Visual Effects Society Awards: 'Avengers: Infinity War' Wins Top Prize

10:18 PM 2/5/2019

by Carolyn Giardina

'Ready Player One' wins pair of awards, 'First Man' tops supporting VFX category, and 'Into the Spider-Verse' sweeps animated feature categories.

Courtesy of Marvel Studios

Marking the first time a Marvel movie won the Visual Effects Society’s top prize, Avengers: Infinity War claimed the trophy for outstanding VFX in a photoreal feature plus three additional trophies for animated character (Thanos), effects simulations and compositing.

Also Tuesday at the 17th VES Awards, held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, Ready Player One earned two trophies, for best created environment (for The Shining’s Overlook Hotel) and virtual cinematography, while First Man claimed the award for outstanding supporting VFX in a photoreal feature (a film can't be nominated in both outstanding VFX in a photoreal feature and supporting VFX in a photoreal feature).

Infinity War, Ready Player One and First Man, along with Solo: A Star Wars Story and Christopher Robin are nominated for the Academy Award in VFX.

In six of the last 10 years, the winner in the outstanding VFX in a photo-real feature category (previously called the VFX-driven feature) went on to win the Oscar in VFX. Once, in 2011, the Oscar went to the winner of the VES Award for supporting VFX (Hugo).

Meanwhile Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse swept the animated feature categories winning four awards including best VFX in an animated feature, best animated character (Miles Morales), created environment (graphic New York City) and effects simulations.

In the categories for episodic programs, Lost in Space won four awards, including for outstanding VFX in a photoreal episode.

During the ceremony, a lifetime achievement award was bestowed upon Illumination founder/CEO Chris Meledandri; the Visionary Award went to Jonathan Nolan; and the Award for Creative Excellence was presented to David Benioff and D.B. Weiss.

Patton Oswalt hosted the ceremony, during which he recognized the VES Awards’ 17th year — "just on the cusp for Bryan Singer" — and asked the crowd "if there's any way you could green-screen a wall on the Mexican border … if you did that, [Donald Trump] would totally buy it."

During the ceremony, VES executive director Eric Roth announced a multi-year VES archiving initiative, which is intended to wrap with the launch of an online VFX digital library.

Evan Rachel Wood presented the Visionary Award to Nolan, while Steve Carell, initially wearing a Gru mask, presented to Meledandri. In his acceptance speech, Meledandri said, “Everyday we all join a noble mission. We contribute our creativity and craft to bring joy into the lives of audiences”

The complete list of winners follows.

  • Outstanding Visual Effects in a Photoreal Feature

    'Avengers: Infinity War'
    'Avengers: Infinity War'
    Courtesy of Chuck Zlotnick/Marvel Studios

    WINNER - Avengers: Infinity War
    Daniel DeLeeuw
    Jen Underdahl
    Kelly Port
    Matt Aitken
    Daniel Sudick

    Christopher Robin
    Chris Lawrence
    Steve Gaub
    Michael Eames
    Glenn Melenhorst
    Chris Corbould

    Ready Player One
    Roger Guyett
    Jennifer Meislohn
    David Shirk
    Matthew Butler
    Neil Corbould

    Solo: A Star Wars Story
    Rob Bredow
    Erin Dusseault
    Matt Shumway
    Patrick Tubach
    Dominic Tuohy

    Welcome to Marwen
    Kevin Baillie
    Sandra Scott
    Seth Hill
    Marc Chu
    James Paradis

  • Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Photoreal Feature

    'First Man'
    'First Man'
    Courtesy of Universal Pictures and DreamWorks Pictures

    WINNER - First Man
    Paul Lambert
    Kevin Elam
    Tristan Myles
    Ian Hunter
    JD Schwalm

    12 Strong
    Roger Nall
    Robert Weaver
    Mike Meinardus

    Bird Box
    Marcus Taormina
    David Robinson
    Mark Bakowski
    Sophie Dawes
    Mike Meinardus

    Bohemian Rhapsody
    Paul Norris
    Tim Field
    May Leung
    Andrew Simmonds

    Outlaw King
    Alex Bicknell
    Dan Bethell
    Greg O'Connor
    Stefano Pepin

