Below, an exciting list of renowned global story and experience creators who will be working as mentors and/or consultants in the StoryLabs.
This site also hosts an evolving mentor/participant online network that will allow our experience incubator labs mentors and participants to continue to engage in creating amazing new form storytelling.
In last name alphabetical order, the current core mentor team and founding StoryLabs mentors from US, UK, Canada and Australia
- BROOKE BURGESS
- MARISSA COOKE
- SEAN COLEMAN
- MATT COSTELLO
- KELLY CHAPMAN
- SOHAIL DAHDAL
- SIOBHAN O'FLYNN
- ANTHEA FOYER
- GUY GADNEY
- BRENNA HAJEK HUMPHREYS
- NATHANIEL HANSEN
- GARY HAYES
- DR RICHARD JAMES ALLEN
- EVAN JONES
- ALEX MAYHEW
- LAUREL PAPWORTH
- ROBERT PRATTEN
- NEIL RICHARDS
- BRIAN SETH HURST
- JIM SHOMOS
- MAURICE SUCKLING
- DAVID VARELA
- TONY WALSH
- EMMA WESTECOTT
- TIMOTHY WILDE
- JENNIFER WILSON
- TIM WRIGHT
Canadian (Vancouver) mentor: Innovation, Transmedia and Community – Sep 2010
After serving in creative and production capacities for software giant Electronic Arts Canada, Brooke went on to write the acclaimed and award-winning “motion comic‟ saga Broken Saints. Seen by over 6 million viewers worldwide at www.brokensaints.com, the groundbreaking 12-hour/24-part epic is considered by many to be a revolution in modern storytelling with its unique fusion of graphic novel style, haunting music and effects, and mature modern themes.
Following the celebrated saga’s 90min finale in the summer of 2003, a pitch to Telefilm Canada for an ambitious DVD upgrade of the series was one of a special few chosen to move into production. Completed with a talented team of artists, engineers, and voice talent (on schedule and under budget) in Fall 2004, the Broken Saints 4-Disc DVD Special Edition went on to garner even more critical praise, rabid fan support, and international distribution deals with Twentieth Century Fox Home Video (2006), niche broadcasters (ongoing), and SONY’s digital services (2007).
Australian (Melbourne) mentor: Transmedia, Advertising, Community and Mobile Media – Aug 2010
Marissa has worked extensively in television, cross-platform entertainment and digital media over the past 10 years as a creative strategist, experience designer and writer across a diverse range of innovative, award-winning cross-media projects. As the cross-platform content producer and lead interactive writer for Australia’s first interactive television series , Fat Cow Motel (ABC TV, Hoodlum Active), Marissa was responsible for developing an immersive, cross-platform game and producing interactive content across web, iTV, email, mobile and dial-up channels that delivered unprecedented results for the ABC becoming the most visited TV website ever for ABC Online. Marissa also worked on an innovative pre-broadcast viral media campaign delivered via print, radio, email, SMS and web. Marissa won the inaugural Australian Writers’ Guild Interactive Media Award in 2005 for her work on Fat Cow Motel. Marissa was Co-Writer and Interactive Producer for the Yahoo! 7 interactive drama series PS Trixi – a world-first 12 episode drama series delivered across web, Instant Messenger, email, mobile and video platforms, produced by Hoodlum Active.
In 2006, Marissa was the creative strategist and interactive experience designer for Emmerdale Murder, an interactive, cross-platform channel and narrative-based game produced by Hoodlum Active & iTV UK for the hugely popular UK television series, Emmerdale. Emmerdale Online won the prestigious Best Drama Category in the MIPCOM Mobile, Internet and CrossMedia TV Awards, and was a 2008 Interactive Emmy Award nominee in the Best TV Service category. Marissa was a winner in the 2008 MIPTV Content 360 pitching competition in Cannes – winning a partnership deal with Ogilvy Entertainment in the United States for her 360 degree cause-related marketing concept for American Express.
Marissa was also a scriptwriter on the AFI and New York Festival’s award-winning first series of the Foxtel drama series Love My Way (Southern Star), as well as the Australian-German co-production Blue Water High (Southern Star) and the SBSTV Mockumentary Series, S(truth). Marissa was also a scriptwriter for the third series of Ambience Entertainment children’s’ animation series Erky Perky (Network 7) and is currently developing a TV drama series with Ish Media and a narrative comedy series with KCDC Productions which recently received development funding from Screen Australia.
Marissa recently worked as a scriptwriter for an innovative interactive drama series and alternate reality experience, Bluebird AR, produced by ABC TV as well as storylining/development for a cross-platform TV series in development with Studio Ish. Marissa also continues to consult to a range of digital agencies including the Royals, Deepend andTribal DDB as a social media strategist and specialist digital writer across clients including Fitness First, RTA, Continental, Volkswagen, NIKE, Gatorade and McDonalds, three of which were awarded Gold Medals at the prestigious Montruex International Advertising & Multimedia Festival in 2006 & 2007.
