• Wednesday, Apr. 22, 2020
OpenDrives introduces in-place private cloud model for the remote workforce

OpenDrives, the company behind digital media’s intelligent and trusted network-attached-storage (NAS) solution, is now delivering OpenDrives Anywhere, an in-place private cloud model that enables customers with OpenDrives to work on the same project from multiple locations, without compromises in performance. 

With COVID-19 corporate shut downs and a massive shift to remote or furloughed workforce, the postproduction industry and its teams have been one of the hardest hit. Teams are scrambling for solutions with a limited remote workforce that allows postproduction projects to continue while maintaining social distance. 

Most businesses have already built out costly physical infrastructures to meet the intense demands of content pipelines, but haven’t worked through the difficult task of implementing and supporting remote workflows. Project leads are now scrambling for “remote solutions”--looking to more traditional “Take Out” and Cloud” models--which can be prohibitive in performance, collaboration, cost-efficiency and setup. 

OpenDrives has developed a third option--OpenDrives Anywhere--that provides remote workers with the capabilities and performance necessary to carry out workflows efficiently. Every OpenDrives shared storage solution can deliver this capability and remote workflow as is for existing customers as their own in-place private cloud. 

“Opendrives was founded by veteran Hollywood film editors, colorists, data engineers to studio heads, and everything in-between. This gives us a unique understanding of the pain points teams are facing and the critical demand for a ‘new normal’ to keep our industry alive now and into the future,”  said Sean Lee, chief product and strategy officer at OpenDrives. “We’ve done extensive testing to ensure OpenDrives Anywhere meets the same level of performance customers deserve and need...right here, right now.”

OpenDrives views performance holistically. An editor needs to be able to sit down at a workstation, tap the spacebar, have video play instantaneously, scrub flawlessly, and render at top speeds without worrying about all the IT logistics. With existing office infrastructure, teams already have an in-place private cloud and can extend its power to remote professionals. No reinvestment in storage is needed--OpenDrives supports this infrastructure with the performance teams expect and need.

Nothing changes from a workflow perspective except physical proximity. With simple adjustments, remote control of existing enterprise workstations can be extended via a secure connection. HP’s ZCentral Remote Boost (formerly RGS) software will facilitate remote access over secure connection to workstations, or Teradici can provide both dedicated external hardware and software solutions for this purpose, giving teams the ability to support collaborative workflows at very low cost. OpenDrives can also get teams quickly set up in under two hours on a corporate VPN and under 24 hours without.

OpenDrives Anywhere is available to existing and new customers.

  • Wednesday, Apr. 22, 2020
Facebook invests in India telecom giant Jio for e-commerce
In this Aug. 12, 2019 file photo, chairman of Reliance Industries Limited Mukesh Ambani (r) with wife Neeta Ambani arrives for 42nd Annual General Meeting of Reliance Industries Limited in Mumbai, India. Facebook says it plans to invest $5.7 billion in India’s telecom giant Reliance Jio. The investment will give Facebook a 9.99% stake in Jio Platforms, the digital technologies and app developing division of Reliance Industries. Ambani, Reliance’s head and India’s richest man, said that he is “humbled” to have Facebook as a long-term partner, and that the investment will help propel India’s digital push forward. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade, File)

Facebook says it plans to invest $5.7 billion in India's telecom giant Reliance Jio.

The investment will give Facebook a 9.99% stake in Jio Platforms, the digital technologies and app developing division of Reliance Industries. Reliance Jio has the highest number of customers in the country, and plans to roll out an e-commerce business using WhatsApp. 

"India is a special country for Facebook," Ajit Mohan, Facebook's India head, wrote in an online post highlighting India's digital transformation as one of the main reasons for the investment.

India is one of the world's fastest growing internet markets, with the number of users forecast to grow to 907 million by 2023, according to a report by Cisco issued in February.

