Search form

ELAN Honorary Awards Laud Miyazaki, Debevec, Miyamoto

The 3rd Annual ELAN Awards announced the three honorary awards, as voted online, are...

For Lifetime Achievement In Animation, Hayao Miyazaki is a prominent director of many popular animated feature films. He is the co-founder of Studio Ghibli, an animation studio and production company. He remained largely unknown to the West, outside of animation communities, until Miramax released PRINCESS MONONOKE in 1997. By that time, his films had already enjoyed both commercial and critical success in Japan and Central Asia. For instance, PRINCESS MONONOKE was the highest-grossing film of all time in Japan, and the first animated film to win Picture of the Year at the Japanese Academy Awards. His later film, SPIRITED AWAY, had that distinction as well, and was the first anime film to win an Academy Award.

HOWL'S MOVING CASTLE was also nominated but did not receive the award. In 2006, TIME Magazine voted Miyazaki one of the most influential Asians of the past 60 years. Anime directed by Miyazaki that have won the Animage Anime Grand Prix award have been NAUSICA OF THE VALLEY OF THE WIND in 1984, CASTLE IN THE SKY in 1986, MY NEIGHBOR TOTORO in 1988, and KIKI'S DELIVERY SERVICE in 1989.

For Visionary Award for VFX, Paul Debevec is a researcher in computer graphics at the University of Southern California's Institute for Creative Technologies. He is best known for his pioneering work in high dynamic range imaging and image-based modeling and rendering.

Debevec received his Ph.D. in computer science from UC Berkeley in 1996; his thesis research was in photogrammetry, or the recovery of the 3D shape of an object from a collection of still photographs taken from various angles. In 1997 he and a team of students produced THE CAMPANILE MOVIE, a virtual flyby of UC Berkeley's famous Campanile tower. Debevec's more recent research has included methods for recording real-world illumination for use in computer graphics; a number of novel inventions for recording ambient and incident light have resulted from the work of Debevec and his team, including the light stage, of which five or more versions have been constructed, each an evolutionary improvement over the previous.

Techniques based on Debevec's work have been used in several major motion pictures, including THE MATRIX (1999), SPIDER-MAN 2 (2004), KING KONG (2005), SUPERMAN RETURNS (2006), and SPIDER-MAN 3 (2007).

For Video Game Hall Of Fame, Shigeru Miyamoto. Considered by his peers to be the greatest video game designer in the world and called "The Spielberg of Video Games" by TIME magazine (May 1996), Shigeru Miyamoto serves as the creative force behind the world's most popular and enduring video games for Nintendo hardware systems.

Miyamoto joined Nintendo in 1977 as a staff artist and quickly built a reputation for himself. As the creator of the hugely popular MARIO BROS. and THE LEGEND OF ZELDA games, he is one of the most revered figures in the video game world. In 1981, Nintendo released Miyamoto's first masterpiece, the arcade game DONKEY KONG. In 1985, Nintendo released the Nintendo Entertainment System with Miyamoto's SUPER MARIO BROS. The classic side-scrolling action game set the standard for all future home console video games. Eventually, more than 40 million units were sold worldwide, and a series of mega-hit titles was born, including the 1996 Nintendo 64 best-seller, SUPER MARIO 64. More than 210 million video games in the SUPER MARIO series have been sold worldwide.

To date, Miyamoto has worked on more than 100 different Nintendo video game titles.

The three honorary awards will be presented at the upcoming ELAN Awards on April 25, 2009.