UK (London) mentor: Transmedia, Games, Innovation, Ad Lab, Mobile Media and Community – Sep 2010
Having begun his career with Douglas Adam’s company The Digital Village helping to create The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy – Online Edition (h2g2.com), Sean moved to Flextech Television (now Virgin Media Television) to act as producer of troubletv.co.uk. He went on to produce and later executive produce the interactive programme elements of Most Haunted and Most Haunted Live for Living TV, and four seasons of the teenage reality show Cruel Summer for Trouble TV.
Recently, Sean spent two years as Executive Producer at Endemol UK’s Digital Studios, where he created and produced a 13-brand ad-funded reality show The Gap Year for bebo.com, and wrote and produced the Emmy-nominated and Webby Award winning Kirill for MSN UK. Sean is also the writer and Exec. Producer of the multi-award winning drama series Cell for O2 on mobile, and Sony Pictures (crackle.com) and Fox International for global online. Sean acted as writer and editor on a game series for Nintendo for The Mustard Corporation, and is currently writing and producing Northern Quarter - a series due for online and terrestrial broadcast in 2011 / 2012.
Sean founded Red Kingdom Ltd in 2009 as a cross-platform production company. They are currently developing two interactive teen shows for UK broadcasters, and are producing Vertica – an ad-funded web drama for Tomboy Films. Sean has been a lab mentor and speaker on PALlabs, Children’s Media Conference, Crossover Labs and has delivered lectures for the National Writers Association, Royal Holloway University, Westminster University and York University. He also runs a one-day workshop entitled Cross-Platform Storytelling for the Indie Training Fund in London.
US FOUNDING mentor (NY, LA & London): Transmedia, Games, Ad Lab, Mobile Media and Innovation – Jul 2010
Matt Costello is based in New York, London and LA and has written ground-breaking and award-winning novels, games, and television. Time Magazine said of Doom 3, which he scripted, “The story is delivered with unusual art.” He wrote the groundbreaking Pirates of the Caribbean 3 game across all platforms. Rage, a 2011 release from id Software which Matt worked on, won the most Game Critics Awards at this year’s E3, including “˜Best Console Game’.Just Cause, co-written with Storylab founder Neil Richards for Eidos, debuted as the #1 game for Xbox 360 in the UK and was named “Best Adventure Game” at the 2006 E3.
His current projects include a major game for the revolutionary Nintendo 3DS. Other notable games include: Hercules, for Disney, The Dark Half, for MGM, Derelict, for The Syfy Channel, The Clue Chronicles for Hasbro, Barbie’s Riding Adventure for Mattel, Clifford’s Reading” for Scholastic, Starsky & Hutch for Empire, and The Italian Job for Eidos. Matt also specialises in the kid’s genre and has created many award-winning games for children.
He co-created one of the first major experiments in “˜two-way TV’, called ZoogDisney, branded as “˜TV you do’. For two years the ZoogDisney weekend bloc re-shaped the Disney channel, bringing it squarely into the interactive and “˜tweens world. He has written a kids book series for Scholastic , The Kids of Einstein Elementary which blends adventure and math and he also scripted episodes of the award-winning PBS animated series, Cyberchase. Other games include the landmark Aladdin’s Mathquest with math expert Marilyn Burns for Disney, as well as the multi-award winning A Cartoon History of the Universe (Putnam). His novel Beneath Still Waters was filmed and released by LionsGate and Penguin/Putnam published his latest suspense novel, Nowhere. His new novel,Vacation, will be published by St. Martin’s Press in 2011.
Australian (Brisbane) mentor: Transmedia and Innovation – Aug 2010
Kelly created digital content company KCDC in 2008 after successfully producing international award-winning multi-platform projects Emmerdale Online Channel, Spooks Interactive and Find 815 for Hoodlum; and a stint in drama & documentary development with New Holland Pictures. She has worked in the industry in various roles for 20 years. Experienced across film, television, broadband and mobile entertainment, Kelly’s work has received prestigious international recognition and is marked by originality, diversity and high production quality.
KCDC is currently developing a handful of original film, TV and cross-platform projects and collaborates with producers of traditional media, to extend their properties into digital spaces. Kelly produced Louise Alston’s feature film Jucy, due for release in late 2010. http://kellychapman.com.au – http://kcdc.com.au – http://kellychapman.wordpress.com
Australian (Sydney) mentor: Transmedia and Community – Aug 2010
Sohail Dahdal is the creative force behind Minosophy specializing in multi-platform transmedia content creation. Sohail is also a filmmaker with string interest in social change. His credits include the award-winning online documentaries First Australians and Long Journey, Young Lives. His innovative work and passion for story over form has established him as a leading force in bridging the gap between emerging technologies and traditional media, creating internationally acclaimed durable projects.
