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Presidents' Panel, Awards to Open VSDA

1 Jul, 2003 By: Kurt Indvik

A panel featuring the presidents of the home video divisions of a number of the major studios will discuss industry issues during the opening ceremonies at the VSDA's Home Entertainment 2003.

The July 29 panel will kick off at 9 a.m. and run to 11 a.m. in showroom at the Venetian.

Moderated by USA Today entertainment reporter Scott Bowles, the “Discussion With Industry Leaders” will include Kelley Avery, head of DreamWorks Home Entertainment, worldwide; David Bishop, president and CEO of MGM Home Entertainment Group; Jim Cardwell, president of Warner Home Video; Bob Chapek, president of Buena Vista Home Entertainment; and Mike Dunn, president of 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment.

Also during the opening session, and presented for the first time last year to George Carlin, the Smothers Brothers will be on hand to receive the second George Carlin Freedom of Expression Award during the Opening Ceremonies. The brothers have been entertaining audiences for 45 years and recently released their Bravo special Smothered: The Great Smothers Brothers Censorship Wars on VHS and DVD.

Actor and director Peter Fonda will also be honored with the first-ever VSDA Maverick Award, recognizing his unconventional work that resisted typical Hollywood formulaic acting and storytelling. During his career, Fonda pursued such cutting-edge projects as Easy Rider, The Trip and The Hired Hand that helped pave the way for many of the independent films made today.

This year, the opening ceremonies will also include the announcement of the winners of the annual VSDA's Home Entertainment Awards in the product, technical and retail categories. Also, VSDA president Bo Andersen will present his annual State of the Industry address.

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