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'Gravity' Tops the Visual Effects Society Awards

"Frozen" wins the four awards in animated features, while "The Lone Ranger" collects the honor for outstanding supporting VFX in a feature.

Gravity — widely expected to win the Oscar in visual effects -- was the big winner at the 12th annual Visual Effects Society Awards, winning six awards including the top category of outstanding visual effects in a visual effects-driven feature.

Gravity also won awards for compositing, virtual cinematography, created environment, models, and FX and simulation animation. The VFX were created at London-based Framestore, led by Framestore VFX supervisor, Tim Webber.

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The Weta team that created the The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug's dragon, Smaug, won the award for best animated character in a live-action feature, topping nominees that included Gravity's Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock).

Industrial Light & Magic's work on The Lone Ranger won the award for outstanding supporting VFX.

Since the VES Awards were first handed out in 2002, the winner of the top category of outstanding visual effects in a VFX-driven feature has gone on to win the visual effects Oscar in eight of the past 11 years. Once, the Oscar went to the winner in the VES' supporting VFX category (Hugo). The films nominated for the Oscar in VFX are Gravity, along with Iron Man 3, The Hobbit, Star Trek Into Darkness and The Lone Ranger.  

Disney's   Frozen won the four awards for an animated feature, including outstanding VFX, animated character, created environment, and FX and simulation animation.

In the television categories, Game of Thrones won three awards including outstanding VFX in a broadcast program.

During the ceremony, Sandra Bullock presented the VES Visionary Award to Gravity director Alfonso Cuaron. "The real visionaries are the people who made this movie, like Tim Webber and Framestore," the director said, adding that this is a "historic time in filmmaking."

Douglas Trumbull presented the Lifetime Achievement Award to VFX innovator John Dykstra, who won Oscars for Star Wars and Spider-Man 2.

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Also during the ceremony, VES chair Jeff Okun introduced a tribute to stop-motion pioneer Ray Harryhausen, who passed away in 2013.

The complete list of nominees is below, with winners in bold.

 

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Visual Effects-Driven Feature Motion Picture

Gravity-WINNER

Tim Webber

Nikki Penny

Chris Lawrence

Richard McBride

 

Iron Man 3

Christopher Townsend

Mark Soper

Guy Williams

Bryan Grill

 

Pacific Rim

John Knoll

Susan Greenhow

Chris Raimo

Hal Hickel

 

Star Trek Into Darkness

Roger Guyett

Luke O'Byrne

Ron Ames

Ben Grossman

 

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

Joe Letteri

Eric Saindon

Kevin Sherwood

David Clayton

 

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Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Feature Motion Picture

The Lone Ranger-WINNER

Tim Alexander

Gary Brozenich

Shari Hanson

Kevin Martel

 

Rush

Jody Johnson

Moriah Etherington-Sparks

Mark Hodgkins

Antoine Moulineau

 

The Great Gatsby

Chris Godfrey

Prue Fletcher

Joyce Cox

 

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

Guillaume Rocheron

Kurt Williams

Monette Dubin

Ivan Moran

 

The Wolf of Wall Street

Robert Legato

Mark Russell

Joseph Farrell

Lisa Spence

 

White House Down

Marc Weigert

Volker Engel

Julia Frey

Ollie Rankin

 

Outstanding Animation in an Animated Feature Motion Picture

 

Frozen-WINNER

Chris Buck

Jennifer Lee

Peter Del Vecho

Lino Di Salvo

 

Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2

Peter Nash

Michael Ford

Chris Juen

Mandy Tankenson

 

Despicable Me 2

Chris Meledandri

Janet Healy

Chris Renaud

Pierre Coffin

 

Monsters University

Kori Rae

Sanjay Bakshi

Jon Reisch

Scott Clark

 

The Croods

Jane Hartwell

Chris Sanders

Kirk Demicco

Markus Manninen

 

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Broadcast Program

 

Game of Thrones: Valar Dohaeris-WINNER

Steve Kullback

Joe Bauer

J√∂Rn Gro√üHans

Sven Martin

 

Agents of SHIELD: Pilot

Mark Kolpack

Sabrina Arnold

David Altenau

H Haden Hammond

 

