Ellen Coss is a 35-year veteran in computer generated imagery, starting her career at the seminal Digital Productions, when most people said, “what’s digital.”
In the 1980s feature films were not using computer imagery, but theme park attractions and commercials were. Working with her mentor Sherry McKenna she became the production manager of the film for Florida’s Universal Park Attraction, “The Funtastic World of Hanna Barbera”. The film, a motion-based race through three of Hanna Barbera’s cartoon worlds employed computer backgrounds and 2D characters, optically composited. This was one of the first projects to combine 2D and 3D animation.
Ellen then joined Rhythm & Hues as a producer for theme park attraction films such as “Seafari”, which won first place at Imagina that year. She later became the Executive Producer of the theme park division working on large format and 3D projects such as “Star Trek the Experience” and “Race to Atlantis”.
As many of the projects she worked on pushed the technology of the day, Disney Feature Animation hired Ellen to produce their theme park attraction films. “Magic Lamp”, which employed exaggerated squash and stretch techniques common in 2D but not common in cg, and “Mickey’s Philharmagic”, a stereoscopic film which took nine of Disney’s beloved 2D characters and created them in 3D for the first time.
Ellen then joined Dreamworks, as a Production Executive, where she helped the studio transition from 2D to 3D. Subsequently she was the Associate Producer on the feature film “Over the Hedge” and then rejoining Dreamworks after a stint overseas to produce several Kung Fu Panda projects.
Ellen continued her career working as one of the first hires at Illumination Ent. and Warner Animation Group, as well as consulting on feature film projects at Sony Pictures Animation and Aardman to name a few. Just before joining Spire Ellen completed work on films for the new “Jurassic Park Ride”, which was nominated for a VES award and “The Secret Life of Pets” Ride, including a real time section where the guests are puppies.
After work you can find Ellen in Griffith Park hiking with her dog Marlowe.