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‘Avatar’ Tops Visual Effects Society Noms

Honors recognize excellence in live-action, animated movies’ effects

James Cameron’s "Avatar" received 11 nominations for the eighth annual VES Awards, presented by the Visual Effects Society to recognize outstanding visual effects artistry.

Cameron had been previously announced as the recipient of this year’s VES Lifetime Achievement Award. Pixar’s Ed Catmull will receive the Georges Melies Award for pioneering.

Nominees in 23 categories of film, animation, TV, commercials and videogames were chosen by blue-ribbon panels of VES members. The awards will be handed out Feb. 28 at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel.

 “It’s important to keep in mind that it wasn’t machines that created these images but incredibly talented artists," said VES chairman Jeffrey Okun in a statement. "We congratulate them all and look forward to seeing who is chosen as the best of the best at the awards show in February.”

"District 9" and "2012" received three nominations apiece, as did animated films "Up" and "Coraline."

And the nominees are: 

 

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Visual Effects Driven Feature Motion Picture
2012
Volker Engel, visual effects supervisor
Josh Jaggars, visual effects producer
Marc Weigert, visual effects supervisor 
AVATAR
Richard Baneham, animation supervisor
Joyce Cox, VFX producer
Joe Letteri, senior visual effects supervisor
Eileen Moran, overall VFX producer 
DISTRICT 9
Stefanie Boose, VFX producer
Dan Kaufman, VFX supervisor
Peter Muyzers, on-set VFX plate supervisor
James Stewart, creature supervisor 
STAR TREK
Burt Dalton, special effects supervisor
Russell Earl, visual effects supervisor
Roger Guyett, visual effects supervisor
Shari Hanson, visual effects producer 
TRANSFORMERS: REVENGE OF THE FALLEN
Scott Benza, animation director
Wayne Billheimer, visual effects producer
Scott Farrar, visual effects supervisor
John Frazier, special effects supervisor
 
Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Feature Motion Picture
ANGELS & DEMONS
Angus Bickerton, VFX supervisor
Mark Breakspear, VFX supervisor
Ryan Cook, VFX supervisor
Barrie Hemsley, VFX producer 
THE BOX
Peter Cvijanovic, compositing supervisor
Mark Kolpak, visual effects producer
Olcun Tan, digital effects supervisor
Thomas Tannenberger, visual effects supervisor 
INVICTUS
Geoff Hancock, VFX supervisor
Dennis Hoffman, head of production
Cyndi Ochs, VFX producer
Michael Owens, VFX supervisor 
THE ROAD
Mark O. Forker, VFX supervisor
Paul Graff, VFX supervisor – Crazy Horse Effects
Ed Mendez, compositing supervisor
Phillip Moses, VFX producer
SHERLOCK HOLMES
Dan Barrow, VFX producer
Jonathan Fawkner, VFX supervisor
Chas Jarrett, VFX supervisor
David Vickery, VFX supervisor
 
Outstanding Animation in an Animated Feature Motion Picture
9
Ken Duncan, animation supervisor
Jinko Gotoh, co-producer
Daryl Graham, supervising animator
Joe Ksander, animation director 
CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS
Mike Ford, CG supervisor
Chris Juen, co-producer
Alan Hawkins, supervising animator
Pete Nash, animation director 
CORALINE
Claire Jennings, animation producer
Henry Selick, animation director 
ICE AGE: DAWN OF THE DINOSAURS
Galen Chu , supervising animator
Jeff Gabor, senior animator
Anthony Nisi, animation production supervisor
Melvin Tan, senior animator 
UP
Gary Bruins, effects supervisor
Pete Docter, director
Steve May, supervising technical director
Jonas Rivera, producer
 
