The first annual Parapod Festival, a celebration of all things paranormal, is taking place Friday, March 31 through Saturday, April 1 at various Santa Clarita locations.

“Although there is an abundance of paranormal content with hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of views, we never really see these creators – filmmakers, podcasters, investigators – being honored,” remarked Tony Sweet, Parapod leader as well as executive producer and host of paranormal video podcast “Truth Be Told.” “That is why I wanted to develop a platform where all forms of paranormal content could be celebrated.”

Parapod will screen documentaries at the FilmFreeway Gold film festival, taking place the night of March 31 at the Regal Edwards Cinema Valencia, followed by stargazing at the Vasquez Rocks Nature Area.

Saturday, April 1 will be filled with guest lectures at the Hyatt Regency Valencia and ParaPod Awards in the evening. Guest lecturers include Dr. Robert M. Schoch from “Ancient Aliens,” Patti Negri of “Ghost Adventures,” Ben Hansen of “Fact or Faked Paranormal Files” and Char Margolis of “RuPaul’s Drag Race.”

Jimmy Church, podcast host of “Fade to Black,” will lead the award ceremony. The Pioneer award will go to best-selling author and producer Billy Carson, whose work includes serving as founder and CEO of streaming network 4BiddenKnowledge TV. The Media Legend award will go home with Emmy and Peabody award-winning investigative journalist Linda Moulton Howe, whose work includes “Ancient Aliens” and “Truth Hunter.”

Documentaries and podcasts to be considered for the festival awards may be submitted through Feb. 24 via FilmFreeway and the festival’s website, respectively.

DNEG Taps VFX Artist Adriano Rinaldi as General Manager for Vancouver Studio

DNEG, the visual effects and animation company behind upcoming films like Christopher Nolan’s “Oppenheimer,” Bong Joon Ho’s “Mickey 17” and Justin Simien’s “Haunted Mansion” announced today the hire of Adriano Rinaldi as general manager of the company’s studio in Vancouver, Canada.

“To have the opportunity to join DNEG’s Vancouver studio and to contribute to the company’s success in creating world-class visual effects and animation is thrilling,” Rinaldi said. “I look forward to working with the talented teams at DNEG and to the continued delivery of innovative and outstanding work to our clients.”

Rinaldi is entering the position with over 16 years of experience in the entertainment industry as a senior manager and a creative supervisor. Most recently, he served as an additional VFX supervisor on Marvel’s “Eternals” and collaborated with director Dante Lam on 2020’s “The Rescue” as an on-set VFX supervisor.

The studio executive will oversee a team of over 600 employees as DNEG attempts to expand and strengthen its Vancouver studio. DNEG has previously received seven Oscars in eight years for best visual effects, including last year for Denis Villenueve’s “Dune.”

“I am delighted to welcome Adriano to DNEG, to lead our Vancouver studio,” said Jeannette Manifold, executive vice president of VFX operations at DNEG. “Adriano’s combination of senior creative leadership experience and hands-on operational knowledge and know-how will be a great asset to our Vancouver team as we continue to scale and invest in our crew and infrastructure to take advantage of the opportunities before us. I look forward to working closely with Adriano to further expand Vancouver’s role as a vital part of our global network of studios.”

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