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Chomsky vs. Chomsky: First Encounter

Sandra Rodriguez
2020
Virtual Reality

Selections and Awards

  • Official SelectionNew Frontier Sundance Film Festival, Park City, Utah, USA (2020)


One-liner


Long Synopsis


Technology and User Experience


Director's Statement

Teaser

Clip

Team


Sandra Rodriguez
Creator and Producer
Biography
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Sandra Rodriguez

Sandra Rodriguez is a creative director, filmmaker and sociologist of media technologies. During her 16-year career she has written, directed and produced  documentaries, webdocs and, recently, VR/XR (virtual reality, extended reality) projects, garnering multiple awards, including a Peabody and a prestigious Golden Nica prize from the Ars Electronica media institute (2019). She has worked as creative director and UX (user experience) design consultant for the United Nations, other public and private media corporations, and game design studios. Fascinated by the platforms and tools we have created to share stories, she focuses on exploring emergent technology and tech disruption for social change. She has been invited to present and mentor in high-visibility events, including the Cannes Film Festival, the World Economic Forum in Davos, South by Southwest (SXSW), the Facebook/Oculus Education project, International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam, the Phi Centre in Montreal, Sheffield Doc/Fest, the Venice Film Festival, DOK Neuland Leipzig, the Taiwan and Busan film festivals, the Canadian Screen Awards, the Frontières IA conference, and more. Rodriguez was recently head of the Creative Reality Lab at EyeSteelFilm, where she explored XR creation (Deprogrammed, Big Picture VR, ManicVR, Chomsky vs. Chomsky). A visiting scholar and lecturer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, she also currently leads Hacking XR, MIT’s very first class in immersive media creation. Her new project, Chomsky vs. Chomsky, strikes sparks at the crossroads of artificial intelligence, immersive media and human creativity.


Michael Burk
Lead Designer (Schnellebuntebilder)
Biography
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Michael Burk

Michael Burk is an interaction designer and media artist. Since graduating from the Berlin University of the Arts, he has created pieces that range from conceptual works in the spirit of critical and speculative design to interactive environments that blur the boundaries between the virtual and the physical. In 2015 he joined schnellbuntebilder, a studio for animation and interactive media; his work as a designer and programmer includes implementing media projects and creating commissioned works of art for museums, exhibitions, and commercial customers. Michael’s focus is on “creative coding,” a central part of the design process, and on agile design from conception to implementation.


Cindy Bishop
Back-End Lead
Biography
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Cindy Bishop

Cindy Sherman Bishop is an interactive multimedia artist and creative coder. She designs and builds interactive installations and apps for galleries, museums, and corporations, while continuing to make good old-fashioned tangible art. Working at the intersection of technology and art, she looks for ways to pull the nuances of analog creation into the digital world —and vice versa. In her current position at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Center for Civic Media, her focus is on creating tools and provocations in creative civic technology, using virtual and augmented reality (VR and AR) and artificial intelligence. Among her primary tools and projects at MIT are VRDoodler, a web-based 3D drawing and storytelling platform; MediaCloud; creative civic AR; and media-image analysis. Primary recent provocations include Rockstar-ai.com, AR protests, Natural Networks, FlatMeMoji, and most recently, Chomsky vs. Chomsky. The disturbing question of whether digital re-creations are merely hollow, shallow imitations of the rich and fascinating world around us is a frequent preoccupation for Sherman Bishop.


Guillaume Petitclerc
AI Lead (Moov AI)
Biography
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Guillaume Petitclerc

Guillaume Petitclerc is a seasoned digital marketing expert and team coach. As marketing director of Sharegate (GSoft) and Urban Turtle (Pyxis Technologies), he managed marketing strategies for products that went on to achieve more than $80 million in annual recurring revenue. He has also worked as a consultant for numerous companies, helping them improve their digital marketing, find the right traction channels and build successful marketing teams.


Olivier Blais
AI Lead (Moov AI)
Biography
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Olivier Blais

Olivier Blais is a data scientist whose principal expertise is in cutting-edge AI and machine learning. As a team leader he has supported the digital transformation of many companies, implementing projects and developing data culture for a range of corporations, including Pratt & Whitney Canada, L’Oréal, and GSoft. He is also co-author of a patent for an advanced algorithm that evaluates the credit-worthiness of borrowers. Olivier is a laureate of the prestigious “30/30” Infopresse prize (2019).


kling klang klong
Music and Sound Design
Biography
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kling klang klong

Kling klang klong is a Berlin-based studio that specializes in designing sound, music and acoustic narratives. Their pioneering acoustic works explore the intersection of science, art and communication. Whether in real spaces or virtual environments, the studio treats the visitor like an active participant in an interplay with organic sound environments. The studio team consists of composers, sound designers, producers, programmers, scientists and creative thinkers. Valuing the emotional impact of sound, they invest their competencies in order to have a stimulating and sharpening effect on the spectator’s own perceptions and mind. Their goal is to help foster social sensitivity, emotional intelligence and thoughtful interaction in society.


