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chad hurley    conan o'brien

Chad Hurley and Conan O’Brien in for a Wilde Night 

12 September 2013.  Chad Hurley and Conan O’Brien will be honored at the annual “Oscar Wilde:  Honoring the Irish in Film” event which will be held on 27 February at J.J. Abrams’ Bad Robot production company in Santa Monica.  The annual event, hosted by the US-Ireland Alliance brings together people in the entertainment industries from Ireland and the US.

Looking for a way to share videos with his friends, Chad Hurley co-founded YouTube in 2005.  Eight years later, 100 hours of video is uploaded onto the site each minute and the number of unique users visiting every month has reached 1 billion.  US-Ireland Alliance president Trina Vargo said that Hurley was being honored because, “In creating YouTube, Chad Hurley democratized film-making.  He gave everyone with a video camera, a screen on which to put their work, tell their stories, and the chance to reach a global audience.”

Referred to in Forbes as ‘the new Hollywood,’ YouTube is part of the shifting landscape of content development and delivery.  In 2006, YouTube was purchased by Google.  In 2008, MGM, Lionsgate, and CBS began posting films and television on YouTube. In 2010, YouTube introduced an online film rentals service in the US, Canada and the UK. Hurley stepped down as CEO in 2010.  He and his YouTube cofounder, Steve Chen, recently launched Avos, a new digital media creation and discovery company that includes MixBit, a video creation app -- a way for movie content to be created, mixed and edited around the world.   

By 1988, the talents of Harvard graduate, HBO writer and improv performer Conan O’Brien had come to the attention of Lorne Michaels, executive producer of "Saturday Night Live."  Michaels hired O'Brien as a writer and his work on "SNL" was recognized with an Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing in a Comedy or Variety Series.

O'Brien spent two years as a writer/producer for the Fox series, "The Simpsons." In 1993, Lorne Michaels tapped O'Brien to succeed David Letterman as the host of "Late Night" on NBC.  Hosting the show until 2009, O'Brien and his team were honored with an Emmy for Outstanding Comedy-Variety Series and six Writer's Guild Awards for Best Writing in a Comedy/Variety Series.

In 2010, O’Brien Iaunched a new talk show, "CONAN," with the cable network TBS.  In honoring O’Brien, Vargo noted, “Talk shows are instrumental to the way the public learns about films and those who inhabit them.  Conan deploys his humor, intelligence and talent in the promotion of films.  And there is also the matter of needing to settle his claim that he is the owner of O’Brien’s Castle on the Cliffs of Moher.”

Accenture is a major sponsor of the event.

Follow breaking news on the event on Twitter at @OscarWildeLA14

For information about sponsoring the event contact Alliance president Trina Vargo vargo@us-irelandalliance.org