Final Program

(as of May 1, subject to change)

Event Schedule

8 a.m.: Registration Opens
9 a.m.: Conference Sessions
5:45 p.m.: Networking Reception (Off-site)


9:00 – 9:05 a.m.
Welcome Remarks

Devendra Mishra, HITS Conference Chairman & Chief Strategist, MESA

9:05 – 10 a.m.
CIO PANEL: The Strategic Challenges for Growth and Profitability of the Enterprise
The emergence of digital technology, ubiquitous internet, social media and the decline of the physical medium have necessitated a transformational role for Information Technology as its focus shifts from technology to business. IT executives from affected industries will address objectives, strategies and tactics undertaken to transform their businesses and revitalize the industry. In addition, best practices for cost containment and effective development of software, hardware, infrastructure and network will be shared.
Moderator: Leo Collins, Oracle Customer Advisor, Oracle
Gary Davis, Senior Vice President, Operations & IT, RLJ Entertainment
John Herbert, Executive Vice President & Chief Information Officer, Fox Filmed Entertainment
Michael Keithley, Chief Information Officer, CAA
Theresa Miller, Chief Information Officer and Executive Vice President, Information Technology, Lionsgate
Scott Phelan, Group Information Officer, Warner Bros. Entertainment

10 – 10:45 a.m.
CTO Panel: Evolving Studio Technology
As a follow-up to their panel discussion at this year’s CES, studio Chief Technology Officers will debate how their work is evolving in delivering content to audiences, split between more screens than ever before. What operational advancements are being made and what are the remaining challenges? How is changing technology – i.e. advanced theatrical projection to cloud-based entertainment distribution and more, impacting studio business? Where do technology innovations fit with the strides made by IT departments to streamline efficiencies and continue building the backbone for the various business units at the studios?
Moderator: Guy Finley, Executive Director, MESA
Hanno Basse, Chief Technology Officer, Fox Filmed Entertainment
Chris Cookson, President, Technologies at Sony Pictures Entertainment
Justin Herz, Senior Vice President, Direct-to-Consumer, Warner Bros. Digital Distribution & General Manager, Warner Bros. Advanced Digital Services
Jamie Voris, Chief Technology Officer, The Walt Disney Studios
Lincoln Wallen, Chief Technology Officer, Dreamworks Animation

10:45 – 11:15 a.m.

11:15 – 11:30 a.m.
Disruptive Innovation in the Entertainment Marketplace: New Rules of Engagement!
The challenges and opportunities of title delivery over the next few years have been accentuated by digital technology, consumer demands and the necessity for transformational business models. The collision of digital film making, digital delivery to all windows, the explosion of assets and distribution builds, and the ever present studio constraints of time, financial and labor are a new business reality. Presentation will cover how disruptive innovation can be achieved by leveraging business rules, standards and automation across the entire supply chain of Hollywood.
Steve Dahl, Senior Vice President Operations / Supply Chain, Walt Disney Studio Operations

11:30 a.m. – 11:50 a.m.
Surfing with an Elephant: Apache Hadoop in the Enterprise
There is a fundamental platform change happening in the enterprise as organizations look to take advantage of the wave of big data that is sweeping over them. Apache Hadoop is an open source big data platform that is enabling them to surf the data wave and find new  opportunities and efficiencies in their business. In this short talk we will look at several examples of innovative companies successfully surfing with the elephant.
John Kreisa, Vice President Strategic Marketing, Hortonworks

11:50 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Leveraging Data Science to Advance the Business of Entertainment
Data has never played a more central role in both driving innovation and producing new business models in the entertainment industry. Today’s industry leaders are successfully deploying technologies to leverage external and internal data throughout the content lifecycle – from green lighting a project to digital delivery by enabling smarter investments, optimizing marketing and distribution decisions, and creating more engaging consumer experiences.
Moderator: Tom Moran, Senior Director, Media & Entertainment, Savvis, A CenturyLink Company
Vivek Kalra, Senior Vice President, Information Resources, TicketMaster Entertainment
John Kreisa, Vice President, Strategic Marketing, Hortonworks
Rashmi Nigam, Director of Product Management, Machinima

