New digital media research centre to benefit Canadian film, television and interactive media industries

    The Digital Media Centre for Real-time Production will lead to improved
    technology, more cost effective productions and better trained industry

    TORONTO, June 22 /CNW/ - Sheridan Institute of Technology and Advanced
Learning has been awarded a $2.3 million grant from the Natural Sciences and
Engineering Research Council (NSERC) of Canada's College and Community
Innovation Program to establish a unique new research centre for screen-based
industries. NSERC's funding follows an initial $300,000 grant from the Ontario
government's Ontario Media Development Corporation.
    The Digital Media Centre for Real-time Production takes a revolutionary
approach to research, technology development, education and innovation, and
will be located in the heart of the filmmaking industry in Toronto.
    The Centre's mission is to conduct world-class research into film,
digital cinema and high definition imaging technologies in a wide variety of
areas from capture to delivery and archiving. It was conceived and launched by
Sheridan and will operate in partnership with creative industries and three
levels of government.
    "The Digital Media Centre for Real-time Production will give Canadian
television, film and interactive media a competitive advantage through
research toward improved digital media production technologies and techniques,
more cost effective production processes and better trained industry
professionals," said Dr. Robert Turner, President and CEO, Sheridan Institute
of Technology and Advanced Learning. "We're grateful to the Natural Sciences
and Engineering Research Council of Canada for their support of what we
believe will be a keystone to the future success of filmmaking in Canada."
    Research partnerships have already been established with many key
companies and industry associations including Side Effects Software, C.O.R.E.
Digital Pictures, Panavision Canada, Autodesk Media and Entertainment,
Filmport, Directors Guild of Canada Ontario Branch, International
Cinematographers Guild (I.A.T.S.E. 667), and FilmOntario.
    "Our members have helped establish Ontario's entertainment and creative
industries as key pillars in the province's economic future," said Ron Haney,
CEO, Directors Guild of Canada Ontario Branch. "We're partnering with the
Centre to ensure these industries remain at the forefront in adoption of new
technologies and work processes, and create new jobs from technological
    "The Centre was created to establish a hub of collaboration and knowledge
sharing among film, television, and interactive media specialists, where
technology experts, craftspeople and creative content-producers can interact
in order to foster technological innovation, commercialization, and adoption
of new workflows," added John Helliker, Sheridan professor and Faculty lead at
the Centre.

    Education at the Digital Media Centre for Real-time Production

    Sheridan will also be adding a film and digital media studies component
to the Centre, making it the first such initiative to establish a permanent
educational campus within a studio complex in the heart of Canada's filmmaking
industry. This educational component will serve both full-time students and
industry professionals through facilitating technology and knowledge transfers
that foster improvements in creative collaboration and economic efficiency,
innovation, and commercialization.
    "The Digital Media Centre for Real-time Production is a truly exciting
venture," said Sandy McKean, Associate Dean, Sheridan Institute of Technology
and Advanced Learning. "It would be the first of its kind in Canada: a major
studio lot with students, teachers, filmmakers, producers, directors, writers,
actors, technical and production crews, animators, production houses and
suppliers working side-by-side to ensure a healthy and vibrant film making
industry in North America."
    By involving students in technology research and the development of new
production workflows, it will ensure that the next generation of digital media
professionals is both technologically adept and able to respond proactively to
the changing needs of industry.
    Sheridan has over three decades of expertise in live action film and
television production and award-winning visual effects and animation programs.
The Centre will be a platform without comparison in Canada and will help
Sheridan extend this excellence to the professional community at large.

For further information:

For further information: Media inquires: John Perenack,, (416) 238-2576

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