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RECENT HIRINGS THROUGHOUT THE INDUSTRY

November 18, 2009
RECENT HIRINGS THROUGHOUT THE INDUSTRY Beast Editorial in Chicago has appointed Melissa Thornley executive producer. She brings experience in both the creative and business sides of the industry. Previously, Thornley ran her own sales and representation company, and offered independent corporate coaching. Prior to that, she spent 12 years with The Whitehouse Post, where she served as managing director of all four of the company's offices.

Alan Ett Create Group (AECG) in Los Angeles has appointed Charley Brooks vice president of marketing, in charge of coordinating, streamlining and enhancing all of the marketing efforts for AECG companies. AECG offers music composition, scoring, audio post, catalog administration and television production. Its companies include the Opus 1 Music Library and Media City Sound.
Brooks is a seasoned film production executive and brand strategist. She formerly served as the West Coast rep for career development & industry relations for McNally Smith College of Music. She was also an executive at boutique subtitling studio Visual Sound. And as an in-house production manager at Live Entertainment, Brooks was part of a four-person physical production department responsible for shepherding no less 25 feature films and direct-to-video projects.

Digital Vision, based in London, has named Michael Freudenthal CEO. He assumes the role in December, and Klas Åström, who’s been instrumental in driving the company forward over the last 12 months, will remain on-board as CFO.
Freudenthal comes from the technology sector and will lead the company from its headquarters in Stockholm. He recently held the position of VP and COO at IQUBE. He was also CEO of mobile technology group Mobyson, group managing director of Letsbuyit.com, COO and VP of AcadeMedia and managing director and co-owner of Lighthouse Software.

Hollywood’s Prime Focus has named Mark Intravartolo creative director for North America. He will drive the company's efforts to expand its services, team, and client base in television visual effects.
Intravartolo is a veteran visual effects artist and editor. He joins Prime Focus from Modern VideoFilm, where he contributed effects to Grey Gardens, John Adams, Taking Chance, Max Payne, and Tropic Thunder. He also worked on nine seasons of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation. His work has garnered an Emmy Award and three Emmy nominations.

LA-based VFX/digital production house Zoic Studios has named Erik Press executive producer. He was formerly an EP for CBS Digital, producing VFX for mini-series and episodic television, including the re-mastered effects for Star Trek: The Original Series.
His career includes time at Beau Studio, where, as an EP, he was responsible for producing animation for the famous lizards of Sobe and Lifewater. Press is active in producing Zoic's Salon Series and is a member of the Visual Effects Society.

AvatarLabs in Encino, CA, has named Michelle Naden director of strategic initiatives. She will be responsible for enhancing AvatarLabs’ marketing and business development activities.
Naden was previously an account director for interactive marketing at LA’s Crew Creative, where she helped conceive, pitch and execute digital marketing campaigns that involved Websites, games, banners, widgets, social networking applications, mobile applications and editorial outreach. From 2005-07, she was a sales executive at Pointroll, where she brought in and oversaw online rich media campaigns in film, DVD, music, television, and automotive categories. Her career also includes time with Kaleidoscope Creative Group and Paramount Pictures.

San Francisco’s Little Red Robot, which provides direction, live-action production, and post/VFX services, has added producer Joseph Segrove to its team. He comes to the studio from Attik, where he served as head of production, managing TV, cinema and Web spots for clients such as Scion, Lexus, The NFL, Boost Mobile, Adobe Systems, AOL and Sony Computer Entertainment America. In his new role, he will manage all live-action production and run LRR's in-house post and VFX team.

Visual effects company Ntropic, with offices in LA and San Francisco, has added creative director/VFX supervisor Simon Mowbray to its team. Formerly the co-founder of Radium, Mowbray freelanced at Ntropic on projects for Sprint, Coinstar and Oracle before making the studio his official home.
Mowbray began his career in Australia, working at several CG and design studios in the early days of CG and compositing. He moved to Montreal in 1991 to work as a product specialist for Softimage, and then helped start Discreet Logic with four other founders in 1992. He then moved to Western Images in San Francisco, where he worked as an Inferno artist. In 1996 he and Jonathan Keeton started VFX company Radium, where he served as VP, creative director, designer, Inferno & CG artist. In 2007, they sold Radium to Reel FX, and he became freelance after the company closed its San Francisco office.

Trailer Park’s advanced content group in Hollywood has melded its Blu-ray and DVD business sectors by naming Suzanne Kamenir-Pedersen VP of interactive content. She was recently an executive producer and director for the Universal Studios Home Entertainment account within the creative services department of Deluxe Digital Studios. Her career also includes serving as director, creative services, Blu-ray, for Universal Studios Home Entertainment, and head of motion graphics for The Ant Farm. Earlier in her career, she held several posts within Pittard Sullivan.

VFX supervisor/Flame artist/creative director/digital artist Randy Gackstetter has joined Volt Studios in Minneapolis, MN. Gackstetter has degrees in fine arts and computer graphics, and first worked at WCCO TV. He then co-founded Pixel Farm, where he expanded into commercial, music videos and creative explorations with agencies and directors. He is known for his work on Target’s iconic red and white campaigns, and has also contributed to projects for National Geographic, Porsche and Discovery. His new room at Volt is a combination art studio, lounge and an insert stage.

Editor Mike Coletta has joined the bi-coastal Nomad Editing. He was most recently at 89 Editorial. Coletta is known for his work on story-driven projects with a comedic flair, and has a passion for shaping the narrative.
His entry into editing came at Lookinglass, which is now the Whitehouse, where he worked on one of the first Avid nonlinear editing systems. He later moved his family to New York and joined Bug, where he worked for three years before heading to 89 Editorial. At 89 Editorial he contributed to numerous high profile spots and campaigns, including the True Blood commercial promo series and Purity Organics’ Tirade. Other national spots included work for Volkswagen, MasterCard, Listerine, Verizon Wireless and Motorola.