Canadian FOUNDING (Toronto) mentor: Innovation, Transmedia and Community – Aug 2010
Siobhan O’Flynn has been on faculty with CFC Media Lab since 2001 advising on digital & interactive storytelling across media in over 70 projects, including screen-based works, in situ & social media installations, online social networking sites, cross-platform projects, interactive short films, ARGs and interactive graphic novels. In 2006/07 she was the narrative design consultant on Late Fragment, a feature film/dvd produced by the CFC & NFB that screened at Cannes in 2008 as part of the Future of Cinema Salon. Siobhan has mentored for the Digital Development Lab (CBC/BC Film/New Media BC) 2008 & 2009 and Melting Silos (NFB/SFU Praxis), & given numerous workshops on digital storytelling for a variety of audiences (traditional to digital).
This past year’s talks have addressed strategies for trans/crossmedia development, digital storytelling, & ‘Disruptive innovations in a digital world,’ amongst other topics. As an instructor in the Canadian Studies Program at University of Toronto, Siobhan’s teaching focuses on how artistic works & practices across media engage with political, social & cultural concerns. Her academic research extends in a number of areas: the function, design, & experience of narrative in interactive environments; foresighting emergent trends in digital storytelling & entertainment in a Web 2.0/3.0 world; the social benefit of interactive art on community in the context of arts festivals such as Toronto’s Luminato & Nuit Blanche.
Canadian mentor: Innovation, Transmedia and Community – Sep 2010
Anthea is Founder & Director of The Labs, a multiplatform production and consulting firm based in Toronto, Canada. She has been creating, consulting on and educating others about interactive narrative projects for the past ten years.
Anthea often takes on innovative projects on a variety of platforms. She is currently the creative director for The Conversation, an interactive companion project to Sarah Polley’s new feature film Take This Waltz. This multiplatform project bridges a variety of platforms in order to create an audience for the film’s release next year. She is also working on Time Tremors, a transmedia story for preteens, which is a co-production with Xenophile Media and currently in development. Her previous projects include producing creative projects for the Vancouver Olympics, Nuit Blanche, and the Images Festival. She led the Interactive Arts & Entertainment Program at the Canadian Film Centre for 4 years and continues to facilitate and develop innovative workshops with partners such as nextMEDIA, CBC, Entertainment Master Class, Banff World Television Festival, AFI, Crossover Labs.
Anthea has consulted on a wide range of critically acclaimed projects including graphic novels, online narratives, wearables, interactive installations, participatory theatre, live events, multiplatform experiences and tv and film convergence projects for clients such as CTV, CFC, Popsandbox, The Theatre Centre, and Praxis Theatre. 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. This includes SXSW, NXNE, IN, World Wide Short Film Festival, and the Ottawa International Animation Festival.
Australian (Sydney) mentor: Transmedia – Aug 2010
Guy has been at the forefront of innovation in digital media since the early nineties. He produced and directed one of the first interactive fiction projects for Penguin Books in 1996, and followed that with two other interactive fiction projects that he wrote and directed in 1999. At his time, he also produced the massively multiplayer game, Diaspora, including writing over 80 missions for the game. As a founding Director of The Project Factory, Guy is working on a number of transmedia projects, bringing to life engaging storylines and characters on mobile and internet platforms. He is a passionate believer in digital media as a powerful storytelling platform, and also in new and emerging business models that can build commercially sustainable projects from great ideas.
BRENNA HAJEK HUMPHREYS
US (LA) mentor: Ad Lab, Transmedia, Mobile and Community, Innovation, Games – Aug 2010
Brenna is a senior copywriter at RPA where she creates innovative cross-media advertising solutions for clients including Honda, Proactiv, La-Z-Boy, and others. Her most recent project is the Dream The Impossible Documentary Series, a completely online cinematic experience with an accompanying mobile application. Prior to RPA, she worked for Web consulting firm USWeb/marchFIRST and various entertainment entities including Sony and Warner Music Group. Brenna holds a B.F.A. in Drama from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, and is currently pursuing her Master of Fine Arts in Creative Fiction at Antioch University, Los Angeles.
She is member of the Writers Guild of America Videogame Writers Caucus, Screen Actor’s Guild, and the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. As a mentor for the American Film Institute’s Digital Content Lab for over a decade, she helped to break new ground in digital content for entertainment properties including Arli$$, Sesame Street, The L Word and Top Chef. She is dedicated to advancing the art of storytelling through the use of emerging technologies.
