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DWA Celebrates Animators, VFX Artists at Annual Brunch

Attendees include Chris Miller, Jennifer Yuh Nelson, Rob Legato and Joe Letteri.

DreamWorks Duo: Jennifer Yuh Nelson & Chris Miller
Jason Merritt/Getty Images; Kevin Winter/Getty Images

“It really is a proud moment when we all come together and recognize the best work that has been done by the most talented people,” said DreamsWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg, Saturday at the DWA 9th annual brunch honoring the year’s animation and visual effects nominees.

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Among the Oscar nominees in attendance at Campanile were Chris Miller, director of Puss In Boots; Jennifer Yuh Nelson, director of Kung Fu Panda 2; Rob Legato, visual effects supervisor on Hugo; Joe Letteri, visual effects supervisor on Rise of the Planet of the Apes; Scott Farrar, visual effects supervisor on Transformers: Dark of the Moon; and Ethan Van der Ryn, supervising sound editor on Transformers 3.

First time nominee and Puss In Boots helmer Chris Miller was looking forward to “enjoying every minute” of the Oscars. “All the funniness, to the craziness, the fun.”

“There are so many things going on and I have been meeting a lot of cool people. It’s been really fun,” added first time-nominee and Panda director Nelson of the Oscar experience.

During the activities of the past few weeks, she was also reunited with Gary Oldman—nominated for best actor for Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy—who did the voice acting for Panda’s villainous peacock, Lord Shen. “I gave him a hug and thanked him for all the amazing work in he did with developing Shen. He gave it so much emotional weight as well as the threat. He is such an amazing actor.”

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Reflecting on the 3D productions that received Oscar nominations, Katzenberg commented: “3D got off to a really great start. … it stumbled a little bit along the way. Now I think it is back onto strong footing because there are great movies being made with great filmmakers. The 3D versions (of Kung Fu Panda 2 and Puss in Boots) were something that audiences really responded exceptionally well to. What Marty Scorsese did with Hugo was beautiful. What Michael Bay did with Transformers I thought was pretty thrilling. When you have great filmmakers who creatively embrace it and use it in their storytelling and create an immersive experience, it is pretty cool.”