At the Imagina CG Conference, Associate VFX Supervisor Christophe Hery will serve as moderator for the Virtual Actors Forum, along with Dan Piponi who was Chief Science Officer at ESC for the Matrix trilogy. The event will take place February 4, 2005. Also Dr. Ron Fedkiw, who consults for ILM, will give a keynote that same day on "Physically-based approaches for the simulation of natural phenomena and visual effects", and former ILM Supervisor Habib Zargarpour will talk about cinematic gaming. Other highlights includes the 2 special events: a talk with Tim Sarnoff, President of Imageworks, and a DreamWorks 10th Anniversary event.
The virtual actors forum seems to indicate Dan Piponi has joined the R&D team at ILM. He was responsible for much of the innovation including image based techniques (for which he received a an Academy Sci-Tech award) and fire simulation. The panel has many of the leading experts: Henrik Wann Jensen, of UC San Diego, led the development of the modern subsurface scattering techniques later applied in film to characters as Dobby and Gollum, Paul Debevec, of USC, is one of the main forces behind image based techniques which led to the environments and virtual sets seen in films like the Matrix trilogy and Spider-Man 2, Bay Raitt, who worked at Weta Digital as a digital modeler and was in charge of modeling Gollum's facial system, and CG researcher Lance Williams who has done work on computer vision and image processing.
There are many VFX related presentation covering such projects like Shark Tale by DreamWorks, The Incredibles by Pixar, Spider-Man 2 by Imageworks, Troy by The Moving Picture Company, Alexander by Buf Compagnie, King Arthur by Cinesite UK and Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by Framestore/CFC.
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Originally spotted on VFXBlog.com.