US (LA) mentor: Ad Lab, Transmedia, Community & Innovation – Sep 2010
A co-founder of The Socializers Nathaniel is a 11-year veteran of the Internet and has packaged his technology, marketing, and people skills to create sales-accelerating campaigns for scores of successful businesses. He connects like-minded people and creates opportunity on a global level. He holds a Masters in Mythological Studies/Archetypal Psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute and currently splits his time between Athens, Greece and Montecito, California.
Applying archetypal themes to marketing campaigns is one of his favorite activities. During his stay in the Balkans, he has consulted to the likes of Unilever, Sarantis, Mercedes, Champion Apparel, LUNA lingerie, LOUX Juice, Illy, Coca-Cola and Sony-Ericsson. In his latest speaking engagement, he spoke at the Social Business Summit in London on “The Anatomy of a Social Media Proposal” and “Postcards from the Future of Social Business: How Social Business Technology Transformed Athens into the New Monaco”.
Nathaniel also serves as Director of International Business Development for Lorrie Thomas at Web Marketing Therapy. He is currently working in multiple continents on a variety of enterprise-level accounts and media projects. His primary personal interests include archetypes, world mythology, Jungian psychology, and the living nature of the social fabric of the internet, humanity’s first collective and multi-dimensional journal.
Australian FOUNDING mentor (Sydney): Transmedia, Games, Innovation, Ad Lab, Mobile and Community – Jun 2010
Now a Distinguished Talent Permanent Resident in Australia Gary has been a pioneering senior ‘networked media’ creator since 1994, leading BBC iTV & broadband development for 8 years, then iTV producer in the US, directed innovation lab LAMP for 5 years and for last 4 years delivering commercial Augmented & Alternate Reality productions and Social Virtual Worlds. He also lectures & designs courses in Transmedia & Multi Platform at AFTRS, MetroScreen & other institutions. Now the key founding mentor behind StoryLabs.
For the past 4 years Gary has been the CCO of MUVEDesign (his virtual, augmented & alternate reality development company) & two years as one of the heads of The Project Factory, a Multi Platform Agency. After many years working in the UK’s Music and Multimedia industry Gary joined the BBC from 95-04 in London as a Senior Development Producer/Manager and became a thought leader in the BBC’s development of the internet, interactive TV and emerging platforms where he devised and/or produced a range of social iTV services such as iTop of the Pops, XCreatures, Digital Text, The Troubles, Walking with Beasts, Musical Nomad, Travel Show, The Navigator and many more.
He was line producer on the enhanced L Word, part of AFI’s digital content labs and also iTV consultant on various network TV in the US in 2004. As CCO of MUVEDesign (and previously with UK based Project Factory) he has been pioneering alternate, augmented & virtual world creation and immersive & organic story experiences for TV/Film, Education, Business & Performance – recently building and devising commercial and game-like services for Telstra, ABC, MultiMedia Victoria, Deakin University, AFTRS, Physical TV and several US and UK companies.
He is also a keynote speaker, consultant producer in social & networked media to the TV, Film and Arts industries and has presented at over 450 conferences on subjects ranging from TransMedia, Social TV, Augmented Reality, Serious Games, Personalization, Brands and Education in Virtual Worlds, Media Futures and Interactive Art and Music amoungst others and has been an International Interactive Emmy juror for the past few years.
He runs a top Power150 global media/marketing blog at personalizemedia.com and 11 other diverse media sites – linked from the garyphayes.com hub. As a published music producer, composer and performer some of his works can be subscribed free via iTunes.
DR RICHARD JAMES ALLEN
Australian mentor (Sydney): Transmedia, Innovation, Mobile and Community – Sep 2010
As a creator, collaborator, mentor and teacher, Dr Richard James Allen is interested in how different media platforms create the possibility for different kinds of stories and different processes of storytelling. He has combined a unique international career as a writer, filmmaker, choreographer and performer, with work screened, broadcast, published, or performed in thirty countries, and nominated for or winning prizes in filmmaking, screenwriting, playwriting, new media, poetry, dance and scholarship. His work, often in collaboration with Karen Pearlman, his partner at The Physical TV Company, “points the way to the possibilities that abound when collaboration occurs across forms and new technologies are integrated into the totality of the vision” (Hunter Cordaiy, RealTime). It has ranged across new media platforms such as Second Life, mobile phones, machinima, mixed reality, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube; more traditional screen media of film and television; as well as live performance forms from proscenium arch theatre to site specific works to performance poetry. He is also the author of a series of highly innovative published books of fiction, poetry and performance texts and an award-winning doctoral thesis. From theatre on moving trains to dance on floating stages to richly imagined surreal fantasy film worlds to 3D train stations floating in digital clouds, Richard has been interested in the creative combustion that takes place when imagination meets technology to create unique and enlivening storytelling.