12:30 – 12:50 p.m.
Developing a Mobile Product and Technology Strategy to Maximize Revenue
As fans increasingly use smartphones and tablets, hear how the NFL is re-architecting its technology platforms and mobile applications to leverage location, augmented reality, companion viewing, notifications, and real time communication to serve fans.
Manish Jha, General Manager, Mobile, NFL

12:50 – 1 p.m.
Introduction to HITS Innovation and Technology Showcases

Hear from each of the presenters about the innovations and technologies they are showacsing during the breakout sessions in the afternoon.
Moderator: Guy Finley, Executive Director, MESA

1 – 2:15 p.m.

2:15 p.m. – 3 p.m.
Enhancing and Expanding the Ecosystem for Metadata
The entertainment industry ecosystem of content owners, distributors, aggregators and retailers have been establishing master and meta data standards to enable digital commerce through several industry initiatives of DEG, EMA, EIDR, ETC, CIMM and HITS. A significant opportunity remains to enhance the lubrication of the supply chain with metadata which is also available from several reliable sources like IMDb, ISAN, Tribune and Rovi. Stakeholders will explore how friction can be eliminated in the digital supply chain where platforms, channels and web-enabled devices are critical.
Moderator: Eric Iverson, Vice President, Information Technology, Worldwide Networks, Sony Pictures Television
Susan Cheng, Vice President, Supply Chain Planning and Data Governance, Warner Bros. Entertainment
David Kohl, Lead Program Manager, CIMM TAXI Cross-Platform Asset Identification Program
Michael Pusateri, Advisor, Cielo24
Clyde Smith, Senior Vice President, New Technology, FOX Network Engineering and Operations
Kip Welch, Vice President, Business Development, Motion Pictures Laboratories

3 – 3:30 p.m.
Building the Production to Exhibition Workflow: A Call to Action
Production, distribution and exhibition are undergoing an unprecedented transformation in the digital world, resulting in expanding revenues across platforms and territories. Streaming of episodic content and VOD have been growing and the impact of social media has been positive. Web-enabled devices have widened usage of content anywhere. The digital workflow from concept to delivery faces the challenges of systematization, efficiency, quality and timeliness. Executives will address the unique opportunities to enhance the overall supply chain in terms of integrated systems, metadata, automation, script and contract management, budgeting and scheduling, document management, spend tracking and analysis, business intelligence, mobility demands, archiving, APIs and management reporting. This is an endeavor to promote collaboration in the industry.
Moderator: Devendra Mishra, Conference Chairman, HITS
Sean Cooney, Vice President, Advanced Production Technology, Warner Bros.
Chris Coye, Senior Vice President & Chief Information Officer, Disney ABC Television Group
Alex Grimwade, Senior Vice President Information Technology, Twentieth Century Fox Television
Ivan Gueron, Divisional Chief Information Officer, Sony Pictures Entertainment
Benjamin Hope, Senior Vice President, Chief Information Officer, Fox Networks Group
Tom Roach, Vice President, Worldwide Theatrical Distribution, Marketing & Production, Warner Bros.

3:30 – 3:45 p.m.

3:45 – 5:30 p.m.
HITS Innovation and Technology Showcases
(Multi-Track Break-Out Sessions)

Industry experts share innovative ideas, processes, or perspectives in an interactive and intimate way with the audience who are free to choose which topic/area they find most interesting. Sessions will address key areas on four separate tracks: Automation Of Digital Supply Chain; Software, Cloud & Storage; Big Data, Analytics & Social Media; and Mobile Technologies.

