Entries Filed Under "Work"

June 25, 2010

2010 ILM Cinefex Credit

Filed under Work


Like it does every year, ILM took out a two page ad thanking its employee’s in the July issue of Cinefex magazine.

To skip to the good stuff (my credit), go to the right page, 1st column, 25th down. For some reason, almost everybody in Research & Development has a middle initial listed…weird.

Left page…


Right page…



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September 13, 2009

Star Tours II

Filed under 3D, Movies, Work

Coming to a Disney theme park near you in 2011, the sequel to Star Tours.

Video is here.

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July 14, 2009

My First Movie Credit

Filed under Movies, Work


I saw Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince today. It is easily the best Harry Potter movie.

I knew my name was submitted for a credit...but you don't know if you actually *are* in the credits until you see the film.

I watched the film today...and I *am* in the credits!

The first large break in the credits (about a full screen) occurs just before the "Industrial Light & Magic"-section. I'm in the "Research & Development" group at ILM. There are only 2 people from R&D in the credits: myself and Max Chen. We are under the title "Technical Support." My name is in the center column, last row.

I'm thrilled to have a movie credit...and on a really good movie, no less.

June 20, 2009

ILM Cinefex Credit

Filed under Work

Cinefex Cover

Every year ILM takes out a two page ad in Cinefex magazine to thank its employees.

This is my third time to be in the credit list. Here are my first and second.

I'm on page 2, 1st column, 32nd down.

Page 1...


Cinefex ILM Credits Page 1 

Page 2...

Cinefex ILM Credits Page 2

April 10, 2009

David vs. David: Blu-Ray/DVD Taste Test

Filed under Gadgets, HDTV, Movies, Work


First, some background.

I showed David Bullock, a buddy of mine from work, a blog post I did about HD-DVD vs. DVD and how the difference for a typical TV size and viewing distance is not as obvious as you would think.

We got in several “discussions” about the topic. DavidB thought it would be easy to tell the difference between Blu-ray and DVD. I claimed it would be difficult.

Who would be right?

Arguing got us no where. We decided to settle this like they did in the Pepsi Challenge: a “Blu-Ray/DVD Taste Test.”

The loser of the test has to take the winner out for dinner at a restaurant of their choosing.

The taste test had the following rules:

  • 10 popular movies of David Lenihan’s choosing
  • Play a scene of David Lenihan’s choosing
  • May be all DVD, all Blu-ray, or a mix
  • Played in random order
  • No replaying
  • No pausing
  • Played on a PlayStation 3 connected to a Sony XBR3 46” LCD via HDMI
  • TV/PS3 running at 1080p
  • Tuned with Blu-ray Digital Video Essentials
  • 1:1 Pixel Mapping for Blu-ray content
  • Test subjects cannot watch video setup or when video stops
  • Viewing distance of 6ft or more
  • Scoring is as follows:
    • 1 point for each movie identified correctly as Blu-ray or DVD
    • -1 point for each movie incorrectly identified
    • 0 points for blank answer

I invited people from work to join in the fun.


From left to right: CharlieK, Ed, DavidB, Shelly, Greg, An, and Ted.

Here are the movies I showed:

  1. Death Proof - DVD
  2. Matrix – DVD
  3. Dark City – DVD
  4. Pixar’s Lifted – Blu-Ray
  5. Reservoir Dogs – Blu-Ray
  6. Close Encounters of the Third Kind – Blu-Ray
  7. Sleeping Beauty – Blu-Ray
  8. Terminator 2 – Blu-Ray
  9. Blade Runner – DVD
  10. Sin City – DVD

I had everybody predict what their score would be on the scorecard.

Here are the results (click on the names to see the actual scorecard)…

Place Name Predicted Score Actual Score
1. Greg 5 6
2. (tie) An (left blank) 0
2. (tie) Shelly 5 0
4. (tie) DavidB 6 -1
4. (tie) Ed 3 -1
6. CharlieK 2 -2
7. Ted 6 -3


Some interesting results:

  • Everyone picked Lifted as Blu-ray, and it was
  • Everyone picked Sin City as Blu-ray, but it was DVD
  • A score of zero is what you would expect if someone guessed on every movie. Only Greg beat the guessing score.
  • Ted did 9 points worse than he predicted, the biggest disparity
  • Greg was the only person that did better than they predicted, by 1 point
  • The average score was –0.14, which is worse than the guessing average

So where should I have David take me to dinner? Post your suggestions in the comments.