Almost Human

Jay Worth

Robert Habros

Michael Cliett

David Beedon

 

Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome

Gary Hutzel

Michael Gibson

Derek Ledbetter

Heather McAuliff

 

Inseparable: Chernobyl

Egor Olesov

Egor Borschevsky

Dmitry Ovcharenko

Mykhailo Datsyk

 

Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Broadcast Program

 

Banshee: Pilot -WINNER

Armen Kevorkian

Mark Skowronski

Jeremy Jozwik

Ricardo Ramirez

 

Da Vinci's Demons: The Lovers

Kevin Blank

Simon Frame

Ante Dekovic

Oliver Arnold

 

Hawaii 5-0: Ho'onani Makuakane

Armen Kevorkian

Alexander Soltes

Jane Sharvina

Andranik Taranyan

 

Mob City: A Guy Walks Into a Bar

Jason Sperling

Michael Morreale

Valeri Pfahning

Mike Enriquez

 

Moonfleet: Episode 2

Ed Bruce

Alan Collins

John O'Connell

Joe Courtis

 

The Borgias: Relics

Wojciech Zielinski

Neishaw Ali

Bill Halliday

Jp Giamos

 

Outstanding Real-Time Visuals in a Video Game

 

Call of Duty: Ghosts-WINNER

Mark Rubin

Richard Kriegler

David Johnson

Alessandro Nardini

 

Crysis 3

Magnus Larbrant

Tiago Sousa

Steven Bender

Cevat Yerli

 

Killzone Shadow Fall

Marijn Giesbertz

Jan-Bart Van Beek

Angie Smets

 

NBA 2K14

Heather Marshall

Joseph Clark

Jeff Thomas

Anton Dawson

 

Ryse: Son of Rome

Cevat Yerli

Peter Gornstein

Chris Evans

Brian Chambers

 

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Commercial

 

PETA: 98% Human-WINNER

Angus Kneale

Vince Baertsoen

Colin Blaney

Kyle Cody

 

Call of Duty: Epic Night Out

Leighton Greer

Robert Sethi

Felix Urquiza

Chris Knight

 

Galaxy Chauffeur

Helen Hughes

Simon French

William Bartlett

Stephen Cullingford

 

Liberty Group Limited: Answer

James Atkinson

Rachel Mariscal

Scott Meadows

David Liu

 

Sony PlayStation: Perfect Day

Charlotte Arnold

Joji Tsuruga

Gavin Wellsman

Olivier Mitonneau

 

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Special Venue Project

 

Space Shuttle Atlantis-WINNER

Daren Ulmer

John Gross

Cedar Connor

Christian Bloch

 

Hayden Planetarium's Dark Universe

Vivian Trakinski

Jon Parker

Carter Emmart

Andreas Wetteborn

 

Mysteries of the Unseen World

Sean Phillips

Andy Yamada

Fred Pienkos

Matthew Sugars

Mystic Manor

Tim Landry

John Guerra

Mark Schirmer

Ken Horii

 

SpongeBob SquarePants 4D: The Great Jelly Rescue!

Kate Crandall

Brent Young

Michael "Oz" Smith

Andrei Brovcenco

 

Outstanding Animated Character in a Live-Action Feature Motion Picture

 

The Hobbit: The Desolation of SmaugSmaug-WINNER

Eric Reynolds

David Clayton

Myriam Catrin

Guillaume Francois

 

Gravity

Max Solomon

Mathieu Vig

Michael Brunet

David Shirk

 

Oz the Great and Powerful: China Girl

Troy Saliba

In-Ah Roediger

Carolyn Vale

Kevin Souls

 

Pacific Rim

Jakub Pistecky

Frank Gravatt

Cyrus Jam

Chris Havreberg

 

Outstanding Animated Character in an Animated Feature Motion Picture

 

Frozen: Bringing the Snow Queen to Life-WINNER

Alexander Alvarado

Joy Johnson

Chad Stubblefield

Wayne Unten

 

Epic: Bomba

Thom Roberts

Haven Gordon Cousins

Tim Bower

Daniel Lima

 

Epic: Mary Katherine

Jeff Gabor

Dylan C. Maxwell

Sang Jun Lee

Chris Pagoria

 

