Created by Interactive Ontario, X-Summit’s Advisory Committee is an international and national collection of nice, smart, connected industry professionals, who are committed to helping further the interactive industry. They help direct and influence conference content and open up their impressive rolodexes to help secure the best possible speakers to inform, entertain and educate delegates at X-Summit.
IO thanks the following professionals for their invaluable support and input during the creation of X-Summit 2012.
Studio Director, Social Game Universe
Studio Director at Social Game Universe, Sarah is responsible for overseeing all aspects of software and game development. Formerly the Vice President of Programmes and Operations for Interactive Ontario (io) she was responsible for the design and implementation of all io efforts, working with io’s member base and advisory boards to ensure outcomes that were of benefit to the interactive digital media industry at large.
During her five years with the association, io successfully hosted over 750 speakers at over 75 events ranging in size from industry networking events to multi-day/multi-stream conferences. Sarah has been in the media industry since 1997. She spent seven years with the leading boutique film & television production company Rhombus Media, and later in its distribution arm Rhombus International.
Business Analyst & Producer: Interactive, Convergent, Games, bewareoftheleopard.ca
A 10-year veteran of the interactive digital media industry, Sasha is business-focused but content supportive professional who believes that industry growth comes through the innovation and monetization of compelling projects that resonate with their intended audiences. As an independent business consultant to the Canadian digital media industry, she advises on the business management of interactive digital media studios, business models for digital media content, government policy for digital media content, funding proposals to government agencies, and project feasibility assessments.
In addition to her consulting work, Sasha is the Program Coordinator of the Centennial College Interactive Digital Media post-graduate program and an Instructor on marketing and interactive content for the Children’s Entertainment post-graduate program. A graduate of Ryerson University in Radio and Television Arts and Marketing Management, Sasha regularly shares ideas and reference materials via twitter (@sashaboersma), blogs insights on the business of digital media at bewareoftheleopard.ca, and is an occasional contributor to VillageGamer.net.
For the past four years Lenny ran point for Transmedia strategy at video game company THQ with a variety of business partners that included Syfy, Random House, Machinima.com, Funimation, and Sony Pictures. Talent deals included Guillermo del Toro, Tomonobu Itagaki, Patrice Desilets, and Matt Stone & Trey Parker. Prior to joining THQ, Lenny worked at HBO where he covered Everybody Loves Raymond, Martin, Spawn, Sex in the City, and The Sopranos as a current programming executive. He graduated from UCLA and majored in English Literature.
Creative Director & Founder, Red Squid Lab
Anthea Foyer is a diginista, who makes beautiful things using technology, compelling narratives across platforms, and starts conversations between strangers & friends – on and offline. She believes that anything is possible when worlds collide. She has created, produced and advised on a wide array of critically acclaimed projects including graphic novels, interactive installations, online narratives, wearables, interactive installations, participatory theatre, multiplatform experiences and tv and film convergence projects.
She has produced large-scale conferences, developed & presented cutting edge workshops, and curated highly acclaimed exhibits. She can often be found speaking, mentoring and presenting workshops about the continually evolving realm of digital media, with a focus on interactive narrative and the creative convergence of a variety of media forms.
President, GROK! Studio
Co-Executive Producer, HBO’s Game of Thrones
Vince Gerardis began his career as a literary agent specializing in the representation of Intellectual Property rights at The Agency, working under legendary agent Jerry Zeitman. He envisioned then formed Created By in 1998 in conjunction with publishing agent Ralph Vicinanza, who repped such literary giants as Stephen King and Terry Pratchett. The aim of the Created By was to represent the film, television, game and other ancillary rights for the biggest names in science fiction, fantasy, and horror literature. Since it’s inception, the client list has grown to encompass more than 350 authors, over 8000 titles.
During his decade in charge of Created By, Vince has concluded over 1000 option deals and pioneered new forms of copyright protocols and new media & technology deal structures. As representative, Vince also innovated ways of portioning copyrights. He established a reputation among both literary communities and Hollywood as someone who can perform many tasks, both business and creative, with a specific focus on the initial stages of development and packaging.