Transmedia highlights include: Entanglement Theory (Webpage, Trailer) – A ‘mixed reality’ dance film, a mash-up of Yogic and Buddhist spiritual philosophy and Quantum Physics. Created in collaboration with Karen Pearlman and Gary Hayes, and supported by Australia Council for the Arts Inter-Arts Board. “New vitality…absorbing” (The New York Times). Over twenty international screenings and scheduled for broadcast on ABC TV. Thursday’s Fictions (Website, Trailer, Documentary) – A unique multimodal production, a fantastical parable about reincarnation which evolved over almost twenty years to become a cross media work for the stage, the page, cinema and television screens, the 3D online immersive and interactive story world of Second Life and machinima. Created in collaboration with Gary Hayes, Karen Pearlman and others. Supported by Australia Council for the Arts Story of the Future Project and AFTRS LAMP. “No less than a work of genius” (Eyeforfilm). Multiple awards including an Atom Award. Over twenty international screenings and broadcast on ABC TV. The Kamikaze Mind (Website, ABC Radio National Interview.) – A multi-modal, cross platform project dancing across the pages of books, the screens of mobile phones and websites, through 3D online interactive immersive worlds, across the airwaves on radio, downloadable via podcast, and on the stages of live reading venues, festivals and lecture theatres. Created in collaboration with Karen Pearlman and supported by the Australia Council for the Arts Literature Board, Metro Screen metro:mobility, TigerSpike and m.Net Corporation. “A poetic take on what wisdom the universe might spit out after a black hole has gobbled an astronaut” (The Australian). Winner of the Point of Life Gold Award of Excellence. Currently in development: More Lies, a highly referential black comedy feature film, adapted from the Griffin Award for New Australian Playwriting shortlisted play, and The Jiva Project, a transmedia spiritual work, supported by mega and the Australia Council for the Arts, and recently workshopped in Metro Screen’s Transmedia Masterclass. (Join Facebook Group.) For more information: Visit Physical TV Website or emailPhysicalTV@bigpond.com.
Canadian (Toronto) mentor: Transmedia, Games, Innovation, Ad Lab, Mobile and Community – Sep 2010
Stitch Media partner Evan Jones, is a two-time Emmy Award® winner whose innovative work on interactive content for primetime television, radio, web, mobile and games have established him as a pioneer in new genres of Alternate Reality Games, Locative Media and Interactive Documentary.
His work was recognized as one of the ‘Top 10 New Media Groundbreakers’ according to the Bell Broadcast & New Media Fund. Evan’s international clients include Microsoft, Disney, FOX, CBC, Bell, Discovery and The Movie Network.
He has taught ‘Rich Media Production’, ‘Transmedia Storytelling’ and ‘Extending TV Drama Experiences’ around the world at the Canadian Film Centre, the Australian Film, Television & Radio School and the University of Southern California with Dr. Henry Jenkins.
Canadian (Toronto) mentor: Transmedia, Games, Mobile and Community – Sep 2010
Over the past 15 years, Alex has worked across multiple media, using each channel to their strength with the intent of creating compelling and successful projects and products.
His work has largely been in the area of interactivity and game design, as well as visual and concept development, embracing the benefits of a transmedia approach. From the multi award winning Ceremony of Innocence to Beethoven’s Hair, to Time Tremors, to his work with MIT and the Royal Shakespeare Company, he believes there is much potential in exploring a property over a number of different media channels including web, mobile, TV, game, books, theatre, film and performance.
In recent years he has also turned his attention to creating applications that embrace strong social media elements and also creating and combining mobile, content management, communication, mobile and location based experiences. Building on these interests, he co-founded Infinity Labs with Peter Gabriel in 2007, becoming co- share holder and creative director of theMemory.com and Gabble. From there, he became excited to see how creativity can be used to trigger commerce; especially in an environment where consumers are increasingly used to getting their content for free.
In this transmedia space he has built a worldwide reputation for making magical and memorable interactive experiences. He has been asked to talk and present his work at countless international conferences, festivals, companies, universities and research institutions. His work has been exhibited, taught and written about both by press and academic institutions around the world.
He now resides in Toronto Canada. From there he developing a new set of projects and has started The Labs, a creative consultancy that works numerous industries in the area of transmedia.
Australian (Sydney) mentor: Community, Ad Lab and Games – Aug 2010
Laurel is Managing Director of The Community Crew (which manages large online communities) and LaurelPapworth.com speaking, training and consulting in Social Media and in 2010 was named Head of the Social Media Industry by Marketing Magazine. She has been creating and managing online communities for over 20 years, including Social TV (Big Brother, Idol and Junior Masterchef), Online Games (including Ultima Online) and 1980s communities (Usenet and IRC). Laurel has developed and facilitated Social Media Strategies with Sony Australasia (Film & Games), ABC TV and Radio, Channel 10, Screen Australia, SBS TV, Singapore Government, Middle East Broadcasting (Saudi Arabia), Westpac and PR and Marketing Agencies in Australia and Asia.