This was a lot of fun…thanks to my buds from work for coming out and being great sports!

April 2, 2009

The Digital Bits

Filed under Work

The Digital Bits Web Page 

I did a “photo shoot” last week with fellow ILM-ers JD Hass and Frank D’Iorio for the “The Digital Bits,” a web site focused on upcoming DVD/Blu-ray releases. We aren’t on the front page anymore, but you can find the original photo/burb here.

December 11, 2008

Some TFU Love

Filed under Reviews, Video Games, Work


Here are a couple of nice holiday recommendations for TFU.

These guys place TFU as the number one game gift for Xmas.

Time Magazine picked the top 10 games of the year, and TFU was number #7!

I played through the whole game and thoroughly enjoyed it…definitely a must-play for Star Wars fans.

September 28, 2008

TFU Launch At Best Buy

Filed under Events, Video Games, Work, Xbox 360


We had a fun event at Best Buy for the launch of TFU. The game didn't go on sale until Tuesday, September 16th. The party started at 8pm on Monday the 15th and went until midnight when the game could be distributed. It really felt like a mini-Star Wars convention with all the costumes.

George was there...which is always fun for any Star Wars geek.

I took a picture with the cutest Hoth soldier I've ever seen...

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My favorite part of the launch party were the droids. These guys are part of the Astromech club...and their work will blow you away! They built their own R2-D2's from scratch...and the attention to detail is amazing! I took a bunch of video:

Here are a bunch of photos of R2...

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They also had a mouse droid running around and I got some video of that.


The mouse droid and its operator


Tie Fighter Pilot and Obi Wan catching up


Playing TFU before it is released


My Mom...Unleashed!


Mom (wearing a very cool and unique Javva the Hutt shirt), Speeder Bike Storm Trooper, Imperial Officer, and my buddy Myra at the entrance to Best Buy.


Mom, Chewbacca (center), and Ben (worked on TFU)

They had a stage setup up in the back of Best Buy with various celebrities talking to the crowd...

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Crowd favorite Bobba Fett begged me for a photo with him. How can you say no to a bounty hunter...


Autographs! They had the cast and developers on hand for autographs...



Very cute Adrienne Wilkinson as "Maris Brood"


Cully Fredricksen as "Master Kota"


Lead Engineer Cedrick Coullomb (also author of the must-have utility "unlocker")


David Collins (voice of Proxy, Audio Lead) on left and Art Director Matt Omernick on right.

I got got a bunch of autographs from my co-workers. Amy Beth Christenson (Senior Concept Artist...she is simply amazing) asked me for *my* autograph, which was very cool!

tfu autographs 

Of course they had everything TFU on sale at Best Buy...


The whole point of the party was for people that wanted to get the game as soon as it went on sale at midnight. I got pictures of the front of the line...and almost the last guy (#998). They only gave out 1000 tickets...then there were people waiting after position 1000 hoping to get the game without a ticket. Wow!

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Sony provided an 18 wheeler loaded with PS3's for the event...

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We had nice press coverage...

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The Gas Unleashed...to the right you can almost see the storm trooper blasted off his feet.

September 24, 2008

1.5 Million and Counting...

Filed under Video Games, Work

From Penny Arcade...


The Force Unleashed has been out a week now.

This article from Variety says TFU sold 1.5 million copies in 5 days making it the fastest selling LucasArts game in its 26 year history.

September 23, 2008

Cinefex Credit

Filed under Work

cinefex cover

I just got this quarter's Cinefex magazine. ILM took out a two page ad to thank its employees for this year's work.

I'm listed on the 2nd page, 1st column, 7th from the bottom...

ILM Credit Page 1

ILM Credit Page 2


September 18, 2008

First Video Game Credit

Filed under Celebrity, Video Games, Work

TFU Manual Cover

Star Wars: The Force Unleashed (TFU) came out Tuesday this week. I'm pretty excited about it...it's my first video game credit!

I worked in a group called "Shared Tools and Technology" (Shared Tech) which is made up of people from ILM Research & Development (my group) and LucasArts. We worked together to build software used to create the game.

I am in the instruction manual credits, on page 19, 2nd column, 5th from the top...

