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2018 HPA Tech Retreat® Announces Expanded Program

IMF, AI Highlighted in Connective Week 

LOS ANGELES 29 January 2018 –– Today, the HPA unveiled additions to the Tech Retreat program and events that were outlined last month in its preliminary program announcements, continuing its reputation as an incomparable opportunity to meet and engage with a world-class roster of well-known and emerging leaders in engineering, technology, creativity and business. The HPA Tech Retreat will take place at a new venue at the JW Marriott Resort, in Palm Desert, California, from the 19th to 23rd of February, 2018.

As it has for 23 years, the HPA Tech Retreat will feature an array of high-powered conference sessions (TR-X, Supersession, and the main program) as well as a curated Innovation Zone, more than 50 breakfast roundtables, and extensive networking opportunities.

Monday’s TR-X (Tech Retreat eXtra) takes an uncommon, in-depth dive into AI. Tuesday through Friday, Tech Retreat programming covers the most important topics facing the media industry. Kicking off the days on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday are a diverse array of breakfast roundtable discussions, led by key industry experts.

The Innovation Zone, featuring emerging and innovating technologies from nearly 60 companies at the vanguard of the industry, will unveil the new IMF Central, a special area of Interoperable Master Format (IMF) expert companies.  Open Tuesday through Thursday, it will also feature specialty suites for presentations of cameras, monitors and other technologies that require a darkened environment.


Monday, February 19 – HPA TR-X

2018 HPA TR-X: Everything You Thought You Knew About Artificial Intelligence in M&E and What You Didn’t Know You Didn’t Know

The engaging half day session will tackle one of the most important topics of the day: what’s AI all about and what does it really have to do with Media & Entertainment now and in the future. Featuring a keynote by Yves Bergquist (Project Director Data Analytics, Entertainment Technology Center at USC), as well as presentations from industry leaders Paul Roberts (Amazon Web Services), Logan Ketchum (Veritone), Greg Taieb (Deluxe Entertainment Services Group), Linda Smith (Facecake), editor and professor Norman Hollyn (USC), Greg Estes (NVidia), John Vickery (Zeroth), Raja Sahi (Pixelogic Media), Phil Lelyveld (ETC), Craig German (Amazon Web Services), John Motz (GrayMeta), Steve Cronan (5th Kind), Richard Welsh (Sundog Media Toolkit), Philip Hodgetts (Lumberjack Systems), Rachel Payne (Prizma), and Mark Chiolis (Mobile TV Group), TR-X is jam packed with opportunities to learn, explore and connect. TR-X is a standalone and separately ticketed session from the rest of the Tech Retreat.

Tuesday, February 20 – The Supersession

HPA Supersession: It’s Still Snowing and We’re Just Making Bigger and Better Snowmen

The Tech Retreat Supersession is designed to dig deep into crucial questions, including making sense of the many choices across many different workflows. Attendees will learn from industry experts about how we are producing content across the widest spectrum of content creation – from spots to blockbusters. Speakers announced include keynote speaker Usman Shakeel (Amazon), as well as Jerry Pierce (HPA), Joshua Rubenstein (LAPD), Jesse Korosi (SIM Digital), Annie Chang (Universal Pictures), Erik Hansen (HBO), Richard Welsh (Sundog Media Toolkit), Chuck Parker (Sohonet), Aaron Lovell (Amazon Studios), Chris Clarke (Cerberus Technology), Roy Trosh (The Mill), and David Benson (BeBop Technology).

Wednesday, February 21 – Friday, February 23

The main conference program consists of carefully curated talks, panels, and presentations that deal with the engrossing and provocative issues facing the industry in 2018. There are a number of new and relevant sessions on tap for the main program.


  • Mark Schubin’s Technology Year in Review
  • Washington Update: Jim Burger (Thompson Coburn LLP)
  • IMF Central: Howard Lukk (SMPTE), Bruce Devlin (SMPTE), Mark Harrison (Digital Production Partnership/DPP), Andy Wilson (DPP), Andy Quested (BBC), Bill Baggelaar (Sony Pictures Entertainment), Greg Geier (Sony Pictures Entertainment), Tomasz Witkowski (Fishtank Cloud), Julián Fernández-Campón (Tedial), Clyde Smith (Fox, North American Broadcasters Association)
  • Broadcasters Panel: Matthew Goldman (Ericsson), Dave Siegler (Cox Media Group & Pearl TV), Rich Friedel (Fox & ATSC), Del Parks (Sinclair Broadcast Group), and Skip Pizzi (NAB)
  • CES Review: Peter Putman (ROAM Consulting)
  • Advanced Cinema Technology Session: Pete Ludé (Mission Rock Digital), Jean-Philippe Jacquemin (Barco), Ronan Boitard (Barco), Scott Daly (Dolby Laboratories), Gary Demos (Image Essence), Tony Davis (RealD), Bill Bennett, ASC