Outstanding Visual Effects in a Broadcast Miniseries, Movie or a Special
ALICE – Night 2
Sebastien Bergeron, DFX supervisor
Les Quinn, CG supervisor
Lisa Sepp-Wilson, VFX producer
Lee Wilson, VFX supervisor 
BEN 10: ALIEN SWARM – Montage
Evan Jacobs, visual effects supervisor
Sean McPherson, visual effects supervisor
Andrew Orloff, visual effects supervisor 
DISNEY PREP AND LANDING – Gadgets, Globes, and Other Garish Gizmos
David Hutchins, EFX animator
Scott Kersavage, VFX supervisor
Dorothy McKim, VFX producer
Kee Suong, EFX animator 
INFESTATION
Dan DeEntremont, animator
PJ Foley, VFX producer
James May, technical director
Efram Potelle, VFX supervisor
SKELLIG
Sara Bennett, compositing supervisor
Jean-Claude Deguara, senior animation supervisor
David Houghton, visual effects supervisor
Jenna Powell, visual effects producer
 
Outstanding Visual Effects in a Broadcast Series
BATTLESTAR GALACTICA SEASON 4 – Ep. 421 “Daybreak”
Michael Gibson, VFX producer
Gary Hutzel, VFX supervisor
Dave Morton, CGI artist
Jesse Toves, CGI artist 
DEFYING GRAVITY – Pilot
Dale Fay, VFX supervisor
Jared Jones, lead compositor
Sam Nicholson, VFX producer
Mike Yip, 3D lead artist 
FRINGE – Ep. 206 “Earthling”
Robert Habros, VFX supervisor
Eric Hance, visual effects artist
Andrew Orlaff, VFX supervisor
Jay Worth, VFX supervisor/producer 
STARGATE UNIVERSE – Air
Shannon Gurney, VFX producer
Andrew Karr, CGI supervisor
Mark Savela, VFX supervisor
Craig Vandenbiggelaar, digital effects supervisor 
V- Pilot
Johnathan R. Banta, lead compositor
Karen Czukerberg, VFX producer
Andrew Orloff, VFX supervisor
Chris Zapara, VFX supervisor
 
Outstanding Supporting Visual effects in a Broadcast Program
CSI CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION – Ep. 1001 “Opening Sequence”
Sabrina Arnold, VFX producer
Steve Meyer, compositor
Rik Shorten, VFX supervisor
Derek Smith, compositor 
FLASH FORWARD – No More Good Days
Kevin Blank, visual effects supervisor
Andrew Orloff, VFX producer
Steve Meyer, 2D supervisor
Jonathan Spencer Levy, facility VFX supervisor 
KINGS – Ep. 001 “Goliath”
Ron Moore, VFX producer
Brian Vogt, lead lighting TD
Craig Weiss, VFX supervisor
Niel Wray, CG supervisor 
KRUPP-EINE DEUTSCHE FAMILIE – Krupp
Thomas Tannenberger, visual effects supervisor
Olcun Tan, digital effects supervisor
Mark Kolpak, visual effects producer
Shane Cook, compositing supervisor 
LOST – The Incident Part 1 & 2
Eric Hance, supervising artist
Samantha Mabie-Tuinstra, visual effects producer
Sean Scott, character animator
Mitch Suskin, visual effects supervisor
 
Best Single Visual Effect of the Year
2012 – Escape From L.A.
Volker Engel, visual effects supervisor
Josh R. Jaggars, visual effects producer
Mohen Leo, visual effects supervisor
Marc Weigert, visual effects supervisor 
AVATAR – Quarich’s Escape
Jill Brooks, visual effects producer
John Knoll, visual effects supervisor
Frank Losasso Petterson, simulation technical director
Tory Mercer, compositor 
AVATAR- Neytiri Drinking
Thelvin Cabezas, lighting technical director
Joyce Cox, VFX producer
Joe Letteri, senior visual effects supervisor
Eileen Moran, overall VFX producer 
KNOWING – Plane Crash
Dan Breckwoldt, lead compositor
Camille Cellucci, VFX producer
Andrew Jackson, VFX supervisor
Angelo Sahin, special effects supervisor 
TERMINATOR SALVATION – VLA Escape
Chantal Feghali, studio producer
Charles Gibson, studio visual effects supervisor
Susan Greenhow, visual effects producer
Ben Snow, visual effects supervisor
 
