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What to Expect at SMPTE 2020

October 21, 2020
Join us as we honor industry luminaries and next-generation leaders!


Awards Gala  

Free for all conference attendees

Progress Medal, Natalie Kalmus

The 2020 Progress Medal is awarded to Natalie Kalmus, in recognition of her pioneering contribution to motion picture color. As co-founder of the Technicolor Motion Picture Corporation, Kalmus helped to develop the Technicolor process, a groundbreaking innovation that had an unparalleled impact on filmmaking. She worked on more than 400 films, including The Wizard of Oz, as color director, ensuring that the Technicolor process was used to its fullest extent to enhance and not detract from the story. Kalmus, the self-described “Ringmaster to the Rainbow,” was an exemplary role model, especially for young women.


568807-5f3aad7959a3fHonorary Membership, John D. Ross, Founder, Ross Video Ltd.
Honorary Membership is conferred upon John Ross, in recognition of a lifetime of advancing the state-of-the-art in television engineering. His work and inventions have spanned more than five decades, particularly in video processing, special effects and keying. Among his early achievements, in 1956 Ross designed the first video production switcher in Canada to offer wipes and keys.  Later, he designed the industry’s first solid-state TV production switcher and a solid-state master control switcher. Founder of one of the industry’s leading equipment suppliers, Ross is the embodiment of a role model, mentor, and leader.


Honorary Membership is conferred upon Reed Hastings, in recognition of his momentous development and continued leadership of Netflix. Hastings been a significant force in growing motion picture and television viewing beyond theatrical and traditional broadcasting to include internet streaming on a multitude of wired and wireless platforms.


579641-5f44383515d5cHonorary Membership, Richard Edlund, ASC

Honorary Membership is conferred upon Richard Edlund, in recognition of his lifetime advancing the art and science of visual effects cinematography. His work on special effects began with the Star Wars franchise and led to the development and implementation of digital image processing technology and innovative operating techniques that have driven the rapid evolution of special effects in virtually every form of visual entertainment. Edlund has been valued by the motion picture industry for his many technical innovations, including the Empire Motion Picture Camera System.

Tuesday Highlights

Standards Session: Are standards still relevant in a post-COVID world?
Join Bruce Devlin & Thomas Bause Mason as we take a look at the changing face of the media technology industry and explore a future in which Open Source, Standards and Cloud fulfill different, but essential roles in creating an interoperable global eco-system. We look at why nation-state policy frameworks are still important and how massive, well-funded Open Source projects are vital but not the only way in which global interoperability can be achieved. We also look at what SMPTE is doing to foster active special-interest groups and to assist the promotion of their work onto a global stage.

Audio Engineering Society: Sound in Mandarin-Speaking Movies
TU Duu-Chih is the mind and ear behind the sound of numerous Mandarin-speaking films. In a career spanning over four decades, Tu has worked with prominent directors such as Edward Yang, Hou Hsiao-Hsien, and Wang Kar-Wei. With a record of twelve Golden Horse Awards and a Cannes’ Technical Grand Prize on his belt, Tu received the National Award for Arts from Taiwan in 2004 for his significant contribution to the art and science of film in Taiwan. In this session, Tu will use some examples to share how he created the sound of these Mandarin classics.

Wednesday Highlights

Introduction to the Agile Methodology for Project Management
Traditional project management has supported organizations for managing people and processes to complete work initiatives ever since the Apollo 11 mission to the Moon. However, with the age of software, the need for closer collaboration and tighter deadlines required new tools and a change in the thought process.

Ask a Fellow - Advice to My Younger Self
Join us for a casual conversation with some of our SMPTE Fellows, who will share what they've learned throughout their careers and involvement with SMPTE.

Thursday Highlights

What’s It All About: The Heart and Spirit of Esports
Enjoy the ride from consoles to Arenas. What is esports? Why does it matter and why is it so popular? Join us for this exciting introduction to esports and get to know the human and technical aspects of competitions and all that precedes it. During this initial session, experts will explain the true nature of esports’ success. The human side of the industry is all about non-traditional athletes having an athletic experience, bringing communities together, and creating new communities of followers. In addition, this session will introduce the “magical” infrastructure that enables teams to compete “on a level playing field” across large geographic areas.

The Magic Enabler: The Esports Architecture
So, what kind of infrastructure does it take to enable exciting team competitions to be played on a “level playing field”? Between the technology, production crew, callers, and many other pieces, it is a complex system. During this session, you will learn in detail about the architecture, individual technologies, and everything else needed to produce the magic of esports competition.

Boots on the Ground Esports: Real World Experiences
The previous session explained the details of the esports architecture under ideal, theoretical conditions. There are, however, challenges that must be worked out and lessons that have been learned. There are also innovations in technology occurring and anyone of them could be a “game” changer! In this session, you will hear from the experts who have implemented esports competitions and met the challenges head-on. Hear how they solved issues and what new technologies are being tested. You will also hear a moderated expert panel discuss the potential opportunities the esports infrastructure has for more traditional content creators.

Tag(s): Featured , SMPTE 2020

Frank Kunkle

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