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Pixar Animation Studios Co-Founder Chosen as a SIGGRAPH 2008 Featured Speaker

For Immediate Release
27 March 2008

For further information:
Brian Ban
+1.773.382.5706 fax

(Chicago, IL) - ACM SIGGRAPH announces Ed Catmull, a pioneer in the entertainment and film industry and co-founder of Pixar Animation Studios, as one of the featured speakers at SIGGRAPH 2008, the 35th International Conference and Exhibition on Computer Graphics and Interactive Techniques.

Catmull, President of Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios, has played a major role throughout the past 30 years in the invention of some of today's most fundamental computer graphics practices used widely across the motion picture industry. He is one of the original architects of the RenderMan rendering software system, which has been used to create blockbuster animated hits such as "Toy Story" and "Finding Nemo," as well as 44 of the last 47 Visual Effects nominations to the Academy Awards®.

"Dr. Catmull's innovations and leadership encompass his true passion for the computer graphics industry," stated Jacquelyn Martino, SIGGRAPH 2008 Conference Chair from IBM T.J. Watson Research Center. "A great deal of what is done today with animation and computer graphics in motion pictures would not be possible without his inventions and contributions. Given that SIGGRAPH is celebrating its 35th conference, we could think of no one individual that could represent the evolution of the industry better than Dr. Catmull."

Catmull has been honored with numerous industry awards for his contributions including four Academy Awards®; one in Technical Achievement, two in Scientific and Engineering, as well as one Academy Award of Merit. He is a Fellow of ACM, and has been involved with SIGGRAPH conferences for more than 30 years serving as chair of the Papers, Awards, and Technical Program committees. In 1993, he was awarded ACM's Steven A. Coons Award honoring his lifetime contributions to the computer graphics industry.

In addition to his own professional achievements, Catmull founded three of the most renowned computer graphics research centers in the world including the computer graphics laboratory at the New York Institute of Technology and the computer division of both Lucasfilm, Ltd. and Pixar Animation Studios.

Catmull received a bachelor's degree in physics, as well as a bachelor's and PhD in computer science from the University of Utah. He is also holds an honorary PhD in engineering from the University of Utah.

Based on overwhelming positive feedback provided after the switch from a single keynote speaker format to multiple featured speakers in 2007, SIGGRAPH will once again provide focused content by offering presentations from different prominent industry leaders and technology experts. Each featured speaker will provide key insights on the future of computer graphics and interactive techniques.


SIGGRAPH 2008 will bring an estimated 30,000 computer graphics and interactive technology professionals from six continents to Los Angeles, California, USA for the industry's most respected technical and creative programs focusing on research, science, art, animation, gaming, interactivity, education, and the web from Monday, 11 August through Friday, 15 August 2008 at the Los Angeles Convention Center. SIGGRAPH 2008 includes a three-day exhibition of products and services from the computer graphics and interactive marketplace from 12-14 August 2008. More than 250 international exhibiting companies are expected. Registration for the conference and exhibition is open to the public. More details

About ACM
The Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) sponsors SIGGRAPH 2008. ACM is an educational and scientific society uniting the world's computing educators, researchers, and professionals to inspire dialogue, share resources and address the field's challenges. ACM strengthens the profession's collective voice through strong leadership, promotion of the highest standards, and recognition of technical excellence. ACM supports the professional growth of its members by providing opportunities for life-long learning, career development, and professional networking.