Outstanding Visual Effects in a Commercial
AMF – The Caterpillar
Asher Edwards, VFX producer
Jamie O’Hara, lead character modeller
Becky Porter, lead compositor
Robert Sethi, VFX supervisor 
AUDI – Intelligently Combined
Jay Barton, visual effects supervisor
Rafael F. Colon, senior compositor
Chris Fieldhouse, visual effects producer
Ronald Herbst, CG supervisor 
KERRY LOWLOW – Mouse
Ashley Bernes, effects TD
Louisa Cartwright Tucker, VFX producer
Jake Mengers, VFX supervisor
Stephen Newbold, VFX supervisor 
PEPSI – The Flight of the Penguin
Murray Butler , VFX supervisor/lead Flame
Jenn Dewey, senior VFX producer
Seth Gollub, animation lead
Andy Walker, VFX supervisor, technical lead 
PLANE STUPID – Polar Bears
Scott Griffin, VFX producer
Suzanne Jandu, compositor
Jake Mengers, VFX supervisor
Vicky Osborn, CG artist
 
Outstanding Visual Effects in a Special Venue Project
BEYOND ALL BOUNDARIES – Multi-plane visual effects
Susan Beth Smith, visual effects producer
Cedar Conner, lead compositor
Daren Ulmer, visual effects supervisor 
DANCE OF THE DRAGONS – Eastern
Derry Frost, VFX supervisor
Michael Morreale, VFX producer
 
Outstanding Real-Time Visuals in a Videogame
CALL OF DUTY: MODERN WARFARE 2 – Gulag Extraction
Robert Gaines, lead visual effects artist
David Johnson, visual effects artist
Richard Kriegler, art director
Mark Rubin, producer 
FIGHT NIGHT ROUND 4 – Gameplay
Jeff Atienza, producer
Jenny Freeman, art director
Ben Ross, lead character artist
Frank Vitz, CG supervisor 
NEED FOR SPEED SHIFT – World Sequence
Robert Dibley, lead rendering software engineer
Dave Flynn, development director – world
Andreas Moll, art director
Sven Moll, art director 
UNCHARTED 2: AMONG THIEVES
Christophe Balestra, technical lead
Evan Wells, Game producer
 
Outstanding Visual Effects in a Videogame Trailer
DJ HERO
Diarmid Harrison-Murray, VFX supervisor
Sarah Hiddlestone, senior CG producer
Jamie Jackson, game producer
Marco Puig, art director 
HALO 3: ODST – The Life
Ryan Meredith, VFX producer
Robert Moggach, VFX supervisor
Michael Pardee, executive producer
Jens Zalzala, CG supervisor
MASS EFFECT 2
Tim Miller, VFX producer
Brandon Riza, VFX supervisor 
STAR WARS: THE OLD REPUBLIC
Tim Miller, VFX producer
Brandon Riza, VFX supervisor
 
Outstanding Animated Character in a Live-Action Feature Motion Picture
AVATAR – Neytiri
Andrew R. Jones, animation director
Joe Letteri, senior visual effects supervisor
Zoe Saldana, actress
Jeff Unay, facial lead 
DISTRICT 9 – Christopher Johnson
Brett Ineson, motion capture supervisor
Jeremy Mesana, animation lead
Steve Nichols, animation supervisor
Vera Zivny, senior VFX coordinator 
G-FORCE – Bucky
Benjamin Cinelli, senior character animator
Peter Tieryas, character set-up technical director
Dustin Wicke, lead cloth and hair
Ryan Yee, animator 
WATCHMEN – Doctor Manhattan
Aaron Campbell, character rigger
Kevin Hudson, CG modeling supervisor
Victor Schutz, lead CG lighting and compositing artist
Keith Smith, lead animator
 
