer crimes in the US DOJ. (read more)

Transforming Cinema Beyond 24 fps

Douglas Trumbull, VES – Visionary Filmmaker, Innovator and Entrepreneur

Visionary filmmaker, innovator and entrepreneur, Douglas Trumbull has enjoyed a long and prestigious technological and creative career in filmmaking and entertainment technologies. Following his breakthrough pioneering work as one of four photographic effects supervisors on 2001: A Space Odyssey, his name rapidly became synonymous with some of the greatest effects work of its era on titles such as The Andromeda Strain, Close Encounters Of the Third Kind, Star Trek: The Motion Picture, and Blade Runner. (read more)

2017 VES Founders, Fellows & Hall of Fame Celebration

2017 VES Founders Award

The VES Founders Award is awarded to any individual member of the VES who has significantly contributed to the success of the VES.

Toni Pace Carstensen – VFX Producer

This year, the VES Board of Directors is privileged to bestow the Founders Award upon Toni Pace Carstensen for her sustained contributions to the art, science or business of visual effects and meritorious service to the Society. Carstensen has a passion for new worlds—one that has taken her from the Amazon to Pandora. Her feature work as VFX producer/digital production manager includes Avatar, Minority Report and Fantasia 2000. For theme parks she contributed to Epcot’s Mission: Space and Star Trek Voyager: Borg Encounter 4D. While Executive Producer at View Studio Carstensen produced TV FX work for The X-Files and Outer Limits and then remastered VFX for the original Star Trek series HD release at CBS Digital. Venturing out on her own, Carstensen started CyberGraphix, one of the first Mac-based motion graphics. She is the recipient of a Broadcast Design Gold Award for Francis Ford Coppola’s White Dwarf, a VES Award nomination for Best Supporting Visual FX – Broadcast for Pushing Daisies and three Emmy Award nominations for her early work as a radio and television news producer. (read more)

2017 VES Fellows

The title of VES Fellow signifies that the individual is recognized for earning an outstanding reputation through sustained contributions to the art, science or business of visual effects, as well as through meritorious service to the Society and the entertainment industry at large.

2017 VES Lifetime Membership

Lifetime Memberships are awarded for meritorious service to the Society, the industry and for furthering the interests and values of visual effects artists around the world.

2017 VES Honorary Membership

Awarded for exemplary contributions to the entertainment industry at large, and for furthering the interests and values of visual effects practitioners around the world.