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September 23, 2010
BEIJING, September 23, 2010 — A range of attendees from the media, sports, and entertainment industries were on hand as Covington & Burling LLP’s Beijing office co-hosted “The Big Event: The New Technologies of Media and Sports” symposium. The half-day event, held on September 21, focused on the use of cutting-edge production, broadcasting, exhibition, and home entertainment technologies to create new modalities for the audience, viewer, and consumer experience of media and sports events.
Paul Tagliabue, senior of counsel in Covington’s Washington, DC and New York offices, and former commissioner of the National Football League, delivered the keynote address. The panel discussions were moderated by Ellen Eliasoph, managing partner of Covington’s Beijing office, and Zhang Hong, producer at the CCTV-5 Sports Channel.
In the first panel discussion, which focused on broadcasting sporting events in ways that enhance and personalize the viewer experience, the participants engaged in a lively debate as to the viability of 3D broadcasting of sporting events, and discussed a variety of emerging broadcast, online and mobile technologies that are becoming available to fans both in the stadium and elsewhere.
In the panel on the convergence of story-telling and technology in relation to digital production and distribution, the participants focused on IMAX and other special format theater systems, the use of 3D and other cutting-edge filmmaking technologies, and the creation of location-based experiential entertainment such as theme park attractions and interactive museums. The panelists agreed that China is in the unique position of having a huge potential market for entertainment and media products, and low “entry costs” for market participants, given the lack of pre-existing facilities incorporating older technologies that will have to be replaced.
The symposium’s other speakers included Dr. Bai Qiang, founder and CEO of 3D China Ltd., Ma Guoli, former head of the Beijing Olympics Broadcasting Corporation and founder of the CCTV-5 Sports Channel; Collins Qian, Chief Operating Officer of NBA China; Masayuki Kozuka, Director, Corporate R&D, Panasonic Corporation; Jessie Chou, Vice President of IMAX Theatre Operations, Asia; Greg Lombardo, Creative Director of Brand Experiences at BRC Imagination Arts; and Sing Choong Foo, animation and special effects director (“Beowulf”; “Sophie’s Revenge”; “Spiderman” and “Spiderman 2”).
Along with Covington, 3D China Ltd. hosted the event. Chaoyang Museum of Urban Planning was a supporting sponsor.