Willie Ito, Sue Nichols, and Bruce Smith among group being honored for career achievement and exceptional contributions to animation at upcoming ceremony.
BURBANK – ASIFA-Hollywood announced today its selection of Juried Awards recipients for the 48th Annual Annie Awards. The Juried Awards honor career achievement and exceptional contributions to animation.
The Winsor McCay Award for career contributions to the art of animation are being presented to three recipients – Willie Ito, animation designer whose career began at Warner Bros., then for 20 years at Hanna Barbera and eventually at Disney TV; Posthumously to Sue Nichols, one of the few women who had a voice in the development of classics like Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, The Lion King, Mulan and Brave, and Bruce Smith, influential character animator, director, and producer of the feature film Bebe's Kids, short film Hair Love, and ground breaking television series, The Proud Family.
The June Foray Award for significant and benevolent or charitable impact on the art and industry of animation will be awarded to animator and art director, Daisuke “Dice” Tsutsumi for his work initiating the Totoro Forest Project as well as “Sketchtravel,” a sketchbook passed from one artist to another through 12 countries over more than 4 years, benefitting charities that the participating artists determine. The Ub Iwerks Award for technical advancement that has made a significant impact on the art and industry of animation will be presented to Epic Games for its Unreal Engine, the world’s most open and advanced real-time 3D creation tool that continues to make important technological inroads into cinematic storytelling, including previsualization and fully rendered animation pipelines; The Special Achievement Award recognizing the unique and significant impact on the art and industry of animation will be presented to Howard, the documentary about lyricist and storyteller, the late Howard Ashman, who, with music by Alan Menkin, penned lyrics for Little Shop of Horrors, The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, and Aladdin.
Created in 1972 by veteran voice talent June Foray, and in whose name the philanthropic June Foray Award was established, the Annie Awards have grown in scope and stature for the past four decades. ASIFA-Hollywood is the world’s first and foremost professional organization dedicated to promoting the Art of Animation and celebrating the people who create it.
Today, ASIFA-Hollywood, the largest chapter of the international organization ASIFA, supports a range of animation activities and preservation efforts through its membership. Current initiatives include the Animation Archive, Animation Aid Foundation, Animation Educators Forum, animated film preservation, special events, scholarships and screenings.