Outstanding Animated Character in an Animated Feature Motion Picture
CORALINE – Coraline
Travis Knight, lead animator
Trey Thomas, lead animator 
ICE AGE: DAWN OF THE DINOSAURS – Buck
Simon Pegg, Buck
Peter de Seve, characters designed by 
MONSTERS VS. ALIENS – B.O.B.
Terran Boylan, character technical director
David Burgess, head of character animation
Scott Cegielski, effects lead
David Weatherly, animator 
UP – Carl – “No Dad Scene”
Ed Asner, voice of Carl
Carmen Ngai, character cloth artist
Brian Tindall, character modeling and articulation artist
Ron Zorman, animator
 
Outstanding Animated Character in a Broadcast Program or Commercial
AMF – The Caterpillar
Steve Beck, lead character animator
Jamie O’Hara, lead character modeller
Becky Porter, lead compositor
Robert Sethi, lead CG artist 
DISNEY PREP AND LANDING – Wayne
David Foley, voice of Wayne
Mark Mitchell, supervising animator
Hidetaka Yosumi, character technical director
Leo Sanchez Barbosa, modeler 
EVIAN – Skating Babies
Jorge Montiel Meurer, lead animator
Jordi Onate, animator
Emanuele Pavarotti, animator
Wayne Simmons, animator 
PEPSI – Penguin – “The Flight of the Penguin”
James Dick, technical director
Seth Gollub, animation lead
Spencer Leuders, technical director
Andy Walker, VFX supervisor, technical lead
 
Outstanding Effects Animation in an Animated Feature Motion Picture
CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS
Rob Bredow, VFX supervisor
Matt Hausman, effects animation supervisor
Carl Hooper, effects animation supervisor
Dan Kramer, digital effects supervisor 
CORALINE
John Allan Armstrong, VFX animator
Richard Kent Burton, stop-motion effects animator
Craig Dowsett, CG modeler 
MONSTERS VS. ALIENS
David Allen, effects animator
Amaury Aubel, effects lead
Scott Cegielski, effects lead
Alain De Hoe, effects lead 
UP
Alexis Angelidis, effects artist
Eric Froemling, effects artist
Jason Johnston, effects artist
Jon Reisch, effects artist
 
Outstanding Matte Paintings in a Feature Motion Picture
AVATAR – Pandora
Jean-Luc Azzis, senior compositor
Peter Baustaedter, senior matte painter
Brenton Cottman, lead matte painter
Yvonne Muinde, lead matte painter 
FRANKLYN – Meanwhile City Scapes
Tania Richard, matte painter
Christoph Unger, matte painter 
HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF-BLOOD PRINCE
David Bassalla, TD
Emily Cobb, 3D artist
Tania Richard, matte painter 
STAR TREK
Brett Northcutt, Digimatte lead
Shane Roberts, Digimatte
Masahiko Tani, Digimatte
Dan Wheaton, Digimatte
 
Outstanding Matte Paintings in a Broadcast Program or Commercial
KAISER PERMANENTE – Emerald City
Kim Taylor, matte painter
Ben Walker, matte painter
Ben Walsh, matte painter
David Woodland, matte painter 
Outstanding Models and Miniatures in a Feature Motion Picture
AVATAR – Samson/Home Tree/Floating Mountains/Ampsuit
Simon Cheung, modeller
Paul Jenness, lead modeller
John Stevenson-Galvin, senior modeller
Rainer Zoettl, senior/lead modeller 
CORALINE
Deborah Cook, lead costume design fabricator
Matthew DeLeu, miniature lighting technician
Paul Mack, model maker
Martin Meunier, facial animation design 
NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM: BATTLE OF THE SMITHSONIAN – National Air and Space Museum Escape
Robert Chapin, digital FX supervisor
Tony Chen, model maker
Forest Fischer, model crew chief
Ian Hunter, VFX supervisor 
TERMINATOR SALVATION
Practical Models and Miniatures
Nick d’Abo, model shop supervisor
Brian Gernand, creative director, model shops
Geoff Heron, special FX supervisor
Patrick Sweeney, director of photography
 