The Croods: Eep

Line Andersen

Won Young Byun

Koji Morihiro

Chris De St. Jeor

 

Outstanding Animated Character in a Commercial or Broadcast Program

 

 

PETA: 98% Human-WINNER

Vince Baertsoen

Alex Allain

Henning Koczy

 

Game of Thrones: Raising the Dragons

Philip Meyer

Ingo Schachner

Travis Nobles

Florian Friedmann

 

Smithwick's: Squirrel

Tom Bussell

Jorge Montiel

Tom Raynor

Leonardo Costa

 

Three, The Pony

Carsten Keller

Jake Mengers

Tim Van Hussen

 

Toy Story of Terror

Paul Aichele

Kiki Mei Kee Poh

Andrew Coats

 

Outstanding Created Environment in a Live-Action Feature Motion Picture

 

Gravity - Exterior-WINNER

Paul Beilby

Kyle McCulloch

Stuart Penn

Ian Comley

 

Elysium: Torus

Votch Levi

Joshua Ong

Barry Poon

 

Gravity - Interior

Harry Bardak

Nathan Walster

Jonathan Fawkner

Claire Michaud

 

Iron Man 3

John Stevenson-Galvin

Greg Notzelman

Paul Harris

Justin Stockton

 

Pacific Rim: Virtual Hong Kong

Johan Thorngren

Jeremy Bloch

David Meny

Polly Ing

 

Outstanding Created Environment in an Animated Feature Motion Picture

 

Frozen: Elsa's Ice Palace-WINNER

Virgilio John Aquino

Alessandro Jacomini

Lance Summers

David Womersley

 

Epic: Pod Patch

Aaron Ross

Travis Price

Jake Panian

Antelmo Villarreal

 

Monsters University

Robert Kondo

Eric Andraos

Dale Ruffolo

Peter Sumanaseni

 

The Croods: The Maze

Jonathan Harman

Violette Sacre-Shaik

Benjamin Venancie

Philippe Brochu

 

Outstanding Created Environment in a Commercial or Broadcast Program

 

Game of Thrones: The Climb-WINNER

Patrick Zentis

Mayur Patel

Nitin Singh

Tim Alexander

 

Hell on Wheels: Big Bad Wolf

Steve Meyer

Matt Von Brock

Mitch Gates

Antonio Chang

 

Inseparable: Chernobyl

Dmitry Ovcharenko

Igor Chopenko

Dmitry Eremenko

Andrey Bogdanov

 

Liberty Group Limited: Answer

Greg Teegarden

Kevin Bouchez

Brian Creasey

Kurt Lawson

 

Outstanding Virtual Cinematography in a Live-Action Feature Motion Picture

 

Gravity-WINNER

Tim Webber

Emmanuel Lubezki

Richard McBride

Dale Newton

 

Iron Man 3

Mark Smith

Aaron Gilman

Thelvin Cabezas

Gerardo Ramirez

 

Man of Steel

Daniel Paulsson

Edmund Kolloen

Joel Prager

David Stripinis

 

Pacific Rim: Hong Kong Ocean Brawl

Colin Benoit

Nick Walker

Adam Schnitzer

Victor Schutz

 

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

Christian Rivers

Phil Barrenger

Mark Gee

Thelvin Tico Cabezas

 

Outstanding Virtual Cinematography in a Live-Action Commercial or Broadcast Program

 

The Crew-WINNER

Dominique Boidin

Remi Kozyra

Leon Berelle

Maxime Luere

 

Mad Max: Ethos

Aladino Debert

Neil Huxley

David Liu

Michael Harbour

Murdered: Soul Suspect

Vernon Wilbert

Tim Jones

Rafael Colon

April Warren

 

Qualcomm Snapdragon: A Dragon Is Coming

Joshua Wassung

Shannon Justison

Shayne Ryan

Seth Gollub

 

Outstanding Models in a Feature Motion Picture

 

Gravity-WINNER

Ben Lambert

Paul Beilby

Chris Lawrence

Andy Nicholson

 

Pacific Rim

David Fogler

Alex Jaeger

Aaron Wilson

David Behrens

 

Star Trek Into Darkness

Bruce Holcomb

Ron Woodall

John Goodson

Thomas Fejes

 

