Issue VI
Entertainment Industries Council, Inc.
October 2010
A Spotlight Message from Brian Dyak
EIC President and CEO

October has been a month full of engineering feats and features.  Dozens of American engineers gathered in Chile to pull off the daring and precarious rescue of 33 miners who had been trapped underground for more than two months.  Google and Department of Defense engineers have almost perfected a self-driving car.  And, most importantly in terms of the future of engineering, the inagural USA Science and Engineering Festival kicked off on October 10.  With satellite festivals in over 20 states and an enormous expo on and around the National Mall last weekend, engineering should be on everyone's minds this month.

If you don't want to miss out on the developing trend, read on for facts, depiction suggestions and engineer biographies that are the perfect spring board for a new storyline or character. 

Speaking of cool characters, we think that Abby Sciuto from NCIS is a pretty awesome scientist and we are thrilled to have the actress who portrays her, Pauley Perrette, promote the importance of science, engineering and technology through our "Ready on the S.E.T. and...ACTION!" campaign.  The brand-new
campaign includes public service spots, and the important Call For Entries for the  new Science, Engineering, Technology Award recognizing the accurate depiction of these fields in entertainment and news programming.  The awards even include a special Journalism category.  So far, we have over 70 hours of programming submitted with more on the way.  For more information on the awards, contact EIC's Executive Vice President, Larry Deutchman ( and don't miss Pauley's public service spot HERE.

Get inspired!

This Just In...
The world of the Jetsons is approaching! Robot vacuums can clean our carpets;  new cell phones make video calls a simple reality and Google recently teamed up with the Department of Defense's DARPA engineers to road-test a fleet of specially designed cars that drive themselves.The retrofitted Toyota Priuses use video cameras, rad
ar sensors and the Google Maps database to navigate even the busiest streets.  In the most recent tests, the trained drivers and software monitors were along for the ride but let the sophisticated machinery do most of the navigation as the fleet took on the scenic Pacific Coast Highway, San Francisco's steep and curvy Lombard Street and busy intersections.  Google hopes to reduce traffic related fatalities, increase car sharing and transform transportation, although a production-ready model won't be available for some time.  But when it does appear on the market, we predict family car trips turning into family movie days - just on the road!


An international group of engineers gathered at the San Jose Mine in Chile over the past two months to design and build the shaft and escape vehicle that ultimately rescued the 33 trapped miners, who had spent over two months underground following a mine collapse in August.  NASA engineer  and former submarine captain, Clinton Cragg, was called on to design the tiny escape capsule that shuttled the miners to the Earth's surface two weeks ago.  Accurate measurements and careful calculations were crucial to ensure that the drills and pipes leading to the miners didn't cause a second collapse or further endanger their lives.  

As the last miner emerged on that October night, it was clear that the engineering of one the world's most closely watched rescue missions had been a success.  The Entertainment Industries Council congratulates the engineers who made it happen!

Self-Driving Cars

Photo Credits: Hugo Infante/Government of Chile

Real Stories
Reid Bronson
Flight Control Engineer, F/A-18 Super Hornet & F-15 Eagle
B.S. in Aerospace Engineering, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
M.S. in Aerospace Engineering, Washington University, St. Louis
Reid's family has strong roots in aviation.  His grandfather during World War II was a mechanic on PBY Catalinas and later was part of the first Navy helicopter squadron.  During this time he worked with famed engineers Igor Sikorsky and Frank Piasecki.  After retiring from the Navy his grandfather moved to St. Louis to work for McDonnell Douglas as manager on the F-4 Phantom II and later the F-15 Eagle.
As Reid grew up and visited air museums with his father he was amazed to see the planes that had carried his grandfather safely through war and those that he in turn helped build to do the same. Reid was also inspired by how aerospace was portrayed in a vast array of films such as historical dramas like The Right Stuff showing America's passion to go farther, higher, faster and fantasy films like Star Wars in which Luke Skywalker destroys the Death Star in his highly maneuverable X-Wing fighter.
Today, Reid works for the same company that his grandfather once worked for.  As a Boeing Flight Control Engineer, his job is to ensure that the men and women who fly in an F/A-18 Super Hornet or F-15 Eagle maintain highly maneuverable aircraft characteristics no matter where they fly, how fast they fly, or who they fly against. The best part of his job as an engineer is talking to the men and women who pilot the aircraft and hearing how well the aircraft has been engineered to allow them to perform their job and bring them home safely.  Also, nothing beats the sight and sound of a fighter jet making a low altitude supersonic fly-by.

