Visual Effects Society Awards 2023: 'Avatar 2' leads the march
We are living in the "golden age of visual effects" and in celebration of the outstanding work and contributions made by VFX artists and producers, the prestigious Visual Effects Society (VES) awards are given out every year in a grand ceremony. Held at Beverly Hilton Hotel, the 21st VES awards were announced recently. Let's gather all the winners of the prestigious awards.
James Cameron's 'Avatar 2' won nine awards
It was a night dominated by James Cameron's Avatar: The Way of Water! The smashing sequel had a record of 14 nominations at the ceremony and shattered the old VES nomination record, which was set by none other than the original Avatar. Avatar 2 snagged the prize for Outstanding Visual Effects in a Photoreal Feature, along with awards for character, environment, and virtual cinematography.
'Thirteen Lives,' 'Pinocchio' won big at VES
The harrowing story of the 2018 Thailand cave rescue presented in the film Thirteen Lives by director Ron Howard, took home the award for Supporting Visual Effects in a Photoreal Feature. Meanwhile, Oscar-winning filmmaker Mark Gustafson and Guillermo del Toro's Pinocchio was the top animation contender with six nominations and won three VES awards including Visual Effects in an Animated Feature.
'Avatar 2' also took the first VES Emerging Technology Award
This year the first VES Emerging Technology award was presented, which was aimed at celebrating the creators of the technology behind the animations and VFX, and honoring the inventors of novel devices, software, or methodology of outstanding value in visual effects, or animation. The Disney sequel from 20th Century Studios Avatar: The Way of Water took home this award too for its "water toolset."
Other top mentions of the night
Notably, the only other film that won the VES award was Puss in Boots: The Last Wish for Effects Simulations. Prime Video's The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power led the field with seven nominations and bagged a total of three awards. Other shows that took home VES statuettes included HBO's The Last of Us and Netflix's The Umbrella Academy, among others.
Cameron presented the Lifetime Achievement award to his ex-wife
To note, since the inception of awards in 2002, the main filmmaker of the night has gone on to win the Oscars 11 times. Last year, Dune movie won the top VES honor and grabbed six Academy Awards including Best Visual Effects. Meanwhile, director Cameron presented the Lifetime Achievement Award to his ex-wife and Terminator collaborator Gale Anne Hurd.