  • Outstanding Visual Effects in an Animated Feature

    'Spider-Man': Into the Spider-Verse'
    'Spider-Man': Into the Spider-Verse'
    Courtesy of Sony Pictures

    WINNER - Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
    Joshua Beveridge
    Christian Hejnal
    Danny Dimian
    Bret St. Clair

    Dr. Seuss' The Grinch
    Pierre Leduc
    Janet Healy
    Bruno Chauffard
    Milo Riccarand

    Incredibles 2
    Brad Bird
    John Walker
    Rick Sayre
    Bill Watral

    Isle of Dogs
    Mark Waring
    Jeremy Dawson
    Tim Ledbury
    Lev Kolobov

    Ralph Breaks the Internet
    Scott Kersavage
    Bradford Simonsen
    Ernest J. Petti
    Cory Loftis

  • Outstanding Visual Effects in a Photoreal Episode

    'Lost in Space,' "Danger, Will Robinson"
    'Lost in Space,' "Danger, Will Robinson"
    Courtesy of Netflix

    WINNERLost in Space, "Danger, Will Robinson"
    Jabbar Raisani
    Terron Pratt
    Niklas Jacobson
    Joao Sita

    Altered Carbon, "Out of the Past"
    Everett Burrell
    Tony Meagher
    Steve Moncur
    Christine Lemon
    Joel Whist

    Krypton, "The Phantom Zone"
    Ian Markiewicz
    Jennifer Wessner
    Niklas Jacobson
    Martin Pelletier

    The Terror, "Go for Broke"
    Frank Petzold
    Lenka Líkarova
    Viktor Muller
    Pedro Sabrosa

    Westworld, "The Passenger"
    Jay Worth
    Elizabeth Castro
    Bruce Branit
    Joe Wehmeyer
    Michael Lantieri

  • Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Photoreal Episode

    'Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan'
    'Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan'
    Amazon Studios

    WINNER - Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan, "Pilot"
    Erik Henry
    Matt Robken
    Bobo Skipper
    Deak Ferrand
    Pau Costa

    The Alienist, "The Boy on the Bridge"
    Kent Houston
    Wendy Garfinkle
    Steve Murgatroyd
    Drew Jones
    Paul Stephenson

    The Deuce, "We're All Beasts"
    Jim Rider
    Steven Weigle
    John Bair
    Aaron Raff

    The First, "Near and Far"
    Karen Goulekas
    Eddie Bonin
    Roland Langschwert
    Bryan Godwin
    Matthew James Kutcher

    The Handmaid's Tale, "June"
    Brendan Taylor
    Stephen Lebed
    Winston Lee
    Leo Bovell

  • Outstanding Animated Character in a Photoreal Feature

    'Avengers: Infinity War'
    'Avengers: Infinity War'
    Courtesy of Marvel Studios

    WINNER - Avengers: Infinity War; Thanos
    Jan Philip Cramer
    Darren Hendler
    Paul Story
    Sidney Kombo-Kintombo

    Christopher Robin; Tigger
    Arslan Elver
    Kayn Garcia
    Laurent Laban
    Mariano Mendiburu

    Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom; Indoraptor
    Jance Rubinchik
    Ted Lister
    Yannick Gillain
    Keith Ribbons

    Ready Player One; Art3mis
    David Shirk
    Brian Cantwell
    Jung-Seung Hong
    Kim Ooi

  • Outstanding Visual Effects in a Real-Time Project

    'Age of Sail'
    'Age of Sail'
    Courtesy of Google Inc.

    WINNER - Age of Sail
    John Kahrs
    Kevin Dart
    Cassidy Curtis
    Theresa Latzko

    Cycles
    Jeff Gipson
    Nicholas Russell
    Lauren Nicole Brown
    Jorge E. Ruiz Cano

    Dr Grordbort's Invaders
    Greg Broadmore
    Mhairead Connor
    Steve Lambert
    Simon Baker

    God of War
    Maximilian Vaughn Ancar
    Corey Teblum
    Kevin Huynh
    Paolo Surricchio

    Marvel's Spider-Man
    Grant Hollis
    Daniel Wang
    Seth Faske
    Abdul Bezrati