3:45 – 4:20 p.m.
HBO’s Take on Managing Production Assets
This session discusses why a centralized system for managing production assets starting in development is critical to the document and information workflow for HBO and their productions. Join us to learn how they are solving this studio-wide need and how managing production assets for their productions is a completely different workflow from managing digital assets.
Jim Miller, Manager of Information Technology, HBO
with Darren Ehlers, Senior Vice President, Products, Scenechronize at Ease

4:20 – 4:55 p.m.
The New Digital Supply Chain
This session discusses streamlining digital servicing and building next generation digital asset search and delivery applications using Enterprise NoSQL technology. This new generation of applications provide users with the complete picture of assets, creates workflow applications to reduce the effort of delivering digital products, powers new innovative viewing experiences and provides views across the organization to better report on and analyze utilization and efficiency. This showcase will include an overview of Warner Bros.’ digital servicing applications, the challenges with traditional technology approaches and additional examples of Enterprise NoSQL in action from CondeNast, BBC and Sony.
Eddie Lee, Director Digital Media Initiatives, Warner Bros.
Matt Turner, Chief Technologist, Media Solutions, MarkLogic

4:55 – 5:30 p.m.
Bridging On-Premises and Cloud Deployments for an Infrastructure Agnostic World
Why choose between cloud and on premise compute and storage when you can have both? Today’s media workflows are increasingly moving to end-to-end, customized and automated operations involving some cloud, some on-premise storage, and the integration of multiple, geographically-dispersed processes and teams. In this session, learn how infrastructure-agnostic software technologies are enabling these new workflows by allowing digital content to be securely and practically ingested, accessed and distributed, regardless of storage type or location (block, object, on-premises, in the cloud, hybrid or embedded) and independently of network type or conditions.
John King, Senior Sales Engineer, Aspera

3:45 – 4:20 p.m.
Enabling Users while Protecting Content in the Post-PC Era
As the use of tablets and mobile devices has proliferated in media and entertainment companies, the issue of protecting sensitive content has jumped to the forefront of many CIOs’ minds. Whether sanctioned by IT or not, employees have begun to access their data on post-PC devices, often via file-syncing applications like Dropbox. There are a variety of approaches to enable users to securely access and share this data, including mobile device management (MDM), mobile application management (MAM), application containerization, virtual desktops, data loss prevention (DLP), and building security into the data itself. This session discusses the strengths and weaknesses of these technologies and the future of content protection.
Paul Gaffner, Executive Director of Motion Picture Production Applications, Sony Pictures Entertainment
Ryan Kalember, Chief Product Officer, WatchDox

4:20 – 4:55 p.m.
Strawberry Coconut Cloud: Choose Your Flavor
You should be able to customize your cloud as much as your ice cream. With no two applications performing the same, choose a hybrid cloud solution that fits the unique requirements of each app. Combine features of a Public Cloud, Private Cloud and dedicated hardware into a single solution sprinkled with the functionality of a broad portfolio tailored to fit your compute, storage and networking needs. You can now put workloads where they perform best, in one seamless integrated environment. All powered by Openstack! Hosted in your data center, a Rackspace data center or a combination of both. Learn how to securely move workloads between data centers, allowing you the necessary security of a private environment with the scalable provisioning offered by a hosting provider. Why choose one or the other when you can have both? Come join us to see why the freedom of an open source hybrid cloud could make all the difference for your applications. Your app isn’t traditional; your hosting solution shouldn’t be either.
John Igoe, Vice President, Technology, Rackspace

4:55 – 5:30 p.m.
Around the World in 8 Minutes

What do you do when you have production teams in every corner of the planet – shooting content you need, like yesterday. Oh, and by the way? Studio execs want to review yesterday’s shoot – dozens of gigabytes worth. And the editor wants to send the latest rough cut, legal needs to review, and marketing wants to prepare materials. And don’t even get us started on the visibility, search, and review and approval process. But what if there was a way to do all of this, virtually, in minutes? This session illustrates how SMCS revolutionary technology called “Ci” delivers a whole new way for the media and entertainment industry to create and collaborate.
Ben Masek, Chief Technology Officer, Sony Media Cloud Services

3:45 – 4:20 p.m.
Completely Over the Top
Over the Top Video Services are growing rapidly and becoming a part of the mix for every major Network, Cable Provider, and Distribution Partner. Working with some of the leading companies in the field Savvis has developed a deep understanding of the business strategies, operational approaches and infrastructure requirements that are essential to successful deployments of OTT platforms. Savvis will share the lessons learned deploying and operating many of the largest and most successful solutions in the industry.
Terry Barbounis, Practice Lead and Solution Architect for Media – Savvis, A CenturyLink Company