  • HDR Flavors: Seth Hallen (Pixelogic/HPA), Don Eklund (Sony Pictures Entertainment), Pat Griffis (Dolby Laboratories), Bill Mandel (Samsung), Andy Quested (BBC)
  • Establishing Metadata Guidelines for Downstream Image Presentation Management on Consumer Displays: Michael Chambliss (ICG)
  • ACES Update: Annie Chang (Universal), Wolfgang Ruppel (RheinMain University of Applied Sciences)
  • Remote and Mobile Production Panel: Mark Chiolis (Mobile TV Group), Peter Wehner (Mobile TV Group), Scott Rothenberg (NEP Group), Wolfgang Schram (PRG/Nocturne), John Vickery (Zeroth)
  • VR and The Eclipse: Alx Klive, (360 Designs)
  • Pixar’s Approach to Localization: Eric Pearson (Pixar)
  • Automation of Versioning: Richard Welsh (Sundog Media Toolkit), Henry Gu (GIC), Cédric Lejeune (Éclair)
  • Understanding Block Chain for the Biz: Steve Wong (DXC Technology), Pete Ludé (Mission Rock Digital)
  • Reinventing Digital Content Storage and Interchange with Decentralized Ledgers and Machine Learning: Michelle Munson and Serban Simu (Eluvio)
  • The Project Budget War: Views from Both Sides and the In-Between: Andy Marken (Marken Communications), Jeffrey Stansfield (Advantage Video Systems), Cirina Catania (The Catania Group), Larry O’Connor (OWC), Aaron Semmel (Semmelboomboom)
  • The Rise of eSports: Josh Rizzo


  • Predicting Trends: Why We Get It Wrong and How to Get It Right: Mark Harrison (DPP)
  • SMPTE Update: Howard Lukk (SMPTE)
  • Detection of Modified Video: Ed Grogan (Department of Defense)
  • Immersion and the Singularity:  The Fusion of AI, Social, Advertising and Entertainment: Lucas Wilson (Supersphere)
  • Virtual Cinematography and Storytelling Engines: Ramy Katrib (Digital Film Tree), Adam Myhill (Unity Technologies)
  • Perceptual Fatigue in Film, Broadcast and VR: Thomas Lund (Genelec)
  • Where We Are Heading: Steven Lampen (Belden)
  • Post Retreat Treat: “It Talks! A very brief history of voice synthesis”: Mark Schubin

Breakfast Roundtables

Wednesday to Friday, expert led roundtables – over 50 of them – cover topics as diverse as blockchain, high speed motion control, cybercrime, AI applied to video recognition, OLED updates, and many other compelling areas. The most important meal of the day has never been so informative.

Networking Opportunities

Between cocktail receptions, breakfast roundtables, lunches, and catered breaks, the HPA Tech Retreat puts attendees, speakers and other experts together to share, discuss and debate.

The HPA Tech Retreat, a limited attendance event strictly capped at 600 guests, has sold out every year since its founding. Registration is open for TR-X and the entire Tech Retreat, and both day passes and full conference passes are available. Because both events will sell out, there is no onsite registration. Registration includes conference sessions, breakfast roundtables, Innovation Zone, some meals, and social events.

A complete 2018 HPA Tech Retreat program, with schedule and speakers’ bios, is available here. Additional sessions and speakers will be announced. (Please note the final schedule is subject to change.)

For information on event and sponsorship opportunities, visit https://hpaonline.com/. For press registration, visit the HPA Tech Retreat registration, or contact ignite strategic communications for further information.

Sponsors of the HPA Tech Retreat include Foundation Members Avid, Company 3, Deluxe, Dolby, EFILM, and Encore; Platinum Sponsors Aspera, an IBM Company, Avid, and Microsoft; Gold Sponsor Blackmagic Design; Silver Sponsor Western Digital; and Star and Event Sponsors Alt Systems, Atto Technology, Dell EMC, MicroStrategy, and Scale Logic.


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About the HPA Tech Retreat
The HPA Tech Retreat® is a gathering of the top industry engineering, technical, and creative talent, as well as strategic business leaders, focused on technology, from all aspects of digital cinema, post production, film, television, video, broadcast and related technology areas, for the exchange of information. The HPA Tech Retreat takes place in Palm Springs, California and the UK. Information about the HPA Tech Retreat is available at www.hpatechretreat.com.


About the Hollywood Professional Association
Hollywood Professional Association (HPA) serves the professional community of businesses and individuals who provide expertise, support, tools and the infrastructure for the creation and finishing of motion pictures, television, commercials, digital media and other dynamic media content. Through their partnership with the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers® (SMPTE®), the leader in the advancement of the art, science and craft of the image, sound, and metadata ecosystem, the HPA continues to extend its support of the community it represents. Information about the HPA is available at https://hpaonline.com.


About the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers® (SMPTE®)
Winner of an Oscar® and multiple Emmy® Awards, the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers® (SMPTE®) is a global leader in the advancement of the art, science, and craft of the image, sound, and metadata ecosystem. A professional membership association that is internationally recognized and accredited, SMPTE advances moving-imagery education and engineering across the communications, technology, media, and entertainment industries. For a century, SMPTE has published the SMPTE Motion Imaging Journal and developed more than 800 standards, recommended practices, and engineering guidelines. Nearly 7,000 members – motion-imaging executives, engineers, creative and technology professionals, researchers, scientists, educators, and students – who meet in Sections worldwide, sustain the Society. Through the Society’s partnership with Hollywood Professional Association (HPA®), this membership is complemented by the professional community of businesses and individuals who provide the expertise, support, tools, and infrastructure for the creation and finishing of motion pictures, television programs, commercials, digital media, and other dynamic media content. Information on joining SMPTE is available at http://www.smpte.org/join.


Media Contact:
ignite strategic communications
christine purse | kate eberle
+1 818 980 3473 | chris mobile: +1 323 806 9696
chris@ignite.bz | kate@ignite.bz

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