M+E Europe

MESA Debuts New Metaverse Virtual Environment Using ICVR Tech

The last two years have been all about video conferencing, a convenient — but limited — technology that’s managed to keep us connected. Today, though, companies and organisations everywhere are looking to do more than Zoom and Microsoft Teams to bring people together.

On Oct. 21, MESA took its first step in its “metaverse” journey with its Introducing the MESAverse event, debuting a virtual work environment for all of its members and communities to watch live presentations, network, and step on the stage to share opinions.

MESAverse is using ICVR’s RendezVu, a proprietary, interactive 3D-world application that will allow for hybrid live and virtual events and regular day-to-day interactions that go far beyond video conferencing.

At the Oct. 21 event, invited attendees were treated to an explainer of the game-engine powered technology by Sinan Al-Rubaye, chief experience officer for ICVR, who then interviewed Ted Schilowitz, futurist in residence for ViacomCBS, about “Why the Metaverse Matters to Hollywood,” covering the ways virtual and augmented reality are transforming the storytelling experience.

Attendees were then treated to a host of breakout sessions, covering virtual production, smart content, metadata and the upcoming launch of the Media & Entertainment Data Center Alliance (MEDCA).

In the virtual production track, ICVR’s Al-Rubaye and Mariana Acuña Acosta, chief product officer for Glassbox Technologies, Ihar Heneralau, CEO of ICVR, and Ryan L’Italien, director of solutions for Perforce Software, looked at how nascent virtual production technologies have panned out to date, and why the use of game engines for virtual production will take the concept beyond pre-vis, scouting, and mocap into a larger, more central role.

In “Storytelling Reimagined: Animation,” ICVR’s Al-Rubaye and chief product officer Chris Swiatek, along with Adam Maier, producer with Reel FX and Brian Pohl, M&E technical program manager for Epic Games, discuss real-time game engines, their readiness, and their impact on the animation industry.

In the data session “Driving Data Standards in Media & Entertainment,” Mary Yurkovic, director of the Smart Content Council, Hollie Choi, executive director of EIDR, and Yonah Levenson, executive director of Ad-ID and co-chair of the Language Metadata Table (LMT) Working Group, and Meg Morrissey, co-chair of the LMT Working Group, looked at the state of standards in the data space.

Then, Yurkovic, Choi, Nona Janssen Walls, senior principal for Slalom Consulting, and Allan McLennan, head of M&E North America for Atos, discussed how to achieve the overall objectives of any given data journey in the session “Integrating the Data Journey throughout your Company.”

“MEDCA: A New Foundation for Data-Centric Workflows” offered insights into how 90 percent of today’s M&E workflows are based on data-centric processes, all while the entertainment industry is mostly built on legacy platforms, integrated out of necessity, rather than a structured engineered approach. MEDCA’s Eric Rigney, VP, Lisa Griffin, executive director, and Sean Tajkowski, technical director, shared ideas on how to solve this disconnect.

And in “Designing our Industry’s Future: Accepted vs. Acceptable” Tajkowski led a panel with Ryan Guardino, VP of home entertainment mastering technical operations for Pixelogic; Mike Hastings, technical account executive of data centre integration for IES Communications; Ramy Katrib, CEO of DigitalFilm Tree; and John Schmidt, global data centre solutions for Commscope, tackling the use cases and examples that support the MEDCA mission of educating the Media and Entertainment industry about building physical infrastructure on a proper foundation.

The Introduction to the MESAverse event was sponsored by ICVR, BuyDRM, Convergent Risks, IBM Security, PacketFabric, Richey May Technology Solutions, Synamedia, and Vision Media. The event was produced by MESA, in association with the Content Delivery & Security Association (CDSA), the Smart Content Council, the Hollywood IT Society (HITS), Women in Technology Hollywood (WiTH), the Media & Entertainment Data Center Alliance (MEDCA) and the Entertainment ID Registry (EIDR).