NEP Names Barbara Ford Grant as President of New Prysm Stages Business Unit
NEP Group has appointed entertainment industry veteran Barbara Ford Grant to President of its newly formed NEP Prysm Stages business unit. NEP Prysm Stages is part of NEP Virtual Studios, which was formed in August last year after NEP acquired Lux Machina Consulting, Halon Entertainment and Prysm Collective to accelerate its strategic vision to be the leader in virtual production solutions worldwide. NEP launched the Prysm Stages brand in late 2021 to support its growing global network of permanent stages designed for film and TV.
Ford Grant joins NEP from arts and entertainment company Meow Wolf where she served as Chief Technology Officer, overseeing its mixed-reality platform and IT divisions. She previously served as SVP, Digital Production Services at HBO overseeing studio production and post-production operations and growth, and next-gen technologies. Prior to that, she worked at entertainment companies Digital Domain, Sony Pictures Imageworks, DreamWorks Animation with credits including Game of Thrones, Maleficent, Alice In Wonderland and the Shrek franchise.
Throughout her career, she has also been active in recognizing and mentoring existing and new talent. Ford Grant currently serves as the Chair of the Scientific and Technical Awards Committee for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, is a member of the Technology Committee of the Visual Effects Society, and recently worked as a strategy consultant to MovieLabs, a non-profit R&D joint venture providing universities, corporations, start-ups and others technical guidance and funding for innovative technologies in the distribution and use of motion pictures.
Ford Grant adds to NEP’s talented lineup of virtual production leaders, led by Global President of NEP Virtual Studios, Cliff Plumer.
“We are excited to welcome Barbara to NEP Prysm Stages,” says Plumer. “We’re seeing another key inflection point in the entertainment industry where creative and technology changes – like virtual production – are revolutionizing the filmmaking process. Having been on both sides of the creative and technical processes, Barbara is excellent at building solutions that empower artists and storytelling, making her a perfect fit for NEP as we embark on leading our clients and the industry into the future.”
NEP’s virtual production capabilities, including in-camera visual effects (ICVFX), enable directors and creative teams to see an entire scene complete with visual effects and CG enhancements live on set, and to restage, revise digital sets, make lighting changes, adjust camera angles, and more on the spot. This ability to produce and manipulate shots interactively is transforming the way movies and shows are being made, speeding-up collaboration and production, and opening new creative options and solutions – all while reducing costs and often the carbon footprint by cutting travel and physical set construction.
In November 2021 NEP announced its first Prysm Stage at Trilith Studios in Atlanta, Georgia. The Prysm Stage at Trilith Studios is one of the world’s largest virtual production facilities, featuring a fully enclosed 80’ x 90’ x 26’ virtual production volume in an 18,000 square foot purpose-built sound stage, and operated by the industry’s leading virtual production specialists.
“I am honored to join this world-class team and have the opportunity to lead NEP Prysm Stages at such an exciting time for the company and the burgeoning virtual production industry,” says Ford Grant. “Together with NEP’s team of technology and production experts and global reach, I see NEP Prysm Stages accelerating virtual production access and capabilities across the globe.”