The Digital Hollywood Experience

The Digital Hollywood Experience


Tuesday, October 10th, 2017

10:00 AM - 11:15 AM

Track I: Haas Conference Center, Room 172 & 173: Live Webcast

The Phenomenon of AR Gets Real - Entertainment, Advertising, Education - The Gateway to the Future

Ashley Crowder, CEO, Co-Founder, VNTANA

Jonathan Dotan, Chief Strategy Officer, Otoy

Neil Parris, AR/VR, Entertainment Partnerships Lead, Google

Keith Soljacich, VP/Director, Technology, DigitasLBi

Arno Hartholt, Director of Research and Development Integration, USC Institute for Creative Technologie

Ben Stein, General Manager of Studios, 8i

Nancy King, Consultant, NewView Marketing, Moderator


Jonathan Dotan, Chief Strategy Officer, Otoy: Jonathan leads strategy for OTOY and co-founded OTOY Studios to create a slate of content with next-generation storytellers. Jonathan brings 20 years of experience in the technology and entertainment industries. He recently finished four seasons as co-producer of HBO's Emmy Award winning series SILICON VALLEY. Previously, Jonathan served as President of Media and Digital Strategy at the private equity arm of Future Group. He also worked for the Motion Picture Association in over 30 countries as a liaison from the studios to local film industries and governments.

Keith Soljacich, VP/Dir, Technology, DigitasLBi: As VP Technology at DigitasLBi, Keith specializes in the technologies that power innovative marketing and advertising campaigns for our clients. At DigitasLBi we work with iconic brands like Whirlpool, AMEX, MIllerCoors, Disney and PlayStation to develop the next generation of digital creative technology. With a background in Production and CGI, Keith specializes in immersive technologies like AR/VR and AI . Meanwhile, in the Lab, he oversees a steady stream of research and development, prototyping and experimentation to find the next innovative solution for our clients.


Ashley Crowder, CEO, Co-Founder, VNTANA: Ashley Crowder is the co-founded and CEO of VNTANA, an augmented reality computing platform that allows brands to easily create interactive hologram experiences to engage consumers while collecting data. It has been used by major brands including Microsoft, Intel, Mercedes-Benz, Lexus, Pepsi and Universal. Prior to co-founding VNTANA she graduated from USC with a bachelors and masters in engineering and gained valuable manufacturing experience at Gulfstream, Northrop Grumman and BP. She leverages her engineering background to guide VNTANA’s overall direction and technology development. Ashley has been a speaker at Digital Summit, Internet Summit, Augmented World Expo, TEDx Venice, the World Economic Forum’s Global Growth Companies & Technology Pioneers, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship, The Montgomery Summit, Siemer Summit, Digital LA, and others. Ashley was featured as one of USC’s leading engineering CEOs of 2016. Ashley is a part of the Microsoft Early Developer Program along with the Microsoft Bizspark Plus program.


Neil Parris leads Google's AR / VR content efforts across the entertainment vertical, partnering with world-class IP owners and talent to develop and distribute innovative content experiences across Google’s platforms. Before joining the Daydream team, Parris led entertainment partnerships for Google's Consumer Apps Marketing group and oversaw major content/marketing partnerships with Disney, Warner Bros., Netflix, Fox, ABC and others.. Prior to Google, Parris worked at EQAL, an early pioneer in the YouTube/social/influencer space (later acquired by Everyday Health), Edelman (in their branded entertainment division) and 8+ years in the film business as a creative executive. Parris is a member of the TV Academy and serves on the Digital Strategy Committee. Parris holds a bachelor’s degree from University of Pennsylvania and an MFA in Film / TV Producing from the University of Southern California's School of Cinematic Arts' Peter Stark Program.


Ben Stein is General Manager of Studios at 8i, overseeing volumetric capture in 8i's Playa Vista, CA studio and leading virtual reality business development. Before 8i, Ben oversaw video the video production at Collectively, launched owned & operated channels at Fullscreen and Big Frame multichannel networks, produced television at MTV & Current TV, and worked in comedy development at Carsey Werner Films.  At 8i, Ben works with brands, agencies, creatives, and developers to capture human performance with 8i's proprietary technology and widely distribute those volumetric assets with integrations into mobile AR, immersive VR and mixed reality experiences.


Arno Hartholt is the Director of Research and Development Integration at the University of Southern California Institute for Creative Technologies where he leads the virtual human integration and central asset production & pipeline group. He is responsible for much of the technology, art, and processes related to virtual humans and related systems, in particular at the interchange between research and industry capabilities. He has a leading role on a wide variety of research prototypes and applications, ranging from medical education to military training and treatment. Hartholt is the Co-Lead of Bravemind, a clinical, interactive, virtual reality based exposure therapy tool used to assess and treat post-traumatic stress in service members. Other collaborations include online virtual humans for service members and medical students, and virtual role-players that help train US Army and Navy officers. Many of the ICT virtual human capabilities are freely available to the academic research community and US Military through the Virtual Human Toolkit ( Hartholt studied computer science at the University of Twente in the Netherlands where he got his Master’s degree. He worked at several IT companies, from large multi-nationals to early start-ups, before accepting a position at ICT.


Nancy King, Consultant with NewView Marketing: bridges that gap between client and agency with a keen understanding of the issues that confront today's marketing executive. Ms. King formed her own marketing consulting company, NewView Marketing in 2000 after years of successful client side experiences in a variety of different industries from toys to technology to food and entertainment. She has held the position of Vice President of Marketing at Mattel Toys, and among others. For more information, go to: Ms. King has taught advanced marketing at the University of Montana School of Business Administration and holds a BSBA in marketing and finance from Boston University and an MBA from Northeastern University.