Producers Guild of America Creates New Innovation Award Honoring AR, VR Accomplishments

In addition to virtual and augmented reality, the award will honor experiential and other emerging media endeavors

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The Producers Guild of America on Wednesday announced the creation of a new award that will honor entertainment endeavors across virtual and augmented reality, as well as experiential and other emerging media.

The new PGA Innovation Award, created in time for the 31st Annual Producers Guild Awards in January 2020, will be awarded to the production of a noteworthy, impactful new media program that significantly elevates the audience viewing experience, according to the guild.

The PGA said that it hopes to pinpoint with the winning submission, a production that challenges the limits of standard formats and drives forward the industry’s perception and application of new media in an entertainment context.

“As producers and storytellers, we recognize that it is important to embrace change in a time of expansion and exploration of new ideas in entertainment,” PGA co-presidents Gail Berman and Lucy Fisher said in a statement. “This new award will allow our members to celebrate the innovations we are making as producers to further the advancement of content through new technology and platforms.”

Entries will be reviewed and voted on by a jury of experts in the field of new media. The PGA said the inaugural Innovation Award jury may include:

  • Kim Adams (Co-founder, Adventure Lab)
  • Nancy Bennett (Chief Creative Officer and founding member, Two Bit Circus)
  • Thomas Geraghty (Director, Technology & Innovation, Universal Parks)
  • Doug Herzog (Consultant, Quibi)
  • Lisa Hsia (Executive Vice President, Bravo, Oxygen, Universal Kids Digital Media)
  • Lori McCreary (Chief Executive Officer, Clickstar, Inc.; Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Revelations Entertainment)
  • Dr. Jacquelyn Ford Morie (Founder and Chief Scientist, All These Worlds LLC.)
  • Joanna Popper (Global Head of VR for Location Based Experience, Hewlett Packard)
  • Yelena Rachitsky (Executive Producer of Experiences at Oculus)
  • Albert “Skip” Rizzo (Director for Medial Virtual Reality, USC Institute for Creative Technologies)
  • Ira Rubenstein (Chief Digital & Marketing Officer, Public Broadcasting Service)
  • Sam Russo (Vice President, Attraction Development, Herschend Family Entertainment)
  • Ted Schilowitz (Futurist in Residence, Paramount Pictures & 20th Century Fox)
  • Christina Lee Storm (Vice President of Business Operations, Strategy and Emerging Technology, DreamWorks Animation)
  • Shelby Jiggets-Tivony (Vice President, Creative & Advanced Development, Disney Parks Live Entertainment – Walt Disney Imagineering

The award, along with other key awards, will be given out at a nominee celebration prior to the Producers Guild Awards show.

The application period is open now and the deadline for submission is November 15. The rules and applications are available at the Producers Guild of America’s website.