Sebastian Huber
Producer (Schnellebuntebilder)
Biography
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Sebastian Huber

Sebastian Huber is the co-founder of schnellbuntebilder, a studio that explores the creative tension between media design and media art. In addition to his work as a designer implementing numerous museum exhibitions, immersive installations and audiovisual performance pieces, Sebastian develops software to meet the different requirements of very diverse projects. This use of software as a creative tool allows the team to create surprising and novel visual worlds, experiences, and types of interaction.

As an advocate of the open-source principle, Sebastian participates in various freely distributed projects and is strongly networked in the global scene of creative programming.
Since 2011, Sebastian has taught courses at Burg Giebichenstein Kunsthochschule Halle and the Technische Hochschule Brandenburg, and has also held various free workshops, mostly in the context of media arts festivals.


Marie-Pier Gauthier
Producer (NFB)
Biography
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Marie-Pier Gauthier

Marie-Pier Gauthier is a producer at the NFB’s Montreal Interactive Studio and has been contributing to this rich narrative laboratory for the past eight years. Whether it’s digital creation on mobile phones or on the web, interactive installations or virtual or augmented reality projects, she supervises the execution of projects by innovative creators working at the crossroads of different disciplines. She produces projects using a range of storytelling tools, including social networks, code, design, artificial intelligence, and conversational robots. With degrees in journalism and interactive production, Marie-Pier has collaborated on more than 100 interactive works (including The Enemy, Do Not Track, and Way to Go) which have received more than 100 awards in Canada and abroad. Marie-Pier is the first woman to occupy the role of producer at the Interactive Studio.


Bob Moore
Executive Producer (EyeSteelFilm)
Biography
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Bob Moore

Bob Moore is Co-President and Creative Producer at EyeSteelFilm in Montreal, where he has produced over 25 feature documentaries since 2008, including Last Train Home (Lixin Fan, 2009), Forest of the Dancing Spirits (Linda Vastrik, 2013), I Am The Blues (Daniel Cross, 2015), Let There Be Light (Mila Aung-Thwin, 2017) and Tokyo Idols (Kyoko Miyake, 2017).  Along with his talented partners and collaborators, he has been the recipient of more than 100 international awards, including Emmys, Golden Horses, Canadian Screen Awards, and festival grand jury prizes. Bob also oversees EyeSteelFilm’s dedicated theatrical distribution company and Creative Reality Lab, which explores meaningful interactive storytelling. He was the subject of a Producer’s Spotlight at the Cannes Marché du Film in 2017, regularly consults with national and international film organizations, and enjoys working with and mentoring emerging filmmakers.


Louis-Richard Tremblay
Executive Producer (NFB)
Biography
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Louis-Richard Tremblay

As an Executive Producer, Louis-Richard works at the converging point between documentary and technology and is involved in projects where interactivity helps to explain phenomena that affect individuals and societies. Trained in political science, he veered into radio and architecture before collaborating on the multi-platform media Bandeapart.fm and the creation of digital journalism units at Radio-Canada. His recent productions explore mobile experiences and immersive environments in virtual reality.


Hugues Sweeney
Executive Producer (NFB)
Biography
Photo
Photo : Karim Ben Khelifa


Hugues Sweeney

After several years of contorting both words and ideas through the study of philosophy, literature and death metal, Hugues Sweeney became interested in stories and the opportunities that technology offers to tell them. He first worked in new media at Radio-Canada, then as head of Bande à part and Espace musique, before joining the National Film Board of Canada in 2009 as executive producer dedicated to interactive works. Whether experimenting with the grammar of interaction, with sound creation or generative art, NFB Interactive Studio projects have received numerous international awards, including honours from SXSW and the Japan Media Arts festival, a Boomerang, and a FIPA d’or, as well as Digital Emmy, IDFA, and Gémeaux nominations.

