Sony Pixel Power calrec Sony

Talking Generative AI with Corridor Digital's Niko Pueringer


By: Alyssa Heater

The 2024 HPA Tech Retreat, now in its 29th year, showcased a program chock full of presentations, panels, and roundtables spanning a wealth of topics. One primary area of focus at this year's conference was Artificial Intelligence and its impact on the future of production and post. While the topic is often polarizing, the AI-focused Supersession on Tuesday provided a deep dive into how these tools can help in the content creation process.

Corridor Digital co-founder Niko Pueringer, alongside Caleb and Shelby Ward of Curious Refuge, Tim Simmons of Theoretically Media, director/producer Ruby Bell, composer Isy Lauf, VFX producer/animator Shaman Marya, and virtual camera supervisor Jackson Hayes, all participated in Tuesday's Supersession. Each presenter an expert in their own niche fields of VFX, AI, animation, production, and beyond served as a representative of how these elements all tie together to create a stunning final product.

Over the past year, Pueringer has been researching and educating himself on AI tools for visual effects and filmmaking. To him, he saw it as another way of rendering that had the potential to revolutionize visual effects, much in the same way that CGI did in the 90s. So, when Seth Hallen, HPA President approached him to participate in the session, Pueringer jumped at the opportunity.

While Pueringer recognizes that many people feel concerned about the power of the technology, he explains that it is ultimately just another tool in the toolbox. Seeing this huge spectrum of reactions between fear and misconception, as well as the excitement, really motivated me to do this presentation at the HPA Tech Retreat. I really wanted to teach people the philosophies and techniques I've discovered, because online, there are a lot of people telling you what to think, and I just wanted to show the reality of it. I try to peel away all the hype and emotion and the way people build it up to sound super crazy. I want to get rid of all of that.

During the Supersession, Pueringer introduced audiences to concepts, pipelines, and even hitting on the challenges the tools can impose. He premiered Trapped in a Dream, an AI-generated animated short that served as a case study for how AI tools have incredible potential in aiding in content creation. His presentations helped to demystify many of the concerns people feel about utilizing this technology. He notes, Seeing that people were excited about what I was presenting was really gratifying. I look up to the people who attend the Tech Retreat. These professionals are truly at the top of their game. I felt a bit of imposter syndrome being a YouTube guy. Everything I do is very independent and I haven't really been a part of the studio system, so it felt very fulfilling to be recognized by those in that part of the industry.

Pueringer and his friend Sam Gorski started their production studio Corridor Digital because they, quite simply, enjoyed making short films. The shooting, production, and VFX skills they learned while making these shorts throughout junior high and high school helped prepare them for a move to Los Angeles to produce an independent monster movie. In 2010, they shifted their focus to producing ad-driven content with YouTube as their partner platform, and have been doing that ever since.

Since its inception, Corridor Digital has produced dozens of AI-generated animated videos. Their work has positioned Pueringer and Gorski as thought leaders in the evolution of the technology. When asked where he expects future developments and sees it most utilized, Pueringer explains AI, in its most general form, has been a visual effects and animation tool for many years. It's been used to clean up motion capture with an intelligent prediction system or use a camera to do a rough skeleton capture for motion capture. AI is a bit of a misnomer because it's a very broad term. What we're really talking about is just training a computer to give you a statistical result based on statistical data.

He elaborates that generative AI can be used for everything from simplifying the rotoscoping process to generating fully cohesive images. While many companies are pushing a one-size-fits-all generative AI model, it is limiting because these models can only reproduce what they have already seen before, then mix and match visual elements. If you're trying to create something that's truly new, not just a mashup of other elements, these tools won't serve you until you can train your own data in and use these models for yourself. And that's a step that I don't think people have realized is crucial and key. But we'll get there; generative and media-based AI is only about a year old. Over the next few years, people will learn the technology, it will be incorporated into production pipelines, and slowly become adopted.

With the industry shifting, Pueringer notes that what is most important for content creators is to embrace whatever tools help them realize their vision. An AI tool will only be useful to an artist if it enables them to create better. AI tools should not be doing the creativity, but rather, the tedious tasks. He states, At the end of the day, we're trying to deliver compelling movies, TV shows, and content. It's the writing, the creativity, the directing, the acting - all things that you don't use AI for.

Concludes Pueringer, I hope people feel encouraged to go out and create. It's becoming easier than it ever has been before. iPhones are starting to look amazing as video cameras. In the world of filmmaking, it might seem scary that there are thousands of different creators and channels for thousands of different niches and audiences. But that's not necessarily a bad thing. If we put aside the business aspect and just look at
See more stories from hpa

More from Hollywood Post Alliance



As the 2023 HPA Awards were taking shape last year, in the aftermath of the pand...