Laurel has a popular iTunes podcast called Social Media Business and has written and published articles and books on social media revenue and monetization. Her site LaurelPapworth.com is number 5 in Australia (B&T Magazine) and is in the Top 150 Media/Marketing blogs in the world according to global AdAge USA. Laurel has taught social media marketing courses since 2005, consulting on blog, Facebook and Twitter courses to entertainment, business and Government around the world, as well as keynoting at international conferences on social media. Laurel also teaches social media courses at the University of Sydney, Australian Film Television and Radio School and Metro Screen.
US (San Francisco) mentor: Transmedia and Community – Aug 2010
Robert Pratten is an experienced marketing consultant and transmedia producer. Before the Internet boom and crash of ’99 he was an internationally recognized expert in the field of Intelligent Networks having advised clients such as Ericsson, Lucent, Telcordia and others on international pricing, positioning and market entry strategies. Since that time he trained at the London Film School and has written, produced and directed two award-winning, critically acclaimed feature films – London Voodooand Mindflesh.
He has worked as Chief Marketing Officer for a user-generated viral video start-up and continues to advise media tech start-ups in the areas of business and marketing planning, market entry strategy, pricing, product development and positioning. Robert’s experience uniquely places him at the intersection of entertainment, social media and telecoms where he has established himself as a thought-leader in the field of transmedia storytelling through major contributions to the evolving field.
He works with independent producers, writers and directors advising them on cross-platform storytelling, marketing and distribution. He is currently working on LowLifes, an original transmedia entertainment property with a social activism component and is the founder of Transmedia Storyteller a subscription-based service for cross-platform audience engagement. Robert’s exploits are usually documented at www.zenfilms.com
UK FOUNDING mentor (London): Transmedia, Games, Innovation, Ad Lab and Community – Jul 2010
Neil Richards originally worked in movies and television. He has story-exec, writer and producer credits for BBC, ITV and Channel 4 in drama, children’s and entertainment – and continues to write for television. Since co-writing Starship Titanic with Douglas Adams in the mid-90′s he has worked increasingly in interactive media, scripting children’s iTV, education, broadband and platform games, earning three recent BAFTA nominations, an IGDA Writing Excellence nomination and a Writers’ Guild nomination for his scripts.
He has written more than 20 game scripts, including such popular titles as Driver, Just Cause (1 & 2), Broken Sword, Da Vinci Code etc. He is a passionate devotee of the lab process, having mentored for BBC iTV and broadband workshops, for PAL (Media Programme), PILOTS (Media Programme) PYGMALION (Media Programme/Paris/Berlin Film Schools), the Akademie für Kindermedien in Erfurt, and Crossover Labs. He was one-time senior lecturer in Screenwriting at Bournemouth University. He has also consulted for the BBC as a producer in Creative Development, devising and running Creative/Interactive Labs across the BBC.
BRIAN SETH HURST
US (LA, NY) mentor: Ad Lab, Transmedia, Mobile and Community, Innovation, Games – Jul 2010
Brian Seth Hurst is CEO of The Opportunity Management Company, a strategic consultancy that is driving the next generation of entertainment. Referred to as “the father of cross platform”, Hurst coined the term in 1998 as MD of Convergent Media at Pittard Sullivan, where he launched TV Guide as the first ever cross platform brand. Hurst’s credo since then, “go to where your audience lives” continues to transform the relationship of audiences to brands and programming. TOMC has assisted broadcast clients and content rights holders in extending their programming and building communities on new platforms.
The company has a rich practice in the building of “cross and transmedia ecosystems” including Alternate Reality Games and the burgeoning field of Augmented Reality. Clients have included: Showtime, Lifetime, SVT (Swedish Pubic Television), New Zealand Trade & Enterprise, NBCUniversal, Intel, and AOL as well as successful start-ups including Nixle and Paltalk. Hurst is at work on Tim Kring’s (creator of Heroes) next project the “Conspiracy For Good” for which he created the terms “Social Benefit Storytelling” and “Social Benefit Marketing” to describe this new entertainment genre and the project’s impact.
Hurst, well known for his dedication and service to the industry, spent 10 years on the Board of Governors of the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences building the Primetime Emmy® Brand Strategy and serving in various positions including Second vice Chair. He served 3 terms on the National Board of the Producers Guild of America. Previously, he served two terms as Chairman of the Producers Guild of America New Media Council while simultaneously serving on the Television Academy’s Board representing Interactive Media. Recipient of an Interactive TV Today [itvt] Award for Leadership in Interactive Television, he has been profiled in Emmymagazine one of the 10 media executives in the business leading the industry’s digital drive and was named two years running to the Hollywood Reporter/PGA Digital 50.