  • Outstanding Visual Effects in a Commercial

    WINNER - John Lewis, "The Boy and the Piano"
    Kamen Markov
    Philip Whalley
    Anthony Bloor
    Andy Steele

    Beyond Good & Evil 2
    Maxime Luere
    Leon Berelle
    Remi Kozyra
    Dominique Boidin

    McDonald's, "#ReindeerReady"
    Ben Cronin
    Josh King
    Gez Wright
    Suzanne Jandu

    U.S. Marine Corps, "A Nation's Call"
    Steve Drew
    Nick Fraser
    Murray Butler
    Greg White
    Dave Peterson

    Volkswagen, "Born Confident"
    Carsten Keller
    Anandi Peiris
    Dan Sanders
    Fabian Frank

  • Outstanding Visual Effects in a Special Venue Project

    WINNER - Childish Gambino's Pharos
    Keith Miller
    Alejandro Crawford
    Thelvin Cabezas
    Jeremy Thompson

    Beautiful Hunan; Flight of the Phoenix
    B. R. Rajeev
    Suhit Saha
    Arish Fyzee
    Unmesh Nimbalkar

    DreamWorks Theatre Presents Kung Fu Panda
    Marc Scott
    Doug Cooper
    Michael Losure
    Alex Timchenko

    Osheaga Music and Arts Festival
    Andre Montambeault
    Marie-Josee Paradis
    Alyson Lamontagne
    David Bishop Noriega

    Pearl Quest
    Eugenie von Tunzelmann
    Liz Oliver
    Ian Spendloff
    Ross Burgess

  • Outstanding Animated Character in an Animated Feature

    'Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse'
    'Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse'
    Courtesy of Sony Pictures Entertainment

    WINNER - Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse; Miles Morales
    Marcos Kang
    Chad Belteau
    Humberto Rosa
    Julie Bernier Gosselin

    Dr. Seuss' The Grinch; The Grinch
    David Galante
    Francois Boudaille
    Olivier Luffin
    Yarrow Cheney

    Incredibles 2; Helen Parr
    Michal Makarewicz
    Ben Porter
    Edgar Rodriguez
    Kevin Singleton

    Ralph Breaks the Internet; Ralphzilla
    Dong Joo Byun
    Dave K. Komorowski
    Justin Sklar
    Le Joyce Tong

  • Outstanding Animated Character in an Episode or Real-Time Project

    'Lost in Space'
    'Lost in Space'
    Courtesy of Netflix

    WINNER - Lost in Space; Humanoid
    Chad Shattuck
    Paul Zeke
    Julia Flanagan
    Andrew McCartney

    Cycles; Rae
    Jose Luis Gomez Diaz
    Edward Everett Robbins III
    Jorge E. Ruiz Cano
    Jose Luis "Weecho" Velasquez

    Nightflyers, "All That We Have Found"; Eris
    Peter Giliberti
    James Chretien
    Ryan Cromie
    Cesar Dacol Jr.

    Spider-Man; Doc Ock
    Brian Wyser
    Henrique Naspolini
    Sophie Brennan
    William Salyers

  • Outstanding Animated Character in a Commercial

    WINNER - Volkswagen, "Born Confident"; Bam
    David Bryan
    Chris Welsby
    Fabian Frank
    Chloe Dawe

    McDonald's; Bobbi the Reindeer
    Gabriela Ruch Salmeron
    Joe Henson
    Andrew Butler
    Joel Best

    Overkill's The Walking Dead; Maya
    Jonas Ekman
    Goran Milic
    Jonas Skoog
    Henrik Eklundh

    Peta, "Best Friend"; Lucky
    Bernd Nalbach
    Emanuel Fuchs
    Sebastian Plank
    Christian Leitner

  • Outstanding Created Environment in a Photoreal Feature

    'Ready Player One'
    'Ready Player One'
    Courtesy of Warner Bros.