Time to Get Your Submissions Ready: HPA Awards Creative Categories Open June 3!

By HPA Staff The call for submissions for the HPA Engineering Excellence Awards is already open, and closes soon on June 14; but the submission period for crea...


Great Things Happen After Dark

By Christine Purse One of the most compelling discussions at the 2024 HPA Tech Retreat happened off stage with no audience present. After hours, while the room...


QTAKE Pioneers Live 3D Stream to Apple Vision Pro

QTAKE, the leading video assist and on-set collaboration software trusted by professional filmmakers worldwide, launched a new cutting-edge feature at NAB 2024....


LA County Opens Entertainment Business Interruption Fund Grant Program for Small Business, LAEDC Offers Updates

In HPA's ongoing focus on providing input and insight from city and county g...


Trailblazing AI Storytelling by Empowering Storytellers: Curious Refuge

HPA Newsline had the opportunity to speak with Caleb and Shelby Ward, founders of Curious Refuge. Caleb and Shelby were participants in the 2024 HPA Tech Retrea...


Calling All Visionaries: Enter the 2024 HPA Engineering Excellence Awards

Submissions for the 2024 HPA Engineering Excellence Awards are now being accepted. This renowned accolade recognizes and celebrates innovation and outstanding t...


QTAKE Introduces Cutting-Edge Innovations for Filmmakers.

QTAKE, the leading video assist software trusted by professional filmmakers worldwide, is proud to announce the release of its latest software update, introduci...


Talking Generative AI with Corridor Digital's Niko Pueringer

By: Alyssa Heater The 2024 HPA Tech Retreat, now in its 29th year, showcased a program chock full of presentations, panels, and roundtables spanning a wealth o...


The HPA Awards Engineering Excellence Awards: Grab the Brass Ring

Launched in 2006, the HPA Awards were designed to honor the creative and technical genius that power our industry. At that time, the behind-the-scenes talent th...


SMPTE and the IMF User Group Have Joined Forces

SMPTE , the home of media professionals, technologists, and engineers, has joined forces with the Interoperable Master Format (IMF) User Group (UG), a worldwide...


Unbreaking an Industry Begins with Honest Conversations and Better Collaboration

The industry is at breaking point in the midst of seismic change but it can survive if stakeholders act collectively starting now, urged Jeff Rosica, Presiden...


HPA President Seth Hallen Entreats Media Professionals to Lead During Era of Transformative Change

This year, I believe we are starting a new chapter, actually an entirely new pla...


Nurturing Next Gen Talent: Welcoming the 2024 Young Entertainment Professionals

In the ever-evolving landscape of the media and entertainment industry, a spotlight is cast on the Young Entertainment Professionals (YEP) program. Selected ann...


HPA Tech Retreat and MovieLabs share vision for profound change

By Adrian Pennington As HPA's Tech Retreat approaches its 30th anniversary in 2025, the event appears to be even more relevant and stronger than ever. With...


Art Directors Guild Will Induct Legendary Production Designer Lawrence G. Paull Into ADG Hall Of Fame

The Art Directors Guild (ADG, IATSE Local 800) will bestow its Hall of Fame Hono...


The HPA's Tribute to Post Short Film Shines Light on the Post-Production Community

2023 marked a year of immense challenge for the entertainment industry. The WGA ...


A Sneak Peek at HPA Tech Retreat 2024

By Debra Kaufman The HPA Tech Retreat is always a must-attend event and this year's - the 29th annual Retreat - is no exception. With robust signups alread...


Motion Picture Sound Editors to Honor Supervising Sound Editor/Sound Designer Dane A. Davis, MPSE with Career Achievement Award

The Motion Picture Sound Editors (MPSE) today announce that it will honor Superv...


HPA Tech Retreat 2024 Unveils Groundbreaking Supersession

The Hollywood Professional Association (HPA) has revealed programming details for the highly anticipated HPA Tech Retreat Supersession. This year, the Tech Retr...


HPA Tech Retreat Announces Program Details for 2024 Event

The Hollywood Professional Association (HPA) is set to embark on an extraordinary journey as it reveals the dynamic and expansive program for its much-anticipat...


The Motion Picture Sound Editors (MPSE) will honor Award-winning Director/Writer/Producer Michael Dinner with its annual Filmmaker Award

Dinner served as executive producer/showrunner/director for multiple series incl...


Celebrating Excellence: Highlights from the 2023 HPA Awards

The glitz and glamour of the post-production world took center stage earlier this week at the Television Academy's Wolf Theatre at the HPA Awards. This pres...


In Wake of Strikes, HPA Focuses on Industry Recovery

By Debra Kaufman Both the writers and actors strikes are over, after 148 days and 146 days, respectively, but the damage has been done. According to CNN, as of...


