Cable Vet Takes Helm of MovieLabs

Ex-Comcast engineering exec John Carney has been named president and CEO of Motion Picture Laboratories Inc. (MovieLabs), an independent, non-profit research and development joint venture started up by Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Twentieth Century Fox Film, Universal City Studios, Walt Disney Pictures and Television and Warner Bros. Entertainment.

Carney will oversee R&D for Palo Alto, Calif.-based MovieLabs, which provides universities, corporations, startups and service operators with technical guidance and funding to explore new ways “to facilitate the legal flow of motion pictures as consumer media” and to deter piracy.  Some areas of focus include the digital distribution of movies, the development of a common metadata specification for use in other specs, including UltraViolet, and the development of technologies aimed at reducing illegal "camcording" in movie theaters. MovieLabs, along with CableLabs, Comcast and Rovi, is also a founding member of Entertainment ID Registry (EIDR), a group that has developed unique identifiers for movie and television assets.

Before joining MovieLabs, Carney was SVP of engineering at Comcast. He also played a central role in establishing CableLabs’  west coast office in San Francisco as part of an effort to help the cable R&D house connect with the area’s high-tech community (CableLabs is in the process of opening a new facility in Silicon Valley by mid-2013). 

Before that, Carney was president of TVWorks, a video software joint venture of Comcast and Cox that is has since become a wholly owned subsidiary of Comcast.  Carney also co-founded and served as CTO of MetaTV, an interactive television software company that TVWorks acquired in 2005.