The number of new internet users soared after Reliance Industries launched Jio in 2016, offering cheap smartphones and even cheaper data prices. Jio now has more than 388 million cellphone and data services subscribers.

Mukesh Ambani, Reliance's head and India's richest man, said that he is "humbled" to have Facebook as a long-term partner, and that the investment will help propel India's digital push forward.

"The synergy between Jio and Facebook will help realize Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi's 'Digital India' Mission," he said, referring to a government program to make life and business more efficient in the country.

Facebook and its instant messaging platform WhatsApp are popular in India, which with its 1.3 billion people has the most Facebook users in the world. China, with a population of 1.4 billion, mostly blocks access to Facebook and other non-Chinese social media.

Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook's CEO, said he hopes to give India's 60 million small businesses the digital tools they need to grow.

"With communities around the world in lockdown, many of these entrepreneurs need digital tools they can rely on to find and communicate with customers and grow their businesses," he wrote in a Facebook post.

In February, WhatsApp also got the green light to roll out its digital payments platform – WhatsApp Pay – in India, after two years of trying. 

The approval came after the Reserve Bank of India and National Payments Corporation of India gave the company a nod to launch the payment platform in a phased manner. 

  • Thursday, Apr. 16, 2020
Autodesk unveils Flame 2021
Flame 2021

Autodesk has unveiled Flame® 2021, introducing new features aimed at innovating and accelerating creative workflows for VFX, color grading, look development, and editorial finishing. Flame 2021 increases workflow flexibility for artists, expands A.I. capabilities with new machine learning-powered human face segmentation, and simplifies finishing for streaming services with new functionality for Dolby Vision HDR authoring and display. By popular demand, the release also adds a new GPU-accelerated Physical Defocus effect as well as finishing enhancements to make it easier to adjust looks across many shots, share updates with clients, and create beautiful work, faster.

“Flame allows artists to create at the speed of thought--whether iterating quickly for client reviews, adding finishing touches to shots, or creating beautiful content that meets modern streaming standards,” said Will Harris, Flame Family product line manager. “This latest release  continues to build on powerful VFX and finishing workflows in Flame with new features that support the latest HDR standards and integrate even more uses of A.I. to accelerate the creative process.”

Useful for compositing, color grading, and cosmetic beauty work, the A.I.-based face segmentation tool automates all tracking and identifies and isolates facial features, including nose, eyes, mouth, laugh lines, and cheekbones, for further manipulation. Face matching algorithms are also capable of specialized tasks, including specific mole or scar isolation, through custom layout workflows. This builds upon Flame’s powerful A.I. feature set introduced in April 2019, with built-in machine learning analysis algorithms to isolate and modify common objects in moving footage, dramatically accelerating VFX and compositing workflows.

To meet increasing demand for HDR content mastering driven by OTT streaming services, Flame 2021 introduces a powerful new Dolby Vision HDR authoring and display workflow. This enables Flame to import, author, display, and export Dolby Vision HDR shot-by-shot animatable metadata, streamlining creation and delivery of the most vibrant, vivid, high dynamic range imagery required by leading OTT streaming services. The update also expands collaboration with Autodesk Lustre and other Dolby certified color grading tools through enabling XML metadata import/export.

New Flame Family 2021 features include:

  • Machine Learning Human Face Segmentation: A new semantic keyer introduces the ability to isolate and extract alpha mattes for skin, eyes, lips, nose, and additional facial features via A.I. and machine learning with no manual tracking required.
  • Dolby Vision HDR Authoring and Display Workflow: New HDR Dolby Vision implementation enables XML metadata import/export for collaborative workflows; adds Dolby analysis trim and target display viewing within Flame; and introduces eCMU, iCMU and HDMI metadata tunneling for viewing HDR content via SDR monitors and Dolby enabled TVs. Additionally, Flame’s multilayer edit timeline now includes a HDR track to keep Dolby Vision metadata in sync, make last-minute edit changes, finalize transitions, and integrate graphics.
  • Physical Defocus: A new GPU-accelerated Defocus Effect makes it easier to add depth of field to shots and can be used in Batch as a standalone Matchbox node or in Image Selective in combination with a generated AOV Depth map. Choose between Physical and Action Camera focus models or create custom models by adjusting attributes. Lens artifacting and radial, chromatic aberration can be customized to achieve the level and quality of out-of-focus blur desired, Depth Slices can be increased and blended for more granularity of focus, and highlights can be bloomed using a selection of Bokeh attributes and lens noise models.
  • Save and Recall Color Grading and VFX: Quickly save and recall color grading and VFX work in the new Explorer, a dedicated “grade bin” and reference comparison area to support artist workflows.
  • Viewing Area: A new video preview mode shares artist viewports, including storyboard, manager, and schematic, to SDI or HDMI preview monitors. In broadcast mode, Gmasks can now be observed in the view area during editing along with any other tools you directly manipulate.
  • GMask Pre-Made Shapes: New GMask pre-made shapes with softness are available for colorists, compositors, and finishing VFX artists in the image and action nodes.

Flame®, Flare™ and Flame® Assist 2021 are available at no additional cost to Flame Family 2020 subscribers.

  • Wednesday, Apr. 15, 2020
Pair of Berlin Film Fest winners finished with Baselight
A scene from "There is No Evil."

At the 70th Berlinale, the 2020 Berlin Film Festival, the Golden Bear was won by There is No Evil, directed by Mohammed Rasoulof; the Silver Bear special prize went to Delete History, directed by Benoît Delépine and Gustave Kerven. Both movies depended on detailed grading and finishing on Baselight.

The director of There is No Evil, Mohammed Rasoulof, is currently unable to leave Iran, which resulted in the film being shot in episodes and with strict authorization for each one. It also posed a challenge during finishing for Jochen Hinrichs-Stöldt, sr. colorist at Optical Art in Hamburg and Berlin, as Rasoulof could not join the finishing sessions. This meant it fell to the DP to oversee the final look.

An intensely personal look at moral strength through the lens of Iran’s death penalty, the project is a suite of four standalone films that approach the subject from different directions. 

“The first episode starts with a natural look but ends in a shocking climax, which we amplified with the grade,” said Hinrichs-Stöldt. “The second starts in despair but ends happily, and we supported this with a color journey from cold to warmer colors. These warmer tones started the third episode, with the fourth concentrating on the desolation of the characters underlined by desert colors.”

The acceptance of the movie for the Berlinale competition meant the time schedule was very tight, and the grade was finished in just 11 days.

“I needed almost all of the tools provided by Baselight, with particular use of Base Grade and Film Grade, together with shapes, keys and mattes,” explained Hinrichs-Stöldt. “There were a lot of composite grades and some very long takes with a huge amount of dynamic changes, so the layer blending in Baselight was essential to ensure consistency. The strip naming was very handy too.”

The film also had a large amount of VFX work to integrate. Hinrichs-Stöldt explained: “Most of the visual effects were made in-house though some were delivered from Iran, so we introduced an EXR workflow for the VFX. We also made the decision to fix some minor problems--like rattling doors or microphones protruding into the frame--within the session.”

Hinrichs-Stöldt began his career as a photographer, also working as a cinematographer, editor and producer before moving into color grading. He has worked on the Baselight system now for 12 years and finished over 200 national and international movies, so he understands the pressures involved on a project such as this one.

“Thanks to the clear vision of the crew at the grading session, we were able to complete the task within the available time,” concluded Hinrichs-Stöldt. “And the movie was a joy to grade.”

Delete History
In a lighter mood, Delete History (Effacer l’Historique in the original French) is a comedy drama in which three social media victims declare war on the tech giants. That simple premise is the foundation for an audacious and daring exploration of the absurdity of our social media-obsessed world. Directors Delépine and Kerven took the project to Color in Paris for finishing.