4:20 – 4:55 p.m.
BI for the Right Side of the Brain
Business Intelligence is an analytic process, is it not? It is surely rational, logical and reduces complex business scenarios to models and measures and numbers – to “facts” and “single versions of the truth”. This breakout demonstrates that this is nonsense! Data analysis is an emotional and creative process. Business Intelligence is about discovering patterns and exploring hunches. BI supports decisions, but decisions are intuitive just as much as they are fact-based or balanced. This is especially true in industries which are themselves creative; which deal in the shifting patterns of taste and human choice. If we are to succeed in breaking Business Intelligence out from a small circle of practitioners to be a wide-ranging practice, we need to build BI that speaks to all our needs. Join our provocative session exploring how we can develop BI practices that meet basic human needs for information, exploration and decision making.
Donald Farmer, Vice President Product Management, QlikTech

4:55 – 5:30 p.m.
Going Beyond Unique Identifiers: Integrating Third-Party Metadata as Part of Your Digital Supply Chain Strategy
Millions of film and TV assets are created each year. Thanks to the ability to uniquely identify content across participants in the supply chain through EIDR, businesses are benefiting with increased efficiencies and revenue opportunities. But that is just the tip of the iceberg — after you’ve identified a piece of content, there are multiple metadata assets, including box office data, release and air dates, credits, images and descriptors like genre or themes that go with it. This session shares strategies and examples of how Hollywood is utilizing third-party standardized metadata to streamline processes, uncover hidden insights and solve issues throughout the digital supply chain.
Bill Isbell, Senior Account Manager, Rovi Corporation

3:45 – 4:20 p.m.
The Care and Feeding of Snowflakes
Today’s businesses have a variety of employees with distinct working styles and technology needs. Creatives like to work collaboratively and look for powerful design tools. Some engineers work independently and need highly complex modeling software and high-capacity processors to run it. And even within those groups, no two are quite the same. Whatever their area of expertise, employees expect their employer to provide the tools that allow them to perform. Oh, yeah, and everyone wants to be able to work remotely, as well. This session raises these issues and suggests companies can give employees the tools they need to perform in a way that works within corporate strategy and budget. Key points include how to provide hardware, software and business applications in a multidisciplinary workplace where device flexibility, personal taste and OS loyalty are important considerations.
Deanna Johnston, Chief Information Officer, Belkin International, Inc.

4:20 – 4:55 p.m.
Master of Your Data Universe: Strategies for Mining Value from One of Your Key Corporate Assets…Your Data
The Media & Entertainment industry is facing an avalanche of data residing in a multitude of systems/platforms. Strategic companies are consolidating data to drive new revenue, reduce costs and increase operational efficiency. The bi-product is a flexible IT system that supports rapid new product innovation, new customer demands and changing industry standards, like EIDR and UltraViolet, without the need to re-tool existing systems. Learn how to be the master of your “data” universe including specific use cases for title management and the new consumer.
Mark Bryan, Enterprise Data Management for M&E, Oracle

4:55 – 5:30 p.m.
Making the Business of Video Manageable: A Conversation with The Young Turks and RTM Productions
We’re living in an era of limitless television where audiences are consuming more video through a growing number of services and devices. The opportunities can’t be denied: the demand for new content producers has never been higher; advertisers are able to reach their audiences in extremely contextual environments; and publishers can tap into new, lucrative monetization streams. However, this tremendous growth has introduced a two-fold problem. Stakeholders must now manage an exhaustive number of relationships and embrace disparate technologies in order to stay relevant. This presentation will introduce feasible solutions for streamlining video with a discussion featuring OneScreen’s innovative customers, leading online news show The Young Turks and producer of America’s leading automotive how-to shows RTM Productions, who have used some of these capabilities and strategies to grow beyond their original channels.
Matthew Hawkins, Vice President of Marketing & Digital, RTM Productions
Steven S. Oh, Chief Operating Officer, The Young Turks
Atul Patel, Chief Executive Officer and Founder, OneScreen

5:45 – 7:30 p.m.
Off-Site Cocktail Reception at Cafe Habana in Malibu

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