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‘Lion King,’ ‘Mandalorian’ Crowned With Top Prizes at VES Awards

Disney’s “The Lion King,” Disney Plus’ “The Mandalorian” and Laika’s “Missing Link” scored top honors at the 18th Visual Effects Society Awards. The annual ceremony was held Wednesday at the Beverly Hilton in Los Angeles.

The Lion King” led the way among films with three prizes, while Martin Scorsese’s “The Irishman,” Disney’s “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” and “Missing Link” each nabbed two. On the TV side, “The Mandalorian” tied with “Game of Thrones” and “Stranger Things 3.” All three shows landed three trophies.

Kicking off the night, VES Executive director Eric Roth pitched to the wider industry a higher profile for the VFX artists who create the visuals essential to success in a market growing rapidly via the streaming boom. “Make sure they are not only compensated appropriately, but make sure they are recognized appropriately as well,” he said.

Comedian Patton Oswalt returned as host, gently ribbing the audience before the first of 28 awards presentations. He joked, “You might wanna take this chance to de-age yourself if you have that technology.”

While accepting the lifetime achievement award via video, Scorsese briefly outlined his own arc of VFX use, from “Kundun” to incorporating cutting-edge de-aging effects in “The Irishman.”

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“We all realized the risk we were taking, and we knew it was the only way we could make the actual picture we needed to make the way we wanted to make it,” Scorsese said. “I want to thank all the artists I’ve worked with over the years, who’ve helped bring our stories to life — our fellow storytellers.”

The organization also presented its creative excellence award to VFX Supervisor Sheena Duggal and its visionary award to Roland Emmerich.

See the full winners list below:

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Photoreal Feature

“The Lion King”
Robert Legato
Tom Peitzman
Adam Valdez
Andrew R. Jones

Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Photoreal Feature

“The Irishman”
Pablo Helman
Mitchell Ferm
Jill Brooks
Leandro Estebecorena
Jeff Brink

Outstanding Visual Effects in an Animated Feature

“Missing Link”
Brad Schiff
Travis Knight
Steve Emerson
Benoit Dubuc

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Photoreal Episode

“The Mandalorian” – The Child
Richard Bluff
Abbigail Keller
Jason Porter
Hayden Jones
Roy K. Cancino

Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Photoreal Episode

“Chernobyl” — 1:23:45
Max Dennison
Lindsay McFarlane
Clare Cheetham
Paul Jones
Claudius Christian Rauch

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Real-Time Project

“Control”
Janne Pulkkinen
Elmeri Raitanen
Matti Hämäläinen
James Tottman

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Commercial

Hennessy: The Seven Worlds
Carsten Keller
Selçuk Ergen
Kiril Mirkov
William Laban

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Special Venue Project

“Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance”
Jason Bayever
Patrick Kearney
Carol Norton
Bill George

Outstanding Animated Character in a Photoreal Feature

“Alita: Battle Angel” — Alita
Michael Cozens
Mark Haenga
Olivier Lesaint
Dejan Momcilovic

Outstanding Animated Character in an Animated Feature

“Missing Link” — Susan
Rachelle Lambden
Brenda Baumgarten
Morgan Hay
Benoit Dubuc

Outstanding Animated Character in an Episode or Real-Time Project

“Stranger Things 3” — Tom/Bruce Monster
Joseph Dubé-Arsenault
Antoine Barthod
Frederick Gagnon
Xavier Lafarge

Outstanding Animated Character in a Commercial

Cyberpunk 2077 — Dex
Jonas Ekman
Jonas Skoog
Marek Madej
Grzegorz Chojnacki

Outstanding Created Environment in a Photoreal Feature

“The Lion King” — The Pridelands
Marco Rolandi
Luca Bonatti
Jules Bodenstein
Filippo Preti

Outstanding Created Environment in an Animated Feature

“Toy Story 4” — Antiques Mall
Hosuk Chang
Andrew Finley
Alison Leaf
Philip Shoebottom

Outstanding Created Environment in an Episode, Commercial, or Real-Time Project

“Game of Thrones” — The Iron Throne; Red Keep Plaza
Carlos Patrick DeLeon
Alonso Bocanegra Martinez
Marcela Silva
Benjamin Ross

Outstanding Virtual Cinematography in a CG Project

“The Lion King”
Robert Legato
Caleb Deschanel
Ben Grossmann
AJ Sciutto

Outstanding Model in a Photoreal or Animated Project

“The Mandalorian” — The Sin; The Razorcrest
Doug Chiang
Jay Machado
John Goodson
Landis Fields IV

Outstanding Effects Simulations in a Photoreal Feature

“Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker”
Don Wong
Thibault Gauriau
Goncalo Cababca
François-Maxence Desplanques

Outstanding Effects Simulations in an Animated Feature

“Frozen 2”
Erin V. Ramos
Scott Townsend
Thomas Wickes
Rattanin Sirinaruemarn

Outstanding Effects Simulations in an Episode, Commercial, or Real-Time Project

“Stranger Things” — Melting Tom/Bruce
Nathan Arbuckle
Christian Gaumond
James Dong
Aleksandr Starkov

Outstanding Compositing in a Feature

“The Irishman”
Nelson Sepulveda
Vincent Papaix
Benjamin O’Brien
Christopher Doerhoff

Outstanding Compositing in an Episode

“Game of Thrones” — The Long Night; Dragon Ground Battle
Mark Richardson
Darren Christie
Nathan Abbott
Owen Longstaff

Outstanding Compositing in a Commercial

“Hennessy: The Seven Worlds”
Rod Norman
Guillaume Weiss
Alexander Kulikov
Alessandro Granella

Outstanding Special (Practical) Effects in a Photoreal or Animated Project

“The Dark Crystal: The Age of Resistance” – She Knows All the Secrets
Sean Mathiesen
Jon Savage
Toby Froud
Phil Harvey

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Student Project

“The Beauty”
Marc Angele
Aleksandra Todorovic
Pascal Schelbli
Noel Winzen

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