As producer, Vince has established relationships with several A-list writers, directors and other producers. He was instrumental in the packaging and development JUMPER for New Regency and Fox Studios. Released in February of 2008, Jumper grossed more than $200 Million Dollars worldwide. In 2010, Vince signed a first look deal with HBO.
At the time of publishing, Vince has executive produced two television series. The first, based on the novel by Canadian writer Robert Sawyer, FLASHFORWARD for ABC, written and directed by David Goyer (The Dark Knight; Batman Begins, Blade) and co-written by Brannon Braga (Star Trek: The Next Generation; 24). FlashForward was ABC’s flagship series when it launched, starring Joseph Fiennes, Courtney B. Vance, and John Cho. More recently, GAME OF THRONES released on HBO April 2011 as a prime event in programming. GAME OF THRONES is based on the multi-national bestselling series by George R.R. Martin. Vince was key in packaging David Benioff (TROY) and Dan Weiss (X-MEN 3) into the show.
Vince is also in development on many film and television projects including THE FORGE OF GOD with Ken Nolan (BLACK HAWK DOWN) writing, Marc Forster attached to direct; END OF ETERNITY with New Regency studios, based on the book by Isaac Asimov with Kurtzman & Orci jointly producing; THE FOREVER WAR by Joe Haldeman, with Ridley Scott attached to direct at Fox. And many more.
Grok Studio seeks to establish the world’s first A-list Hollywood fan funded studio (crowd funding) so that fans of well loved book series and other I.P can democratically support and propel their beloved series into derivative media. Secondly, in association with Blur Studios, Grok Studio is launching a professional level community sourced artist arts and renderings contribution system (crowd sourcing), designed to incubate high quality/low cost concept art, digital imagery, previs and other rendering and art development of the most fantastic visual and imagined worlds.
From his first job as an usher at a cinema on a Canadian base in Germany, J has spent two decades working in media. During his undergraduate at Queen’s he founded a recording group that toured with acts such as The Tragically Hip, Wilco, and Primus. After graduation he directed award-winning shorts, worked as a stage manager at the Just for Laughs festival and at every level of production on films, television and commercials in Toronto. Relocating to Vancouver he founded OverInteractive Media Inc. receiving private investment from Bootup Labs and local angels to develop dimeRocker, an award winning tech-enabled agency focused on branded social games, gamification and social TV strategies. dimeRocker was a finalist for “Best New Media Technology” at the 2010 CNMA Awards, and J. was identified by Techvibes as “Digital Media People to Watch in 2011″. Some clients include Disney/ABC, Weinstein Company, CBC, V-Tele, Telus and PwC. Recent conference panels include: Banff World Media Festival, Merging + Media, nextMedia, Mpower Mobile and Social Media + Mobile Marketing Unplugged. Recently he was appointed to the board of the Vancouver International Film Festival, and as a National Advisor for the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television, Merging + Media and X-Summit. In May he founded a new startup CineCoup that is backed by GrowLab and partnered with Cineplex Entertainment. CineCoup is set to launch as in pilot in Canada in fall 2012.
Creative Director, marblemedia
Johnny Kalangis is an internationally acclaimed feature film writer/director and interactive entertainment lead. Johnny currently works at marblemedia as Creative Director within its award-winning interactive department where he oversees the creative development of the company’s digital media productions. Prior to his current post, Johnny worked as Producer and then as Executive in Charge of interactive entertainment at the CBC. There, he worked with A-list properties such as “The Nature of Things,” “Being Erica” and “The Rick Mercer Report.”
Johnny’s movie, “Love Is Work,” premiered at the Whistler Film Festival in 2005, and won the People’s Choice Award. It was also presented by multi Oscar-winner Paul Haggis at its U.S. premiere in Los Angeles. Johnny has lent his time to the Genie and Gemini Awards juries, among others. He has lectured at University of Toronto, Vancouver Film School and Ryerson University on interactive narrative, transmedia storytelling and the convergences of conventional and emerging platforms.