“The directors had the desire to return to film to find a more raw image,” said colorist Julien Bodart. “We did tests in 35mm and 16mm, and they found the rendering of the 35mm too close to actual digital camera: but the 16mm corresponded perfectly to their desire for analog granularity.

“This is the third movie I have graded for Benoît and Gustave,” he continued. “We always work with the cinematographer on the tests to set the initial ideas, then at the time of the final grade we look at the consistency of our choices, see what works and where we need to do better. FilmLight’s color management is a great foundation: the Base Grade tool with its different pivot points and flare brought me a lot on this project.”

Wolfgang Lempp, CEO of FilmLight said, “In their very different ways, both these award winners are intensely personal movies. Directors with a clear idea of the mood they want to create are intuitively drawn towards tools that allow them to be creative without being bogged down in technicalities. It is this creative freedom we have striven for in Baselight, and our congratulations go to everyone behind There is No Evil and Delete History.”

Berlinale is held annually in Berlin, Germany and this year’s edition took place from February 20-March 1.

  • Tuesday, Apr. 7, 2020
Toby Oliver lenses "Blumhouse's Fantasy Island" with Pocket Cinema Camera 4Ks
Lucy Hale (from left), Austin Stowell and Michael Peña in Columbia Pictures’ “Blumhouse’s Fantasy Island” (photo by Christopher Moss/Sony Pictures Entertainment).
FREMONT, Calif. -- 

Blackmagic Design has announced that DP Toby Oliver, ACS used two Pocket Cinema Camera 4Ks to shoot the suspense/thriller Blumhouse’s Fantasy Island (Columbia Pictures). Sr. colorist Alastor Arnold of FotoKem then used DaVinci Resolve Studio to grade the film.

In Blumhouse’s Fantasy Island, the enigmatic Mr. Roarke makes the secret dreams of his lucky guests come true at a luxurious but remote tropical resort. But when the fantasies turn into nightmares, the guests have to solve the island’s mystery in order to escape with their lives.

From the producers of Get Out and Truth or Dare, Blumhouse’s Fantasy Island is directed by Jeff Wadlow, written by Wadlow, Chris Roach and Jillian Jacobs, and is produced by Jason Blum, Marc Toberoff and Wadlow.
Oliver used the Pocket Cinema Camera 4Ks to capture wide angle shots throughout production and as action cameras during the film’s intense fight scenes.

“A lot goes into choreographing a big action scene, from special effects to stunts to wardrobe, so you really need to make sure you capture as much as possible during a take to avoid having to reset. The more cameras you can fit in the better,” said Oliver. “Due to the Pocket Cinema Camera 4Ks’ small form factor, we could easily position them within an action shot to capture unique angles while not having them appear in the other cameras’ coverage, which really helped us make the most of each take.”

The cameras’ internal recording capabilities were crucial for Oliver, since he could keep their footprint small and easily tuck them into tight spots to capture the action. “In one scene, there’s a big battle featuring a dozen or so actors and gunfire. A mercenary falls into a pool during the combat, so we positioned a Pocket Cinema Camera 4K below him in the water to capture a unique angle of his plunge. During a later scene, one of the actors falls during a skirmish, so we positioned a Pocket Cinema Camera 4K under a table for a different vantage point,” Oliver explained.

“By leveraging the cameras’ size and ability to record internally, we were able to get the shots we needed. Moreover, their dynamic range and ability to shoot high frame rates allowed us to easily match our main cameras’ footage so everything intercuts seamlessly in post,” concluded Oliver. “Within a limited budget, we needed to have reliable, affordable, all in one cameras that we could use to cover more ground and expand our reach, and the Pocket Cinema Camera 4Ks delivered just that.”

FotoKem’s Arnold worked with Oliver and director Wadlow to develop four distinct looks for the film, with each guest’s fantasy having its own tone that matches their journey.

“Working on a tight deadline to create the distinct looks in the film was equally challenging and rewarding. Grading in DaVinci Resolve Studio made experimentation and auditioning different color concepts with Toby and Jeff effortlessly fun,” added Arnold.