Outstanding Created Environment in a Feature Motion Picture
2012 – Los Angeles Destruction
Haarm-Pieter Duiker, CG supervisor
Marten Larsson, CG effects animation lead
Ryo Sakaguchi, CG effects animation lead
Hanzhi Tang, CG lighting supervisor 
AVATAR – Floating Mountains
Dan Lemmon, visual effects supervisor
Keith F. Miller, CG supervisor
Cameron Smith, lead compositor 
AVATAR – Jungle/Biolume
Shadi Almassizadeh, CG supervisor
Jessica Cowley, senior texture painter
Dan Cox, CG supervisor
Ula Rademeyer, lead texture painter
Eric Saindon, visual effects supervisor 
AVATAR – Willow Glade
Thelvin Cabezas, lighting technical director
Miae Kang, lead lighting technical director
Daniel Macarin, lighting technical director
Guy Williams, visual effects supervisor
 
Outstanding Created Environment in a Broadcast Program or Commercial
AMC THEATERS / COKE – Magic Chairs
Dariush Derakhshani, CG supervisor
Steve Cummings, CG artist
Harry Michalakeas, technical director
Rob Nederhorst, VFX supervisor 
ASSASSINS CREED: LINEAGE – Ep. 1 “Duke of Milan Assassination”
Nadine Homier, compositor
Joseph Kasparlan, lead textures and lighting
Mathieu Lalonde, CG modeler
Christian Morin, compositor 
FLASH FORWARD – Pilot “Freeway Overpass”
Colin Feist, compositor
Paul Ghezzo, CG supervisor
Roger Kupelian, matte painter
Steve Meyer, compositor 
V – Pilot “Atrium and Ship Interiors”
Trevor Adams, CG artist
Chris Irving, lead compositor
David Morton, matte painter
Chris Zapara, VFX supervisor
 
Outstanding Compositing in a Feature Motion Picture
AVATAR
Erich Eder, compositor
Robin Hollander, compositor
Giuseppe Tagliavini, compositor
Erik Winquist, compositing supervisor 
AVATAR – End Battle
Jay Cooper, technical director
Beth D’Amato, digital paint
Eddie Pasquarello, compositing supervisor
Todd Vaziri, compositor 
DISTRICT 9
Janeen Elliott, senior compositor
Simon Hughes, senior compositor
Hamish Schumacher, lead compositor
Shervin Shogian, compositing supervisor 
SHERLOCK HOLMES – Wharf Explosion Sequence
Jan Adamczyk, mid compositor
Alex Cumming, junior compositor
Sam Osborne, compositor
Kate Windibank, senior compositor
 
Outstanding Compositing in a Broadcast Program or Commercial
CSI CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION – Ep 1001 Opening Sequence
Steve Meyer, VFX supervisor
Derek Smith, compositor
Christina Spring, compositor
Zach Zaubi, compositor 
KERRY LOWLOW ‘MOUSE’ – Overall
Kelly Bruce, compositor
Greg Howe-Davies, compositor
Jake Mengers, VFX supervisor
Stephen Newbold, VFX supervisor 
PEPSI – The Flight of the Penguin
Murray Butler , VFX supervisor/lead Flame
Ben Cronin, senior Flame operator
Andy Rowan-Robinson, technical director
Miyuki Shimamoto, Flame operator 
PORSCHE – Family Tree
Tim Davies, VFX supervisor/lead compositor
Jeff Willette, lead technical designer
 
Outstanding Visual Effects in a Student Project
THE FULL MOON MYSTERY – The Discovery
Flip Buttinger, VFX supervisor & producer
Jeffrey De Vore, director
David Goubitz, VFX supervisor & producer 
MOTHERLAND
Hannes Appell 
THEY WILL COME TO TOWN
Thilo Ewers 
URS – Cliff
Moritz Mayerhofer, Graduate