 

 


Michaela Pnacekova
Executive Producer (Schnellebuntebilder)
Biography
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Michaela Pnacekova

Michaela Pnacekova (born in Slovakia) is an interactive creator-producer and a Ph.D. candidate at York University. Her focus is on the ways new media influence the real through interaction with algorithmic processes and artificial intelligence. Until May 2019 she was head of the Kloos & Co. Medien documentary film production subsidiary in Leipzig, Germany, where she produced documentaries and interactive projects. The documentary Waterproof by Daniela König premiered at DOK Leipzig 2019 (where it received the EWA Award 2017) and IDFA 2019. In 2017, Pnacekova created and produced her first interactive app, Pre-Crime Calculator, as a marketing tool for the launch of the documentary film Pre-Crime. Her first feature-length documentary project as a producer, Border Cut by Igor Chojna, received Special Mention for the Bosch Stiftung East European Co-Production Prize 2014, premiering at the Warsaw Film Festival in 2018; she also worked as production coordinator on the German documentary Last Men in Aleppo, which was shown at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival. Her first VR project as co-author, director and producer was A Symphony of Noise, which was shown at Reeperbahn Festival (Hamburg) and the IDFA Doc Lab Competition for Immersive Non-Fiction 2019 (Amsterdam). Before she entered the new-media field, she worked for several film organizations in Europe: the Berlin Film Festival, the Czech queer film festival Mezipatra, FilmFestival Cottbus (Germany), and NISI MASA, the European Network of Young Cinema. Pnacekova is an alumna of Ex Oriente Workshop 2014 (Prague), Maia Workshop 2014 (Italy), Doc Tank 2017 (Brooklyn, NY), and the id (interactive documentary) workshop at Visions du Reél 2017 (Switzerland), and she was an !F Lab Prototype Booster 2017 (Europe, Canada, other countries).

Images

Credits

Created by
Sandra Rodriguez

Producers
Sandra Rodriguez (EyeSteelFilm)
Sebastian Huber (Schnellebuntebilder)
Marie-Pier Gauthier (NFB)

Lead Designer
Michael Burk (Schnellebuntebilder)

Technology Lead
Cindy Bishop

AI Leads
Guillaume Petitclerc (Moov AI)
Olivier Blais (Moov AI)

Music and Sound Design
kling klang klong

Executive Producers
Bob Moore (EyeSteelFilm)
Mila Aung-Thwin (EyeSteelFilm)
Daniel Cross (EyeSteelFilm)
Louis-Richard Tremblay (NFB)
Hugues Sweeney (NFB)
Michaela Pnacekova (Schnellebuntebilder)

Supported in part by Sundance Institute’s New Frontier Lab Programs with a grant from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

Incubated at the MIT Open Documentary Lab.

Funded by Canada-Germany Digital Media Incentive.



Press Relations

  • About the NFB

    The National Film Board of Canada (NFB) is one of the world’s leading digital content hubs, creating groundbreaking interactive documentaries and animation, mobile content, installations and participatory experiences. NFB interactive productions and digital platforms have won 100 awards, including 21 Webbys. To access this award-winning content and discover the work of NFB creators, visit NFB.ca, download its apps for mobile devices or visit NFB Pause.

  • About Schnellebuntebilder

    Founded in 2011, schnellebuntebilder is a collaboration between Johannes Timpernagel, Robert Pohle, Sebastian Huber, Michael Burk, Ann-Katrin Krenz and Felix Worseck to develop and create multimedia design and digital art. They work with curators, agents, musicians and artists to create animated explainer films, generative visualizations, audiovisual performances, immersive installations and interactive exhibits.

  • About EyeSteelFilm

    Daniel Cross spent six years making his first film, THE STREET (1997). The arduous production process alternated between filming on Montreal’s gritty streets with the local homeless population, and trying to ‘find’ precious 16mm film (i.e., he had to beg, borrow and steal). As a result, ‘EyeSteelFilm’ was chosen as a company name by founders Daniel and Mila Aung-Thwin, during the making of S.P.I.T. Squeegee Punks in Traffic in 1998. The production of that film involved sharing a camera with homeless Squeegee Punk/co-director Eric “Roach” Denis, setting the tone for the company’s interactive, inclusive direct filmmaking ethos. As EyeSteelFilm began expanding, Bob Moore joined as a partner with a deft focus on international co-producing. Today, EyeSteelFilm looks to work with engaged, like-minded filmmakers from around the world who seek to engage with reality using the language of documentary cinema.