Two seminars on the growing film industry in China and theworldwide piracy problem are expected to be major draws at the upcoming ShoWest2003.

China: A View From All Perspectives will take place on March 3 - the convention's InternationalDay - when Yang Buting, CEO and chairman of the China Film Group, will delivera keynote speech addressing China's rapidly expanding film market.

Otherpanelists scheduled to appear include: Sjoerd DeClerk, managing director ofBarco Digital Systems; Ian Riches, CEO of Cinemaworks; and Barbara Robinson,managing director of Columbia Pictures Film Production, Asia.

Chinema willco-present the session, which will be moderated by Bill Murray, co-COO andexecutive vice president of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA).

"Together, we have begun the process of bringing China into thepicture," Chinema founder Keping Qiu said in a statement. "While we arepromoting a new industry in an old world, we are promoting new attitudes andnew culture that film uniquely embraces."

Featured panellists on Piracy: The World's Concern, which takes place on Mar 5, are: JackValenti, president of MPAA; Jim Gianopulos, chairman of Fox FilmedEntertainment; Millard Ochs, president of Warner Bros International Theatres;and Wang Ziqiang, deputy director-general of copyright at the NationalCopyright Administration of China. John Fithian, president of the NationalAssociation of Theatre Owners, will act as moderator and Keping Qiu willpresent a showreel called A Message From the Chinese Community.

* Ice Ageco-director Chris Wedge is to receive the ShoWest 2003 Animation Director ofthe Year Award, Mitch Neuhauser, group show director of Sunshine GroupWorldwide, which operates the annual convention, has announced.

Wedge won thebest animated short film Oscar in 1999 for Bunny, and Ice Age has been nominated for a best animatedfeature Oscar this year.

Wedge began his career as a stop-motion animator,later joining MAGI/SynthaVision, where he was one of the principal animators onDisney's Tron. Heco-founded Blue Sky Studios, which has become one of the leading computeranimation houses in the world, and has taught animation at The School of VisualArts (NY).