The Lone Ranger: Colby Locomotive

Rene Garcia

Steve Walton

Brian Paik

Gerald Gutschmidt

 

Outstanding FX and Simulation Animation in a Live-Action Feature Motion Picture

Gravity: Parachute and ISS Destruction-WINNER

Alexis Wajsbrot

Sylvain Degrotte

Horacio Mendoza

Juan-Luis Sanchez

 

Man of Steel

Brian Goodwin

Gray Horsfield

Mathieu Chardonnet

Adrien Toupet

 

Pacific Rim: Fluid Simulation & Destruction

Ryan Hopkins

Michael Balog

Patrick Conran

Rick Hankins

 

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

Areito Echevarria

Andreas Soderstrom

Ronnie Menahem

Christoph Sprenger

 

Outstanding FX and Simulation Animation in an Animated Feature Motion Picture

 

Frozen: Elsa's Blizzard-WINNER

Eric W. Araujo

Marc Bryant

Dong Joo Byun

Tim Molinder

 

Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2

Andrew Hofman

Alex Moaveni

 

Epic: Boggan Crowds

Thierry Dervieux-Lecocq

David Gatenby

Mark Adams

Matthew D. Simmons

 

The Croods

Jeff Budsberg

Andre Le Blanc

Jason Mayer

Michael Losure

 

Outstanding FX and Simulation Animation in a Commercial or Broadcast Program

 

PETA: 98% Human-WINNER

Vince Baertsoen

Jimmy Gass

Dave Barosin

 

Sony PlayStation: Perfect Day

Joji Tsuruga

Gavin Wellsman

Nick Couret

Hassan Taimur

 

Toyota Avalon: Formula

Ed Laag

Eugene Gauran

Josh Hatton

 

Toy Story of Terror

Jane Yen

Rogan Griffin

Amit Baadkar

Keith Daniel Klohn

 

Outstanding Compositing in a Feature Motion Picture

 

Gravity-WINNER

Mark Bakowski

Anthony Smith

Theodor Groeneboom

Adrian Metzelaar

 

Elysium

Jean Lapointe

Jordan Benwick

Robin Hackl

Janeen Elliott

 

Iron Man 3: Barrel of Monkeys

Michael Maloney

Francis Puthanangadi

Justin van der Lek

Howard Cabalfin

 

Iron Man 3: House Attack

Darren Poe

Stefano Trivelli

Josiah Howison

Zach Zaubi

 

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

Charles Tait

Robin Hollander

Giuseppe Tagliavini

Sean Heuston

 

Outstanding Compositing in a Broadcast Program

 

Game of Thrones: The Climb-WINNER

Kirk Brillon

Steve Gordon

Geoff Sayer

Winston Lee

 

Banshee: Pilot

Gevork Babityan

Andranik Taranyan

Matt Kelly

Matthieu Perin

 

The Conquering of Yunkai

Sean Faden

Greg Szafranski

Florian Friedmann

Travis Nobles

 

Vikings: Dispossessed

Ovidiu Cinazan

Gary Couto

Marco Lee

Maria Gordon

 

Outstanding Compositing in a Commercial

 

Call of Duty: Epic Night Out-WINNER

Chris Knight

Daniel Thuresson

Nick Tayler

Dag Ivarsory

 

Jean-Paul Gaultier: The Sailor

Jerome Billet

Arnaud Leviez

 

Mercedes Sensations

Laurent Creusot

Pierre Emmanuel Genin

David Roubah

Damien Canameras

 

Sony PlayStation: Greatness Awaits

Kyle Cody

Dan Difelice

 

Sony PlayStation: Perfect Day

Gavin Wellsman

John Mangia

Leonardo Costa

Kristen Johnson

 

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Student Project

 

Initium

Alexandre Dechel

Adrien Lambert

Larochette Emeric

James Ross-Greetham

 

Morphium

Linus Stetter

 

Rugbybugs-WINNER

Alexandra Stautmeister

 

Runaway

Ludovic Frege

Quentin Medda

Romain Chauliac

Yoann Gouraud

 

Where the Dream Begins

Dun Ma

Dan Wen Lei

Xuan Xia

 

Email: Carolyn.Giardina@THR.com
Twitter: @CGinLA