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The Science Of Fiction Conference, at the 5D Institute, University of Southern California

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Thursday October 23rd 2014.

Dublin Airport 10.30am – And I’m way too early (but I don’t care, too excited to care) for my flight to Los Angeles to attend the  5D Science Of Fiction 2014 Conference – Rilao Project”, organised by the 5D Institute, which is based in the University of Southern California – http://5dinstitute.org/events/science-of-fiction

Alex McDowell, rightly famous for his Production Design work on such masterpieces as Fight Club and Minority Report, is now the Creative Director of 5D Institute and Professor of Practice at the World Building Media Lab, among other titles.

AMcDowell Headshot small

http://5dinstitute.org/people/alex-mcdowell

Alex has invited me to join the illustrious crowd at the Conference and I am thrilled to be going.

This trip is a dream come true for me. All my life in animation I avoided the American film industry, too corporate, too much cog-in-the-machine for me. I like the small team, all-hands-on-deck feel of European film making, even if it does mean you don’t get the big credits. Why should I care? I probably most enjoyed working on Free Jimmy, and Dolfje Weerwolfje, and even Harry Potter & The Chamber Of Secrets because I was working on that at The Mill in London.

But there is no use denying, LA, or more specifically Hollywood, is the Capital of Cinema, and now I’m going. But as a writer. I still do some consultative work for VFX but my main stream of work these days is writing and that pleases me. I’m involved in a variety of writing projects, among them writing about the future of film in the new age of computer technology.

It is the pursuit of that intriguing subject that is taking me to LA. The 5D Institute is a research laboratory looking into the future of film making, the techniques of virtual production and considering new ways to create narratives for the audience that is or will be springing up to embrace the new technology, both the films we make and the ways in which those films, those image media productions if you will, will be delivered, digitally streamed in fact, to a whole new generation of viewing systems, from Home Cinema to Oculus Rift and who knows what beyond. The Conference will be looking at where we are now and where we can expect to be in 15 and 50 years time.

I’d say the latter could prove to be a little over-ambitious, but you never know with far-sighted, highly intelligent people like Alex McDowell and his team. Still, who in 1964 could have even begun to predict the technological world we live in today? Home computers were undreamed of (we thought they would always be the size of a house), and no-one predicted mobile phones, not even in the most imaginative science fiction, not to mention the Internet, iPads, Digital Video Streaming, or Home Cinema, or 3D Imax, let alone Oculus Rift. Or electric cars or… Almost everything we are now aware of, even familiar with today was beyond our wildest dreams back then.

I look forward to seeing what the people gathered together by the 5D Institute and the World Building Lab come up with. And I look forward to seeing that iconic Hollywood sign with my own eyes!

You may have seen some of my previous articles on  the CGSociety website – you can follow this link to find them http://www.cgsociety.org/index.php/search/?search=Rory+Fellowes&x=4&y=4#gsc.tab=0&gsc.q=Rory%20Fellowes&gsc.page=1

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