  • Wednesday, Apr. 1, 2020
Andy Shipsides named president of ARRI Rental North America Camera
Andy Shipsides

Andy Shipsides will assume the presidency of ARRI Rental North America Camera on May 1, 2020. Peter Crithary will transition from president of ARRI Rental, North America to lead the marketing function for ARRI Inc. in the newly created role of VP of marketing and market development for the Americas.

Shipsides will work alongside Carly Barber, the president of ARRI Rental US Lighting, and will be responsible for overseeing camera rental operations in North America. Based out of ARRI Rental’s headquarters in Secaucus, Shipsides will be responsible for developing new opportunities, fostering strong relationships within the creative community and expanding ARRI Rental’s line of exclusive technologies. Shipsides said, “The North American market offers a lot of opportunities, and we are well-positioned to grow our business with unique technology offerings and a people-driven service philosophy.”

Shipsides brings to his new role over 13 years of production technology experience. Before joining ARRI Rental in September 2019 as VP of technology, Shipsides served as the chief technology officer at AbelCine, where he ran the company’s Los Angeles operation for seven years. During his time at AbelCine, he developed their training and education program, built their technical outreach team, and substantially grew their Los Angeles rental and sales presence.

“With a deep background in sales and rental Andy brings the right blend of field experience and new ideas to reinforce ARRI Rental’s position in North America,” said ARRI executive board member Markus Zeiler who added, “I’d like to thank Peter Crithary for his leadership and tremendous effort over the last 16 months and welcome him in his new role.

In his newly created role, Crithary will lead the North and South American marketing teams as well as oversee key, global initiatives.

Crithary joined ARRI Rental in December 2018, where he made immediate contributions to the successful restructuring of the North American business. Before joining ARRI Rental, Crithary gained extensive experience in the broadcast and film industry, including over ten years with RTL Television, one of Germany’s leading media companies, where he was responsible for broadcast news, magazine, and event production. Additionally, Crithary has also held key roles with Sony Electronics, including broadcast solutions development, marketing and market development of several motion picture cameras, including the VENICE platform. He began his career as a cameraman in Australia and continued in the US, working in motion pictures, television, production, and postproduction. Crithary will assume his new role on May 1, 2020.

  • Wednesday, Apr. 1, 2020
Kazuto Ogawa assumes role as president and CEO of Canon U.S.A.
Kazuto Ogawa

Kazuto Ogawa has been appointed president and CEO of Canon U.S.A. Inc. Ogawa has almost 40 years of experience with Canon since beginning his career with Canon Inc. in 1981. From 1995-2005, he held positions with Canon Singapore, Canon Hong Kong and Canon China before returning to Canon Singapore as president and CEO. In 2008, Ogawa was named president and CEO of Canon Canada. He became an executive officer of Canon Inc. in 2011 and was appointed executive vice president of Canon China in 2014. He was elected as a managing executive officer of Canon Inc. in 2016.

“It is a great honor to take on this role as the new president and chief executive officer of Canon U.S.A., Inc., especially during a time of uncertainty when COVID-19 is impacting the global marketplace,” said Ogawa. “In this pivotal moment, our employees, customers, channel partners and other stakeholders remain our top priority and we all need to work together to navigate through this challenging time.”

Ogawa’s new role as president and CEO will be complemented with other senior executive appointments at Canon U.S.A. Inc., on which he remarked: “I’m pleased to acknowledge the well-deserved promotions of my esteemed colleagues. This leadership team exemplifies Canon’s dedication to growth and innovation and commitment to our values.”

