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Voice Of The Crew - Since 2002

Los Angeles, California

Charles Swartz

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Charles Swartz, a key figure in helping move Hollywood into the digital 21st century, died of pneumonia in Los Angeles on Feb. 10 at the age of 67. Swartz, who retired in 2006 as head of the Entertainment Technology Center, a unit of the University of Southern California‘s School of Cinematic Arts, had also been suffering from brain cancer. A noted educator and a strong advocate for the transition to digital distribution and exhibition of films in theaters, Swartz headed the ETC for four years from 2002 until his retirement last summer. During that period, he worked closely with the major film studios on their Digital Cinema Initiative. Swartz was able to combine his knowledge of media technology and his familiarity with the entertainment businesshe had once been a screenwriter and producerto serve as a nexus between the studios, equipment makers and the industry’s technicians.”Digital cinema was his passion, and he played a strong leadership role in its evolution,” said Curtis Clark, chairman of the technology committee of the American Society of Cinematographers. Born in Texas and educated at Yale, Swartz went on to do graduate work at USC’s fledgling cinema program. There he met and married fellow student Stephanie Rothman. She survives him. Swartz produced eight films with his wife co-writing screenplays. The family has asked that contributions honoring Charles Swartz be sent to the Save the Redwoods League (www.savetheredwoods.org) and the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank, (www.lafightshunger.org).

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