Creative Applications

superhornet     * Reid carries on an important tradition in his family by furthering the field of American aviation.  Engineering, on its own, is often an abstract or confusing concept for the average television or movie viewer.  But, when it is portrayed in the context of aviation and a family's passion for planes, helicopters and fighter jets, it becomes possible to see engineering as a means to a very awesome end.  Consider portraying how engineers have been and continue to be responsible for some of the coolest developments in aviation history.

     * Reid's career is testament to the power of films to encourage young people to pursue fields such as engineering.  The Star Wars series and The Right Stuff were films that helped a young boy envision the excitement and potential for a career in aviation engineering.  You may not realize that your science-fiction films or action-comedies are influencing the futures of your audience members, but they are!  Remember to use EIC's First Draft services so that your films are not just awe-inspiring, but accurate. 

For more information, statistics, creative applications, depiction suggestions and the opportunity to talk to Reid about your story, contact our First Draft services.

Darrell Marmion

Liaison Engineer

B.S. Mechanical Engineering, University of Washington

Darrell was raised on a farm just outside of Yakima, Washington and quickly learned the meaning of hard work and how to use his imagination to solve technical problems with minimal resources.  He had to create new tools or repair equipment with the materials his family had.

Darrell's formal education started at Washington State University where he initially pursued business because he thought it would be easy to get a business degree. After realizing it wouldn't be so easy, he switched to his true passion, mathematics and engineering, and graduated from the University of Washington with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. Darrell received job offers from three companies at graduation:  Boeing, McDonnell Douglas and Rocketdyne.

Darrell accepted the position at Boeing as an engineer performing analysis for fuel systems on the NASA High Speed Commercial Transport program.  He thought it would be a great job because the work was analytical but after a year Darrell began to consider other areas of engineering.

The turning point for Darrell occurred when he took a tour of the Boeing 757 factory in Renton.  He struck up a conversation with an engineer working on landing gear.  He helped the engineer find the problem area and discussed ways to fix it.  At that point, Darrell realized that he had found his dream job - a Liaison Engineer - a career where he could use his technical training and experience to solve issues on the factory floor.  Two months later he transferred to the Boeing 747-400 program.

Twenty-one years later, Darrell is solving technical problems on aircraft.  But what has changed over the years is the scope of the work - from working on one hydraulic tube to performing aircraft modification work.  He became one of the lead engineers on the Everett Flight Line responsible for delivering Boeing 747/767/777 airplanes.  Later his work expanded to being the lead engineer responsible for modification projects around the world including freighter conversions in Israel, Alabama, Singapore, China and the biggest of all - the 747 Large Cargo Freighter also known as the "Dream Lifter" in Taiwan.

Speaking of his work, Darrell said, "My career has been extremely rewarding because of the opportunities opened by engineering.  I am currently leading the Boeing 747-8 "Follow the Airplane" Team which is providing Liaison Engineering support for the 747-8 program from design, to supplier fabrication, to factory build, and soon, into flight test."  All these years later, he is still looking forward to more travel and rewarding experiences.


Creative Applications

     * Darrell connects his interest in engineering to his childhood on a farm; unlike his colleague Reid, he didn't grow up around aviation experts or engineers.  Instead, he realized that the the creativity and innovation required of a farmboy could be translated into a fantastic and exciting engineering career.  Consider depicting how the demands of farm life can lead to a unique capability in science, engineering or technology.  While fewer Americans live on farms today, the wholesome rural lifestyle has been so idealized throughout our country's history that even the most urban families will not be able to resist your story.

     * Darrell's position as a liason engineer requires him to travel internationally and visit countries with vastly different cultures, all while helping manufactu
rers to solve crucial technical problems.  The depiction opportunities for a liason engineer are endless.  Consider depicting a jet-setting engineer travelling worldwide to fix complex technical problems.

Remember that you have access to Darrell's expertise through the First Draft services!
Don't Forget...
Need Ideas? Writing tips? Statistics and facts? 
    Want to incorporate the newest engineering technology  into your show?  

rst Draft
for the Ready on the S.E.T. and...Action! Initiative is a service that links YOU, the creative community, to science, engineering and technology experts during the development and production of entertainment content.

So far, over a dozen engineers - aerospace, chemical, mechanical, aviation and more! -  have been trained to provide advice and suggestions to entertainment industry professionals interested in engineering.

Interested in learning more about how our
First Draft program can contribute to your next story line?  Click here.

In Case You Missed Them...

Issue I
Issue II
Issue III
Issue IV
Issue V

 And Don't Miss Out in the Future...

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