CEO/Founder, Creative D
Creative D is a Toronto-based entertainment software company whose products blend content, social media and games. His a 15-year veteran of digital media, including more than 10 years in strategy, product and business development roles at Canadian broadcasters CHUM and CTV.
Richard counts many Canadian and North American innovations in his accomplishments, including: first interactive television applications in Canada, the first broadcaster mobile video offering, the first cross-carrier ringtone store in North America, the first premium SMS program in North America, and the first licensed interactive music video channel in North America. He has also worked with brands and agencies to develop integrated marketing campaigns, microsites and advergames, including winning the Promax Gold award for an integrated mobile campaign executed with MuchMusic and McDonalds. He also has significant experience in multi-platform content distribution, including structuring licensing deals with all four major labels as well as studios including Disney, Warner and Universal. He has also struck distribution agreements with Apple and with Canadian mobile operators Bell Mobility and Telus Mobility. Richard holds a film degree from York University and was a resident at the Canadian Film Centre’s New Media program. He is a frequent speaker and instructor on the integration of digital and traditional media and emerging business models.
CEO & Co-Founder, 4iQ
CEO, Canadian Interactive Alliance / L’alliance interactive canadienne (CIAIC)
Ian is a 18-year veteran entrepreneur, producer and advocate in the interactive digital media industry in Canada. He is currently the CEO of 4iQ, a new venture creating a mobile social platform at the nexus of game-based entertainment and learning for kids. He is also currently CEO of the Canadian Interactive Alliance, a federation of seven digital media trade organizations from across Canada representing over 1000 companies working in interactive media in such areas as video game development, mobile innovation and online content creation.
From 2003 to 2011 Ian was President and CEO of Interactive Ontario (io), a member-based industry trade association representing over 320 companies. At io, Ian founded three major events: GameON: Finance, a financial forum for the video games industry, X-Summit (formerly IN: the INteractive Exchange), Canada’s largest annual cross-platform business event and INplay focusing on kids and interactivity.
Founder/Executive Producer, Changing Channels Entertainment
Alan is an Emmy®-award winning content creator and producer. He is the founder and executive producer at Changing Channels Entertainment. Changing Channels seeks active ways to transcend media boundaries in the development of innovative entertainment properties. Alan often works with television producers to develop cool convergent projects. He also offers strategic consulting services relating to the changing face of the media world.
Alan has an extensive background in the area of digital content and brings a unique combination of technical and business perspectives to his analysis of emerging technologies and business models. He has unique insight into the state of the art in cross-platform / transmedia programming and has advised and consulted with broadcasters, associations, government organizations, funding bodies and companies up and down the media industry value chain.
With a background in live action, animation and event production, as well as a CFC Media Lab Residency under her belt, Vanessa has built a life on turning personal obscure media obsessions into her career.
Currently, Vanessa is designing for the Holodeck (fingers crossed). While at the CFC, she co-created a Kinect prototype called Heart of Stars, which debuted at Nuit Blanche and was recently performed at the 2012 CDA Awards at The National Arts Centre. She continues to work with motion capture and live special effects, currently collaborating with director Alison Humphrey, York University, Gesture Tek and Motives in Movement / Dynamixyz to produce a groundbreaking production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. This technical proof of concept will encompass new software and processes relevant to previsualization, performance and production.
Previously, Vanessa spent a number of years putting her skills to use working in concept development, as well as consulting on subjects such as how TV relates to the internet. She cares deeply about television, and watches it entirely online. The future is bright for those who love and/or make 22 and 48 minute blocks of linear narrative, regardless of platform.
President, Brain Candy, LLC
Scott’s a self-described typing monkey who spends much of his time thinking about participatory storytelling and collaborative worldbuilding. He is President of Brain Candy, LLC, a co-founder of Transmedia L.A., and the creator of the Shared Story Worlds website. Scott has spoken often about participatory entertainment and transmedia, including at events such as SXSW, Digital Book World, and DIY Days L.A.