Hurst was appointed Global Digital Ambassador for the International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences in 2009. A well regarded authority on the subject of emerging entertainment, cross media production and social media, Hurst has authored articles for Multichannel News and Produced By magazine amongst others, and was contributing author to the book “They Say They Want A Revolution: What Marketers Need to Know As Consumers Take Control”. He is a regular panelist and keynote speaker at conferences including NATPE, SXSW, NAB, CES, Digital Hollywood, MIPTV and many international events. He also has addressed private broadcaster gatherings in South Africa, Norway, Sweden, Australia, New Zealand, France and the United Kingdom briefing them as to trends in new technologies, alternative distribution and audience behavior. Hurst manages award winning TommyBoy Recording artist Matt Alber (www.mattalber.com) He is also co-author with Olivia Newton-John of Simon and Schuster’s bestselling children’s book “A Pig Tale”.
Australian (Melbourne) mentor: Transmedia, Innovation and Mobile Media – Aug 2010
Jim is a writer/producer across feature films, TV and digital media. In 2005 he created, co-produced and co-wrote Forget the Rules – the comedy/drama series which won Best Interactive Format Award, MIPCOM (Cannes) 2006. FTR was the first comedy/drama series in the world to broadcast all episodes on TV, broadband and mobiles (39 x 3min). He is a co-winner of the Film Victoria Greg Tepper Award 2007 and nominated for a 2008 AWGIE for his writing on FTR2 (2007, 30x3min).
In 2009 Jim produced another world-first digital media series,Mordy Koots (10x4min), www.mordykoots.com Created by Clayton Jacobson (director of feature film hit Kenny) and starring Shane Jacobson (Kenny, Charlie & Boots). In June 2010, Jim was listed at #30 in Encore Magazine’s Australian Film & TV “Power 50″ list. Jim is a regular mentor at digital media workshops across Australia and has been an official speaker at MIPCOM 2007, MIPTV 2008 & 2009 in Cannes. He is a member of the Australian Writers Guild and the Victorian Chapter Head of SPAA (Screen Producers Association Australia). Jim also has a passion for Arsenal, Latin dancing and blueberry muffins”
UK (London) mentor: Games, Innovation, Transmedia – Aug 2010
Maurice Suckling is a games writer with over 20 published games to his name, from the original Driver to Stuntman and Planet 51. He’s a co-founder of The Mustard Corporation. He’s also a voice director and producer having overseen sessions for the likes of the Wii Fit series and Bioshock 2 and is co-founder of Mana Sound. He’s worked as a lab mentor for the BBC, ITV, Ubisoft, Square Enix and as a specialist interactive narrative mentor for Wonderlab in London. He holds a PhD in Creative Writing from Newcastle University and has recently established Stories Interactive to tease away at the experimental end of the fusion between games and storytelling.
UK mentor (London): Transmedia, Games, Innovation, Mobile Media, Ad Lab and Community – Sep 2010
David is a writer and producer who works across a huge range of media – sometimes all at once. He is currently producing and writing a global ARG sponsored by Reebok and starring Formula 1 driver Lewis Hamilton. Lewis Hamilton: Secret Life is running in nine languages for eight months, with live events staged in Africa, Europe, the Middle East and Asia.
Prior to that, David wrote and produced the world’s first console-based ARG, Xi. Based in Sony’s virtual world PlayStation Home, the adventure spilled out across the web and into the real world too, attracting over 600,000 players.
David’s background is as an award-winning writer for theatre, radio and advertising. It was as a writer that he first got into transmedia back in 2005, working as in-house writer on the influential ARG Perplex City for 18 months. He was heavily involved in the adventurous crossover between Perplex City and BBC Radio 1 known asFrozen Indigo Angel.
His stageplays have been performed at the ICA, the Royal Court, Hampstead Theatre and RADA, and his short films have premiered in Leicester Square and been broadcast on ITV. He has also written several one-off dramas for BBC Radio 4 and BBC7.
Canadian FOUNDING mentor (Toronto): Transmedia, Games, Innovation and Community – Jul 2010
Tony Walsh is a multi-disciplined senior creative specializing in digital games. He has helped plan and execute Web and cross-platform projects since the early 1990s. Internationally-noted as a thought-leader in the area of games and game-culture, Walsh produces and directs game projects through his Toronto-based production company, Phantom Compass. As founding director of Phantom Compass, Walsh leads the company in providing products and services to broadcasters and media producers in Canada, the US and UK.
Since 2008, he has co-written the interactive component of BBC Three series “Spooks: Code 9,” created an Alternate Reality Game in support of Hollywood B-movie “Bangkok Dangerous” and co-produced a suite of games for a CBC TV series. He is currently at work on several educational games on such topics as Greek drama, civic engagement, and the Klondike Gold Rush. Walsh shares his experience with organizations and institutions around the world. He has developed and taught game design courses for George Brown College and Centennial College in Canada. He has coached film, television, and interactive producers for the CBC (Canada), AFTRS (Australia), and for BAVC (USA).