The additional Canon executive appointments include:

  • Tatsuro Kano has been promoted from senior vice president and general manager of Imaging Technologies and Communications Group, Canon U.S.A., Inc. to executive vice president of the Imaging Technologies and Communications Group.
  • Shinichi Yoshida, executive vice president and general manager of Business Imaging Communications Group, Canon U.S.A., Inc. has been promoted from vice chairman to chairman and chief executive officer of Canon Solutions America. He has added these titles in addition to retaining his role at Business Imaging Communications Group.
  • Katsuhiko Matsufuji has been promoted to the role of vice president and general manager of Marketing, Business Imaging Communications Group, Canon U.S.A., Inc. Mr. Matsufuji is returning to the U.S.A. from Canon Inc. in Tokyo and is replacing Hiro Imamura, who is assuming a role with Canon Europe Inc.
  • Sunday, Mar. 29, 2020
Meet Eric Yuan, the man who made your Zoom meetings possible
In this April 18, 2019 file photo, Zoom CEO Eric Yuan attends the opening bell at Nasdaq as his company holds its IPO in New York. Millions of people are now working from home as part of the intensifying fight against the coronavirus outbreak. Beside relying on Zoom, the video conference service, more frequently as part of their jobs, more people are also tapping it to hold virtual happy hours with friends and family banned from gathering in public places. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

If you hadn't already heard have of Zoom Video Communications, there is a decent chance you've made its acquaintance over the past few weeks. 

Millions of people are now working from home as part of the intensifying fight against the coronavirus outbreak. In addition to using the video conference for work, many are also tapping it to hold virtual playdates for their kids and virtual happy hours with friends and family banned from gathering in public places. 

The crisis has cast a spotlight on Zoom, a company founded nine years ago by its CEO Eric Yuan after he defected from Cisco Systems and took about 40 engineers with him. He wanted to refine a concept he first dreamed up during the 1990s as a college student in China, when he dreaded the 10-hour train trips to see his then-girlfriend, now his wife. 

Now Zoom is booming, just 11 months after it made its debut on the stock market. While the Standard & Poor's 500 index has fallen by 25% since its record high on Feb. 19, Zoom's stock has soared 46% as investors bet on its service becoming a mainstream staple in life after the coronavirus. 

Yuan, 50, recently spoke to The Associated Press during an interview conducted on Zoom. The conversation has been edited for clarity and length.

Q: Are these strange times providing a glimpse at how we are going to be working and living in the future? 

Yuan: I hope this crisis can be over very, very soon, but one one thing I know for sure is that companies will learn this is the way to work. I am pretty sure almost every company will be thinking about it and say, "Hey, maybe working from home makes sense," and maybe let every employee work from home, maybe once a week. Previously, a lot of businesses didn't even want to try. 

Q: Do you think we will find out that people can be more productive at home?

Yuan: It's too early to tell whether it's more productive or less productive, at least for me. I am finding I have even more meetings, and every day I miss the lunch time, so I am also learning how to adapt to all this working from home.

Q: Zoom primarily has been used by businesses. Are you discovering new social applications now that people are using it to virtually hang out too?

Yuan: That is not our intention. But kids are pretty smart, they always figure out new use cases. There are some very cool consumer use cases. For now, I am just telling my team and reminding myself this is a very critical time because we are in a crisis. So we are focusing on two things: To serve our existing customers and make sure our service is always great quality and is always up. The second thing is how can we help the local community, like the K-12 schools, handle this crisis. Anything else, I told our team, that's just a distraction. 

Q: Zoom's stock has been soaring while most of the market has been plunging. How are you managing that?

Yuan: It's good that I am 50 now. If you had asked me this question when I was 25, I would tell you, "Yes, we are very excited about the stock price!" But, now, seriously, I can tell you the truth, it don't matter. So the stock is up, it's good for our investors. If it's down, we keep working hard. I really do not focus on the stock price. 

Q: Do you still see personal, physical interaction as an important element in society?

Yuan: I think for the foreseeable future, that's absolutely right. We still haven't been able to have cool features like a virtual hug that you can actually feel. We talk about that, but we don't have that. Or when you drink tea or coffee, with one click you can digitize a smell. Those features will be available with AR (augmented reality) technology, but for now it's too early. That's why you have to have the personal interactions.