TFU Manual Credits


I am also in the game credits. You can get there from the TFU main menu by choosing "Extras" and then "Credits." I'm under the heading "Shared Tools and Technology/Shared Tech", 13th down...


game credit

TIP: You can get to the good part of the credits quickly (i.e. my part) by pressing down on the the left joystick. You can go backwards by pressing up.

LucasArts also let us do dedications in the game credits. It is located under "Special Thanks." I am the 5th one...

game special thanks

September 13, 2008

#1 on NY Times Best Seller List

Filed under Video Games, Work



Wow! The novelization of the Star Wars: The Force Unleashed video game debuted at #1 last week on the NY Times' best seller list.

September 11, 2008

TFU Launch Party @ Best Buy

Filed under Video Games, Work


This is going to be fun!

The Best Buy in downtown SF is hosting a party as a countdown until the game goes on sale at midnight.

I'm definitely going to this...and if you are in the area, you should too. It sounds like it will be quite an event.





Here is the press release:

LucasArts, Sony Computer Entertainment America and Best Buy Invite San Francisco to Celebrate the Launch of Star Wars®: The Force Unleashed™

Party on Sept. 15 Kicks off New Chapter in the Star Wars Saga

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. — Sept. 5, 2008 — LucasArts, Sony Computer Entertainment America and Best Buy will commemorate the release of the upcoming videogame Star Wars: The Force Unleashed with an exclusive launch party, offering eager gamers a chance to celebrate the Saga and get their hands on the first copies of the game. The party, which will be held at the Best Buy store at 1717 Harrison St. in San Francisco on Monday, Sept. 15, will run from 7pm until midnight and will feature appearances by several very special guests, including:

  • Sam Witwer, who plays Darth Vader’s Secret Apprentice in the game and who also joined the cast of The CW’s “Smallville” this season; Adrienne Wilkinson, who plays Maris Brood, a dark and mysterious Jedi; and Cully Fredrickson, who plays Jedi Master Rahm Kota, a militant General who is the target of one of the Secret Apprentice’s early missions
  • Executive Producer Haden Blackman, Art Director Matt Omernick, Lead Engineer Cedrick Collomb, Lead Content Designer John Stafford, Lead Systems Designer Rich Davis, and dozens of other members of The Force Unleashed development team at LucasArts

In addition, attendees will get a chance to play the full version of the game in advance and be able to get their photo taken with some of their favorite Star Wars characters.

An entirely new chapter in the Star Wars Saga, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed casts players as Darth Vader’s “Secret Apprentice” and promises to unveil new revelations about the Star Wars galaxy. The game’s expansive story is set during the largely unexplored era between Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith and Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope. In it, players will assist Vader in his quest to rid the universe of Jedi — and face decisions that could change the course of their destiny.

About LucasArts

LucasArts, a Lucasfilm Ltd. company, is a leading developer and publisher of interactive entertainment software worldwide for video game console systems, computers and the Internet. Based in San Francisco, Calif., as well as on the Internet at www.lucasarts.com, LucasArts was created in 1982 by George Lucas to provide an interactive element to his vision of a state-of-the-art, multifaceted entertainment company.

LucasArts and the LucasArts logo are registered trademarks of Lucasfilm Ltd. © 2008 Lucasfilm Entertainment Company Ltd. or Lucasfilm Ltd. & ® or ™ as indicated. All rights reserved.

The Force Unleashed Commercials

Filed under Video Games, Work

It's almost time for launch (Sept 16th)! You should start seeing these on TV soon.


August 19, 2008

TFU Demo

Filed under Video Games, Work


The playable demo of The Force Unleashed is coming out Thursday on Xbox 360 and PS3...check it out!

July 8, 2008

New TFU Trailer

Filed under Video Games, Work


Should drop tomorrow...and it is *awesome*!

Look for it on Entertainment Weekly.

*Update* Here it is!

July 3, 2008

TFU Hands On

Filed under Video Games, Work

IGN has a nice article about playing some of Star Wars: The Force Unleashed.

They also have several videos from the game (look for videos added July 1st).

These are my favorites...


April 13, 2008

More TFU Video Clips

Filed under Video Games, Work, Xbox 360


Here is some new HD footage (run this full screen) of the The Force Unleashed in action.