He is a professional associate of AFTRS, a “mastermind” for the Interactive/Media/Design department of the Royal Academy of Art (The Hague, the Netherlands) and has been an advisory board member of Screenburn at SXSW (USA). Walsh appeared in the 2008 game culture documentary “Second Skin,” is an occasional media commentator, and has been cited in such publications as Wired, Discover, Utne, and the Harvard Business Review. He has presented to international audiences on such topics as the intersection of sex and gaming, the role of marketing in virtual worlds, and documentary games.
Canadian mentor (Toronto): Transmedia, Games and Community – Sep 2010
Emma is Assistant Professor in Game Design at the Ontario College of Art & Design (OCAD) University in Toronto, Canada (http://www.ocad.ca). She has worked in the game industry for over 17 years: in development, research and the academy. She achieved international recognition for working closely with Douglas Adams as producer for the best-selling CD-ROM Adventure Game, Starship Titanic (1998, Simon & Schuster). Since then, Emma has built up a worldwide reputation for developing original as well as popular game projects.
Emma has been invited to present her work at many prestigious venues including BAFTA, the Tate, the Banff Centre and DIGRA (http://www.digra.org). Between 2001-4, Emma directed the zerogame studio for The Interactive Institute (http://www.tii.se) in Sweden, where an impressive body of applied research was created under her leadership. More recently she has been Games Research Fellow at NSAMD, UWN where she ran both Synergy (http://synergy.newport.ac.uk) and organized 2007’s Women in Games conference (http://www.womeningames.com).
Australian (Sydney) mentor: Transmedia, Games, Innovation, Ad Labs, Community and Mobile Media – Aug 2010
A product of comic books, educated through television and film, entertained with role playing games and reared on Oscar Wilde. Timothy began storytelling to be on Star Trek, pursuing acting for ten years while devising and performing theatre restaurant to pay the rent. He fell in love with the art of writing and graduated from AFTRS with a Masters in writing film, television and new media. Timothy now gets paid to be a geek.
Writing for the production company Hoodlum, Timothy created interactive transmedia dramas and screenplays for popular international films and television series including the Emmy award winning, BAFTA nominated “Primeval Evolved”. He has written for famous Australian series, penned numerous short films that have been accepted to international film festivals including Cannes, St Tropez, Palm Springs and written computer games for Sony and Nintendo with The Mustard Corporation. In 2010 Timothy co-founded Breathe Films where he has an interactive online sitcom, two television series, a feature film and graphic novel in development.
Australian (Sydney) mentor: Transmedia, Mobile Media, Innovation, Games, Community and Mobile Media – Aug 2010
Jennifer Wilson is a Director of The Project Factory – a multiplatform media company. She is fascinated by the intersection of creative concepts, their technical implementation and the commercial realities that underpins these. Beyond cross-platform – the intelligent exploration of how to generate engagement on the third and fourth screens through social, play, story, sharing and interactivity. She is passionate about mobile (ubiquity); semantic web (understanding), social media (connection) and the need to find engagement at the heart of every interaction.
Jennifer teaches courses in multiplatform, trans- and convergent media. She works with emerging leaders across all forms of media to help them understand the connected, networked world. She has authored books and papers aimed at writers and film makers covering key concepts, business models, rights issues and new ways of thinking about copyright. Jennifer is a member of SPAA, on the board of AIMIA and chairs the Mobile Industry Group.
UK mentor (London): Transmedia, Games, Innovation, Mobile Media and Community – Sep 2010
Tim Wright is a digital writer, an interactive producer and a director of XPT Ltd. His writing credits include two BAFTA-winning interactive projects: the comedy self help disk ‘Mind Gym’ and web & email drama ‘Online Caroline’. He also co-developed, devised and scripted the BAFTA nominated science-learning Web drama ‘Planet Jemma’ and BAFTA nominated online holiday farce ‘Mount Kristos’.
In 2004/5, he created the popular collaborative web fiction and Sony Award-nominated BBC Radio 4 play ‘In Search of Oldton’, pioneering the use of user generated content within a narrative fiction format. He has continued his relationship with Radio 4 contributing to a radical overhaul of Today’s website, whilst writing two further Afternoon Plays that involve online audience participation (‘Say What You Want To Hear’).
The web element of the popular public art project ‘The Telectroscope’ was co-developed and written by Tim. He was the lead writer of the RSC’s recent Twitter drama ‘Such Tweet Sorrow’ – and in 2009 he completed ‘Kidmapped!’, an experiment in literary blogumentary, involving a 240-mile walk across Scotland and the use of geolocation and mobile media tools.