    WINNER - Ready Player One; The Shining, Overlook Hotel
    Mert Yamak
    Stanley Wong
    Joana Garrido
    Daniel Gagiu

    Ant-Man and the Wasp; Journey to the Quantum Realm
    Florian Witzel
    Harsh Mistri
    Yuri Serizawa
    Can Yuksel

    Aquaman; Atlantis
    Quentin Marmier
    Aaron Barr
    Jeffrey De Guzman
    Ziad Shureih

    Solo: A Star Wars Story; Vandor Planet
    Julian Foddy
    Christoph Ammann
    Clement Gerard
    Pontus Albrecht

  • Outstanding Created Environment in an Animated Feature

    'Dr. Seuss' The Grinch'
    'Dr. Seuss' The Grinch'
    Sony Pictures

    WINNER - Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse; Graphic New York City
    Terry Park
    Bret St. Clair
    Kimberly Liptrap
    Dave Morehead

    Dr. Seuss' The Grinch; Whoville
    Loic Rastout
    Ludovic Ramiere
    Henri Deruer
    Nicolas Brack

    Incredibles 2; Parr House
    Christopher M. Burrows
    Philip Metschan
    Michael Rutter
    Joshua West

    Ralph Breaks the Internet; Social Media District
    Benjamin Min Huang
    Jon Kim Krummel II
    Gina Warr Lawes
    Matthias Lechner

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

    'Lost in Space'
    'Lost in Space'
    Courtesy of Netflix

    WINNER - Lost in Space, "Pilot"; Impact Area
    Philip Engstrom
    Kenny Vahakari
    Jason Martin
    Martin Bergquist

    Cycles, "The House"
    Michael R.W. Anderson
    Jeff Gipson
    Jose Luis Gomez Diaz
    Edward Everett Robbins III

    The Deuce, "42nd St"
    John Bair
    Vance Miller
    Jose Marin
    Steve Sullivan

    The Handmaid's Tale, "June"; Fenway Park
    Patrick Zentis
    Kevin McGeagh
    Leo Bovell
    Zachary Dembinski

    The Man in the High Castle; Reichsmarschall Ceremony
    Casi Blume
    Michael Eng
    Ben McDougal
    Sean Myers

  • Outstanding Virtual Cinematography in a Photoreal Project

    'Ready Player One'
    'Ready Player One'
    Courtesy of Warner Bros.

    WINNERReady Player One; New York Race
    Daniele Bigi
    Edmund Kolloen
    Mathieu Vig
    Jean-Baptiste Noyau

    Aquaman; Third Act Battle
    Claus Pedersen
    Mohammad Rastkar
    Cedric Lo
    Ryan McCoy

    Echo; Time Displacement
    Victor Perez
    Tomas Tjernberg
    Tomas Wall
    Marcus Dineen

    Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom; Gyrosphere Escape
    Pawl Fulker
    Matt Perrin
    Oscar Faura
    David Vickery

    Welcome to Marwen; Town of Marwen
    C. Kim Miles
    Matthew Ward
    Ryan Beagan
    Marc Chu

  • Outstanding Model in a Photoreal or Animated Project

    'Mortal Engines'
    'Mortal Engines'

    WINNER - Mortal Engines; London
    Matthew Sandoval
    James Ogle
    Nick Keller
    Sam Tack

    Avengers: Infinity War; Nidavellir Forge Megastructure
    Chad Roen
    Ryan Rogers
    Jeff Tetzlaff
    Ming Pan

    Incredibles 2; Underminer Vehicle
    Neil Blevins
    Philip Metschan
    Kevin Singleton

    Ready Player One; DeLorean DMC-12
    Giuseppe Laterza
    Kim Lindqvist
    Mauro Giacomazzo
    William Gallyot

    Solo: A Star Wars Story; Millennium Falcon
    Masa Narita
    Steve Walton
    David Meny
    James Clyne

  • Outstanding Effects Simulations in a Photoreal Feature

    'Avengers: Infinity War'
    'Avengers: Infinity War'
    Courtesy of Marvel Studios

    WINNER - Avengers: Infinity War; Titan
    Gerardo Aguilera
    Ashraf Ghoniem
    Vasilis Pazionis
    Hartwell Durfor

    Avengers: Infinity War; Wakanda
    Florian Witzel
    Adam Lee
    Miguel Perez Senent
    Francisco Rodriguez

    Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald
    Dominik Kirouac
    Chloe Ostiguy
    Christian Gaumond