The whole show is 21 minutes with lots of great video and reveals about the game. There is also talk about the voice of Darth Vader by "Chad Vader", the new TFU toys coming out, and the Wiimote lightsaber addition. Definitely worth watching the whole program.


April 3, 2008

September 16

Filed under Video Games, Work


Today, LucasArts announced the U.S. release date for The Force Unleashed as September 16.

Also, Spike TV is going to show exclusive game footage during its screening of all 6 Star Wars movies starting this weekend. Here's the schedule for the game footage:

  • April 6 at 7:58 p.m. ET/PT - between the premiere of Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones and Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith
  • April 11 at 10:52 p.m. ET/PT - At the end of Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope
  • April 12 at 12:00 a.m. ET/PT - throughout an episode of GameTrailers TV with Geoff Keighley filmed at LucasArts' headquarters in San Francisco
  • April 12 at 5:06 p.m. ET/PT - before Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope
  • April 13 at 5:06 p.m. ET/PT - before Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back

February 13, 2008

Star Wars: The Clone Wars

Filed under 3D, Animation, Movies, Work


Wow! Some interesting news dropped today.

Lucasfilm Animation's first project, The Clone Wars, is going to be released as a movie August 15th followed by a TV series on The Cartoon Network and TNT. More details here.

The trailer is here.

February 9, 2008

Vanity Fair TFU Article

Filed under Video Games, Work




The March 2008 issue of Vanity Fair features a nice write-up of The Force Unleashed (TFU), the video game we are working on.

It is interesting that a video game is getting this kind of attention from a magazine like Vanity Fair.

Check out the article, "The Game Has Changed," here.

VF has some exclusive video from the game here.

Here are some new screen shots from the game.

The VF writer added a web post about "the lively sport of Jawa punting."


February 7, 2008

Inbox Zero

Filed under Computers, Reviews, Software, Work


Merlin Mann stopped by today to give us his "Inbox Zero" talk about controlling high volumes of email.

I picked up some useful tips:

  • Don't use your inbox as a "to do" list...it is only for unread mail.
  • Your inbox should be empty most of the time. Leaving email in your inbox slows down your ability to process new email and forces you to revisit old email over and over.
  • When you have email in your inbox, you should go through it quickly and do one of the following:
    • Delete it
    • Delegate it - forward to someone that can handle the email, then remove/archive the email
    • Respond, then remove/archive the email
    • Defer (move it to a folder for things you don't have time to figure out an action for just yet, but will later)
    • Do what the email asks now, then remove/archive the email
  • Turn off email notifications...they just stop you from being productive by interrupting your current work.
  • Check your email less frequently: You will process 20 new emails at once more quickly than 1 new email 20 different times.

I am doing this both for my work and home email. I moved all my email out of my inbox into a "To Do Email" folder (a "defer" folder). I have empty inboxes now!

Merlin is a great, entertaining speaker. I highly recommend this program. It should be required viewing...you will spend less time in email and more time doing what you want after you watch this.

This 1 hour video is the same talk we got today, but this was recorded from Merlin's visit to Google:

February 6, 2008

Conan Visit to Lucasfilm

Filed under Funny, Work


Conan did a spot at ILM/Lucasfilm this past May when he was in San Francisco for a week doing his show. If you haven't seen it, you should.

The video was up on Youtube for a little while, but was quickly yanked.

NBC has the video, but you have to pick the clip you want to watch (I can't link to a clip...grrrr).

Go here and select "Lucasfilm Part 1 (5/1/07)" and "Lucasfilm Part 2 (5/1/07)".

January 29, 2008

The Force Unleashed: Webdoc 3

Filed under Video Games, Work

Here's a nice clip on our new game:

December 15, 2007

Company Christmas Cards

Filed under Work


We got Christmas cards last week: 30 popup caroling stormtroopers (it's the 30th anniversary of Star Wars this year) holding song books and candles. Here is some info about the making of the card.

Here is a nice visual history of most of the previous Christmas cards. Some of the art is impressive. Most impressive.

September 18, 2007

My First Credit

Filed under Movies, Work


Check out the October 2007 (Issue 111) of Cinefex (a magazine about movie special effects).

On page 72, I got my first credit!



About Work

This page contains an archive of all entries posted to David's Blog in the Work category. They are listed from oldest to newest.

Web is the previous category.

WTF is the next category.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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