Published on November 25, 2008
DAVID C. COBB writer / director / storyteller / geek / guru / ideaguy
INTRODUCTION Take a background that combines writing, storytelling, and directing... add over a decade of working with high-profile entertainment brands & location-based attractions... mix in a good dollop of pop-culture & technology geekdom... and there you have it, a fifteen-year career that’s always been about dreaming up new and unique ways to entertain people. From theme parks, rides & attractions to museums, retail & resorts, I’ve collaborated on numerous entertainment projects all over the world, constantly looking for new ways to integrate technology, interactivity, and theatricality to engage and excite an audience.
NOTABLE PROJECTS • Men In Black: Alien Attack • The Italian Job Stunt Track • Toymaker 3000 • Survivor: The Ride • Tomb Raider: Firefall • The Mask 4D • Landmark Entertainment • Paramount Licensing
MEN IN BLACK: ALIEN ATTACK • Creative director, show producer & writer from concept to opening day. • This award-winning attraction is a a “life-sized, ride-through video game” where riders defend the streets of NYC from a horde of marauding aliens, competing against each other for points and the chance to become a full- fledged MIB agent. Combining dual ride tracks, 100+ animated figures, full interactivity, spinning vehicles and multiple endings, MIB is an experience that’s never the same ride twice. • Opened in 2000 at Universal Studios Florida.
THE ITALIAN JOB STUNT TRACK • Creative director & show producer from concept to opening day. • Based on both a hit movie and a hot lifestyle car brand. • Recreates climactic car chase from the hit movie with launched Mini Coopers, on-board audio, dramatic music & sound, and environmental theming & special effects. • Opened in 2005 & 2006 at Kings Island, Canada’s Wonderland & Kings Dominion parks.
TOYMAKER 3000 • Creative director, show producer & writer from concept to opening day. • An “Adventure in Automation” that educates & entertains with numerous interactive robots and a real toy-making assembly line where you can purchase & customize your very own toy top. • Opened in 2003 at the Chicago Museum of Science and Industry.
SURVIVOR: THE RIDE • Creative director & show producer from concept to opening day. • Celebrates the most popular television show in the world, combining a team-based interactive game and a spinning, coaster-like family thrill ride. • Transforms an “off-the-shelf” ride conveyance into an interactive experience for both riders & specatators through environmental theming, water & fire effects, a custom musical score, and unique “rhythm-game” interactive video media in the queue area. • Opened in 2006 at Great America park.
TOMB RAIDER: FIREFALL • Creative director & show producer from concept to opening day. • Transforms an “off-the-shelf” ride conveyance into an intense cinematic experience for both riders & specatators through environmental theming, water & fire effects, and a dramatic custom musical score. • Opened in 2005 at Kings Dominion park.
THE MASK 4D • Creative director & writer from concept to opening day. • Integrates live performers, show action equipment, 3D film, computer-generated imagery and in-theater effects. • Opened in 2002 at Warner Bros. Movie World park in Madrid, Spain.
LANDMARK ENTERTAINMENT I was a show writer and creative director at Landmark Entertainment Group for nearly seven years, participating on numerous projects at both the conceptual and production levels. Highlights include: • Show writing for Terminator 2: 3D at Universal Studios. • Early concept development for SpiderMan at Universal’s Islands of Adventure. • Attraction & park development for Universal Hollywoodland regional theme park concept. • Show writing for Star Trek: The Experience and Borg Invasion 4D at the Las Vegas Hilton. • Creative direction & show writing for M&Ms 3D attraction in Las Vegas. • Show writing & on-site direction for Caesars Magical Empire in Las Vegas. • Concept development & show writing for Aliens 3D attraction for 20th Century Fox (unproduced). • Concept development, show writing, and on-site direction for TimeEscape at Navy Pier, Chicago. • Misc. creative direction and writing for countless unproduced concepts, as well as on-site production support and direction for many other produced shows.
PARAMOUNT LICENSING From 2003-2007, I worked for Paramount Pictures’ licensing department, developing rides, shows, attractions, theme parks, and integrated resort concepts that utilize Paramount’s vast library of intellectual properties. This included designing and supervising regional attractions for the Paramount Parks chain in North America (sold to Cedar Fair in 2006), as well as creative development of much larger blue-sky concepts for major, world-class destination projects in locations around the globe. Unfortunately, the international projects are strictly confidential, so I cannot share any of the designs. My role included overall creative direction and branded attraction development for the following: • Four separate and distinct destination theme parks, in various places throughout Asia and the Middle East. • Three different integrated resort concepts with themed retail, dining & attractions. • Conceptual development of a Paramount-branded hotel, both to compliment other resort concepts, and as a stand-alone property. • Countless attraction concepts, based on such properties as Titanic, Transformers, SpongeBob SquarePants, The Addams Family, Tomb Raider, Mission: Impossible, School of Rock, Braveheart, Beowulf, Star Trek, and Lemony Snicket’s ‘A Series of Unfortunate Events’. • More info at paramountlicensing.com
HOW I EXPRESS MYSELF I don’t draw, but I am a designer that uses many other forms of expression in my work. Here’s a handy chart! Wr i t i n g Media Te c h n o l o g y Po l l e n a t i o n Enthusiasm
WRITING • Treatments, presentations, scripts, story development, storyboard direction, screenplays, programming scripts, etc. • I enjoy discovering a project’s narrative ﬂow and creating engaging ways to tell that story to clients, collaborators, and customers • It all starts with a story...
MEDIA • I like to use audio/visual presentations as part of the concept design process, and have presentation-level skills in video & audio editing & post production. • When in production or in the ﬁeld, I have extensive directing experience with media artists such as cinematographers, editors, sound designers, and animators.
TECHNOLOGY • I keep current with all forms of technology as both a professional and an end user, and aspire to integrate it seamlessly into both the design process and the end product. • From concept development to production in the ﬁeld, I have a high degree of understanding of entertainment technology systems and can “speak geek” ﬂuently in almost any creative application.
POLLENATION • From directing artists & talent, to brainstorming with engineers & technicians, I pride myself on being an all-around collaborator who understands and embraces every part the design process. • I can synthesize the various components of a project into an exciting, attainable goal for the team, by seeing the “big picture” of a project, and how each element will affect the audience experience.
ENTHUSIASM • At the end of the day, I’m also a consumer, enthusiast, and honest-to-goodness fan who actually enjoys and spends money on the kind of entertainment I create. • I’m an avid theme park goer, movie watcher, video gamer and all-around pop-culture junkie. • If the audience isn’t happy, I haven’t done my job.
OTHER COMPANIES In addition to my project-based work, I have consulted with numerous other entertainment companies and design firms, such as: • Universal Creative • Six Flags • Thinkwell • Hettema & Associates • BRC • Blur Studios • Salt Lake 2002 Winter Olympic Committee • The Bezark Company • Cirque du Soleil
REFERENCES • Phil Hettema, 626-683-9876 Principal, Hettema & Associates • Ty Granaroli, 818-445-1158 Writer, Director, Creative Executive • Craig Hanna, 818-333-3444 Principal, Thinkwell Design & Production • Adam Bezark, 818-720-3158 Creative Director, Disney Creative Entertainment • Kurt Haunfelner, 773-947-6796 VP of Exhibits, Chicago Museum of Science & Industry • Robin Hall, 626-437-8252 Art Director/Designer • Christian Hope, 818-259-2059 Illustrator/Designer
DAVID C. COBB thanks for your time!
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