HPA Awards Unveil Creative Category Winners

Los Angeles, CA - The HPA Awards turned the spotlight on the exemplary contributions of the post production industry tonight, honoring work in color grading, so...


Sphere: The Future of Immersive Entertainment Wins Prestigious Judges Award for Creativity and Innovation

Sphere, a groundbreaking next-generation entertainment medium in Las Vegas, has ...


HPA Tech Retreat 2024 TR-X to Focus on Extreme Production

By Debra Kaufman Earlier this year, HPA board member Mark Chiolis, Mobile TV Group director of business development, heard a story of an extreme sports product...


American Cinema Editors (ACE) Announces Eligibility Dates, Ceremony Venue And Voting Timeline For The 74th Annual ACE Eddie Awards

American Cinema Editors (ACE) has announced the ceremony date, venue and the ful...


Cinema Audio Society Opens Awards Submissions for the 60th Annual CAS Awards

Submissions are now being accepted for the 60th Annual Cinema Audio Society (CAS) Awards at All entries must be received by 5 p.m. P...


HPA Honors Sphere with The Judges Award for Creativity and Innovation

The HPA Awards committee is delighted to announce that Sphere, the next-generation entertainment medium that recently opened in Las Vegas, has been awarded the ...


HPA Awards Announce 2023 Creative Category Nominations

Updated October 25, 2023 Award date and venue information revised. The Hollywood Professional Association (HPA) Awards Committee today announced nominees for ...


Transformative AI Insights from Wasabi and GrayMeta to Power Next Generation Fan Experiences

Wasabi hot cloud storage is purpose-built to store the world's data. Wasabi ...


Sohonet Unveils Advanced Collaboration Tools at IBC 2023

Sohonet, the global experts in media collaboration for the film and TV industry, announce a series of significant product updates set to redefine and streamline...


SMPTE Hollywood to Focus on Best Practices in HDR/SDR Workflows

SMPTE Hollywood Section will explore best practices for HDR/SDR workflows at its October meeting. Hosted by SMPTE Hollywood Section and Colorist Society Hollywo...


Insider Chat: ASC President Shelly Johnson Talks Upcoming Plans for the Organization

By Alyssa Heater Shelly Johnson was elected president of the esteemed American ...


Navigating Crisis: HPA's Commitment to the Media Supply Chain

By Seth Hallen, HPA President In our recently issued open letter, HPA voiced profound concern for the survival of the media creation supply chain. Our post-pro...


NAGRA Leads Industry to Navigate the Disruption' at IBC 2023

NAGRA, a KudelskiGroup (SIX:KUD.S) company and the world's leading independent provider of content protection and multiscreen television solutions, will sho...


A Fresh Experience at HPA Tech Retreat 2024

When HPA Tech Retreat 2024 arrives in February, it comes back with all the remarkable features that always make it an unparalleled event. It's about profoun...


HPA Award for Engineering Excellence Winners Announced

Updated October 25, 2023 Award date and venue information revised. A trio of recipients have been honored with the 2023 HPA Award for Engineering Excellence, ...


HPA Tech Retreat 2024 Opens Call for Proposals for Main Program and Breakfast Roundtables

The Hollywood Professional Association (HPA) has issued a call for proposals for...


Blackmagic Cloud Powers Remote Post Production on Feature Film This Closeness

Blackmagic Design announced that post production for the independent film This Closeness relied on a remote, collaborative Blackmagic Cloud driven workflow. W...


Backlight Introduces New Features and Workflow Integrations at SIGGRAPH

Global media and entertainment technology company Backlight has introduced several new features and workflow integrations across its creative-centric product li...


Key Code Media Expands West Coast with New Bay Area and Portland Offices

Key Code Media, a leading provider of audiovisual integration and production equipment solutions, is pleased to announce the opening of two new offices on the W...


AMIA to Present Copyright Symposium August 7

Archives and copyright remain inextricably linked. As technologies change, copyright continues to evolve through court rulings and legislative changes both nati...


HPA Member Event Series: Virtual Production

HPA is proud to present two seminars focusing on virtual production, supported by member companies ROE Visual and Mo-Sys. Both events have limited capacity and ...


Eluvio Provides Multimedia Web3 Movie Experience for Warner Bros. Home Entertainment's The Flash

Warner Bros. Home Entertainment, in partnership with content blockchain pioneer ...


Panavision President and CEO Kim Snyder Set for Women in Post August Lunch

Kim Snyder, president and CEO of Panavision, will be the featured speaker during the HPA Women in Post summer lunch at Marino Ristorante in Hollywood on August ...


The Industry Best Get Ready to Judge Awards 2023

Updated October 25, 2023 Award date information revised. By Christine Purse The HPA Awards have honored creatives and technologists since 2006, growing to be...