The cutting edge of the convergence of digital storytelling and technology will be on display at the upcoming View Conference, at which industry pros at various levels, fans and geeks of different stripes will be able to take a deep dive into the latest developments in animation, VFX, virtual production and games. Event runs Oct. 17-22.
On the creative side, the range of top-notch guests at View this year goes from Oscar-winning cinematographer Roger Deakins, who is being feted and will kick off proceedings with a live chat held with “How to Train Your Dragon” franchise director Dean DeBlois, Tom McGrath, whose “The Boss Baby: Family Business” is the sixth DreamWorks Animation film he has directed, and eminent animator Jorge Gutierrez, who’s set to deliver the closing keynote by delving into how his anticipated Mexican fantasy series “Maya and the Three” (pictured) was made, just as it drops on Netflix.
In terms of tech, a panel will bring together the chief technology officers of three U.S. industry powerhouses: Nick Cannon of Walt Disney Animation Studios; Pixar’s Steve May; and Mike Ford from Sony Pictures Imageworks. And there are going to be plenty of software training sessions, including one from Marc Petit, general manager of Epic Games’ popular 3D creation platform Unreal Engine, as well as the launch of Houdini 19, the latest release of the 3D animation Houdini software from Toronto-based SideFX that is used to create visual effects by many of the world’s top film and game studios.
“This year more than any other year we are exploring the connection between innovation, technology and creativity,” says View conference director Maria Elena Gutierrez, who has been steadily growing the event held in Turin over the past two decades.
By now, “everyone in Hollywood and Silicon Valley knows about this conference,” she says. The massive program, both online and in-person, “really reflects the kind of status we have in the industry.”
View, which was held entirely online last year, had a global reach of 180,000 viewers in 2020.
View’s 22nd edition, which will run Oct. 17-22, will be a hybrid affair, with a mix of in-person events, held in Turin’s monumental Officine Grandi Riparazioni (OGR) industrial space, along with virtual sessions. Just as last year, it will be free to attend.
Four virtual rooms will be active almost round-the-clock for six days providing over 200 speakers and more than 150 talks, panels, workshops, masterclasses and keynote speeches.
Though due to COVID-19 constraints, the bulk of events will be online, roughly 40 speakers will be making the physical trek to Turin, including Pixar character designer and “Luca” art director Deanna Marsigliese, who will hold a six-hour master class titled Collaging Life, which will not be available online and for which people are flying in from Germany, the U.K. and Israel.
“The artists that are coming to Turin, they are turning themselves over to me; they will be like artists-in-residence,” Gutierrez says.
This year several visiting film directors will fulfill View’s mandate to bring industry veterans and students together. There will be three-hour-long life-drawing workshops with director Tomm Moore, co-director of the Oscar-nominated “Wolfwalkers,” and Kris Pearn (“The Willoughbys”), and a storytelling workshop with Mike Rianda, director of “The Mitchells vs. the Machines.”
“It’s not an event, it’s not a festival — it’s a community, more like a family,” says Gutierrez, who points out that top industry folks go from movie to movie, “and they are worn out.”
But they still want to participate at View, “simply because they believe in giving back.”