Alex McDowell



ALEX MCDOWELL is one of the most innovative and influential production designers working in narrative media. His work with Steven Spielberg for the film Minority Report helped to change the nature of film design from analogue to digital, and to set forth the notion of immersive design that emphasizes the key role of world building in storytelling. Alex is a professor at the School of Cinematic Arts, USC, where he is the director of the World Building Media Lab (WbML)) and the creative director of 5D Institute, an interdisciplinary group of professionals engaged in the dissemination, education, and appreciation of the future of narrative media through World Building.

World building

Alex re-imagines cinematic and interactive work flow, to transmute the 20th century linear industrial model of pre-production, production, and post-production into a 21st century nonlinear, iterative, integrated and persistent process. His work creates a dynamic space for all narrative media, which will open up a new world for cross-media and multi-platform research. This research defines an experiential, collaborative and interdisciplinary practice that integrates imagination and emergent technologies, creating new narratives from inception through iteration and prototyping, into multimedia making. Through story logic and a redefined multi-user viewpoint in counterpoint to experience and environment, World Building allows us to actualize the imagination, and terraform worlds.