  • Tuesday, Mar. 24, 2020
Maxon to host virtual NAB presence

In light of the cancellation of the 2020 NAB Show next month, Maxon will be hosting a virtual NAB presence on C4DLive.com featuring a lineup of presenters. Monday, April 20, through Thursday, April 23, 2020. The artists originally slated to appear in Las Vegas will share production tips, techniques and inspiration featuring Maxon’s Cinema 4D, Red Giant and Redshift product lines.

For over a decade, at major industry conferences such as NAB, SIGGRAPH, IBC and NAB NY, Maxon has successfully supplemented its physical booth presence with live streaming presentations. This has allowed show attendees and those unable to attend events in person, to benefit from cutting-edge demonstrations, technology updates and interaction with the guest artists in real-time. In the current unusual situation, Maxon is able to take advantage of more than a decade of experience bringing this show to the community around the globe.

Maxon Virtual NAB Show Experience

CEO, Dave McGavran, will kick-off the company’s virtual NAB Show presence on April 20th, at 8:30am (PST), with the latest news about Maxon’s recent merger with Red Giant, recent product releases and exciting new developments.

Live Presentations
Guest artists and Maxon team members will appear daily to present real-world tips and valuable production techniques for film, broadcast, video, games, visualization, interactive media, virtual reality, and more.

Presenter Highlights
Penelope Nederlander, recently named one of the 10 Women of Title Design, will breakdown her latest end credit animation for Birds of Prey, filmmaker Seth Worley will walk through some of the visual effects shots from his latest short film, Darker Colors, Doug Appleton will share the creative processes behind creating the technology for Spider-Man: Far From Home, Jonathan Winbush will demonstrate how easy it is to import C4D scenes into Unreal Engine for rendering or VR/AR output, and Veronica Falconieri Hays will share how she builds cellular landscapes and molecular structures in order to convey complex scientific stories. The lineup of artists also includes acclaimed 3D industry influencers Mike “Beeple” Winkelmann, Stu Machwitz, EJ Hassenfratz, Chris Schmidt, Angie Feret, Kelcey Steele, Daniel “Hashi” Hashimoto, Dan Pierse and Andy Needham.

  • Wednesday, Mar. 18, 2020
Rise expands to support gender diversity within broadcast technology sector
Serena Harris

Rise, the membership organization for gender diversity within the broadcast technology sector, is expanding from its roots in the U.K. with launches in North America and the Asia Pacific (APAC) region. Additionally Rise has appointed four new board members as it seeks to increase its important work throughout the media and entertainment sectors.

Serena Harris, North American sales director at Annex Pro, will be running Rise North America. Harris, who is based in Vancouver, B.C., has over two decades of experience in the media and entertainment industry and worked with Avid and Marquis.

Nancy Diaz Curiel, managing director of Digigram Asia, will run Rise APAC. Based in Singapore, she has over 10 years of experience in the broadcast industry and will be launching a Rise mentoring initiative in the region shortly.

Rise’s alluded to four new board members are: Andy Beale, chief engineer BT Sport, Lisa Lavender, operations director of The British Arrows, Joanna Cosgrove, director at Moore Kingston Smith LLP, and Tanya Rai, key account manager at Sundog Media Toolkit.

Rise managing director Carrie Wootten stated; “Rise is growing at an astonishing rate, and we are immensely grateful to all of our sponsors and partners who have enabled this to happen. Expanding into the North American and APAC market is very exciting, and we are positive Serena and Nancy will go beyond our expectations in advancing our global efforts in gender equality for the industry.”

Rise is supported by leading industry companies including gold sponsors Avid and Sky, and silver sponsors Clear-Com, Audio-Technica Europe, Ross Video, DPP and Pixelogic.

Rise Up, a new school outreach initiative to inspire and educate children about broadcast technology, is supported by BT Sport and Sky.

MySHOOT Company Profiles