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5D Adds Microsoft's Hirsch and Iron Man Production Designer Riva

5D: The Future of Immersive Design Conference has added two industry luminaries to its program, scheduled for this Saturday and Sunday on the California State University at Long Beach (CSULB) campus.

Evan Hirsch, Creative Director of Microsoft Live Labs, will join the Saturday panel, "Narrating Space," while Emmy-winning production designer J. Michael Riva will participate during the Sunday session, "Bigger Bang: Colliding Science and Design."

Produced by the Art Directors Guild (ADG) and CSULB, this first-ever conference takes place at the Carpenter Performing Arts Center on campus, with Autodesk as the presenting sponsor. In addition to a full complement of panel sessions, attendees will experience the very latest on the impact of immersive design through sponsored workshops, custom designed by leading companies in the content and technology fields including DreamWorks Animation, ILM, OTC Productions, and Walt Disney Imagineering.

Hirsch is Creative Director of Microsoft Live Labs, an applied research organization focused on the incubation of innovative, Internet-centric technologies to improve and accelerate the evolution of Microsoft's Internet products and services. He is responsible for the visual and audio design for the portfolio of projects at Live Labs. Prior to Microsoft, Hirsch worked at Vanguard Animation, Cinesite Europe and Electronic Arts. He is a member of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts as well as the Industrial Design Society of America. He received his BFA in Industrial Design from Rochester Institute of Technology.

Riva is an Academy Award nominee for his designs on Steven Spielberg's THE COLOR PURPLE, and an Emmy Award winner for his design of the 79th Academy Awards telecast. Riva designed the vfx-heavy box office smash IRON MAN from director Jon Favreau and is currently working on the sequel alongside futurist Jon Underkoffler, who will moderate the "Bigger Bang" panel at 5D on Sunday.

Riva's other credits include A FEW GOOD MEN, DAVE, ORDINARY PEOPLE, LETHAL WEAPON 1,2, and 4 as well as CHARLIE'S ANGELS 1 and 2, among others. He designed SPIDER-MAN 3, ZATHURA (also directed by Favreau), and the vfx- laden DreamWorks film EVOLUTION, for director Ivan Reitman. Riva was the designer of the cult favorite BUCKAROO BANZAI, and the Dick Donner classic, GOONIES (along with Production Designer Rick Carter). He also supervised the final designs of all the aircraft and technical props featured in the Columbia film STEALTH.

"Both Evan Hirsch and J. Michael Riva epitomize what 5D is about, with their varied backgrounds and remarkable bodies of work," said Alex McDowell, co-founder of 5D and head of the Art Directors Guild Technology Committee. "They exemplify the emergence of a new breed of designer, who can flow freely between the real and the virtual -- between media and across cultures. Both will contribute significantly to this groundbreaking international conference, which explores the profound impact of rapidly changing technologies in design for narrative media -- architecture, film and television, game design, animation, interactive media, and environment -- for artists, designers, scholars, educators, and students."

Tickets are available online only at Attendees may also register onsite at no additional cost. Pricing has been established to encourage academic and professional participation through special rates, with the current early bird pricing of $225 for a full professional pass available until the event opens on October 4. For more information on special rates, contact Rachel Ramirez at 714-374-1140 (