    Venom
    Aharon Bourland
    Jordan Walsh
    Aleksandar Chalyovski
    Federico Frassinelli

  • Outstanding Effects Simulations in an Animated Feature

    'Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse'
    'Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse'

    WINNER - Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
    Ian Farnsworth
    Pav Grochola
    Simon Corbaux
    Brian D. Casper

    Dr. Seuss' The Grinch; Snow, Clouds and Smoke
    Eric Carme
    Nicolas Brice
    Milo Riccarand

    Incredibles 2
    Paul Kanyuk
    Tiffany Erickson Klohn
    Vincent Serritella
    Matthew Kiyoshi Wong

    Ralph Breaks the Internet; Virus Infection & Destruction
    Paul Carman
    Henrik Falt
    Christopher Hendryx
    David Hutchins

    Smallfoot
    Henrik Karlsson
    Theo Vandernoot
    Martin Furness
    Dmitriy Kolesnik

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

    'Altered Carbon'
    'Altered Carbon'
    Courtesy of DNEG TV

    WINNER - Altered Carbon
    Philipp Kratzer
    Daniel Fernandez
    Xavier Lestourneaud
    Andrea Rosa

    Lost in Space; Jupiter is Falling
    Denys Shchukin
    Heribert Raab
    Michael Billette
    Jaclyn Stauber

    Lost in Space; The Get Away
    Juri Bryan
    Will Elsdale
    Hugo Medda
    Maxime Marline

    The Man in the High Castle; Statue of Liberty Destruction
    Saber Jlassi
    Igor Zanic
    Nick Chamberlain
    Chris Parks

  • Outstanding Compositing in a Photoreal Feature

    'Avengers: Infinity War'
    'Avengers: Infinity War'
    Photofest

    WINNER - Avengers: Infinity War; Titan
    Sabine Laimer
    Tim Walker
    Tobias Wiesner
    Massimo Pasquetti

    First Man
    Joel Delle-Vergin
    Peter Farkas
    Miles Lauridsen
    Francesco Dell'Anna

    Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom
    John Galloway
    Enrik Pavdeja
    David Nolan
    Juan Espigares Enriquez

    Welcome to Marwen
    Woei Lee
    Saul Galbiati
    Max Besner
    Thai-Son Doan

  • Outstanding Compositing in a Photoreal Episode

    'Lost in Space'
    'Lost in Space'
    Courtesy of Netflix

    WINNERLost in Space, "Impact"; Crash Site Rescue
    David Wahlberg
    Douglas Roshamn
    Sofie Ljunggren
    Fredrik Lonn

    Altered Carbon
    Jean-Francois Leroux
    Reece Sanders
    Stephen Bennett
    Laraib Atta

    The Handmaid's Tale, "June"
    Winston Lee
    Gwen Zhang
    Xi Luo
    Kevin Quatman

    Silicon Valley, "Artificial Emotional Intelligence"; Fiona
    Tim Carras
    Michael Eng
    Shiying Li
    Bill Parker

  • Outstanding Compositing in a Photoreal Commercial

    WINNER - Apple, "Welcome Home"
    Michael Ralla
    Steve Drew
    Alejandro Villabon
    Peter Timberlake

    Apple, "Unlock"
    Morten Vinther
    Michael Gregory
    Gustavo Bellon
    Rodrigo Jimenez

    Genesis, "G90 Facelift"
    Neil Alford
    Jose Caballero
    Joseph Dymond
    Greg Spencer

    John Lewis, "The Boy and the Piano"
    Kamen Markov
    Pratyush Paruchuri
    Kalle Kohlstrom
    Daniel Benjamin

  • Outstanding Visual Effects in a Student Project

    WINNER - Terra Nova
    Thomas Battistetti
    Melanie Geley
    Mickael Le Mezo
    Guillaume Hoarau

    Chocolate Man
    David Bellenbaum
    Aleksandra Todorovic
    Jorg Schmidt
    Martin Boué

    Proxima-b
    Denis Krez
    Tina Vest
    Elias Kremer
    Lukas Loffler

    Ratatoskr
    Meike Muller
    Lena-Carolin Lohfink
    Anno Schachner
    Lisa Schachner