Academy’s Science And Technology Council Adds 7 New Members

Bill Baggelaar, Brooke Breton, Buzz Hays, Arjun Ramamurthy, Rachel Rose, Dave Schnuelle and Mandy Walker have accepted invitations to join the Science and Technology Council of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, bringing the Council’s 2019–2020 membership roster to 25.

As senior vice president, production and post-production technologies for Sony Pictures Entertainment, Baggelaar is helping to forge the future in theatrical and television production by using advanced workflows for on-set capture to post-production, digital color correction and video mastering. He has been instrumental in driving the studio’s transition to IMF (Interoperable Master Format) for 4K/UHD and HD delivery. He also is responsible for driving new technologies like high dynamic range (HDR), virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) from creation to consumer delivery. Baggelaar is an Academy Member-at-Large.

Breton has served as a producer on a wide variety of technologically innovative live action and animated motion pictures and television series. Over the span of her career, she has had the opportunity to be involved with such feature films as “Avatar,” “Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow,” “Master and Commander,” “Solaris,” “Dick Tracy” and several “Star Trek” feature films, as well as television series including “Star Trek: The Next Generation.” Breton has also been instrumental in launching several important ventures in the visual effects industry, including James Cameron’s visual effects house Digital Domain and DreamWorks Animation. She is a member of the Academy’s Visual Effects Branch.

Hays leads the Media and Entertainment team at Google Cloud Solutions and is a leading expert on advanced imaging production and technology in visual effects, immersive technologies (AR/VR), high frame rate (HFR), high dynamic range (HDR), and stereoscopic platforms for film, television, and gaming. Previously, he served as head of product at Lytro, a Light Field camera systems company, and as senior vice president of 3D production for Sony Corporation. At Lucasfilm, he led the research and development efforts under George Lucas at the THX Division, where he supervised the design and construction of more than 600 cinemas, screening rooms and dubbing theaters. Hays is an Academy Member-at-Large.

Ramamurthy is currently senior vice president of technology at Twentieth Century Fox/Disney. In that capacity, he is responsible for outlining and defining the next generation workflow and technology used for feature and television post-production, digital content processing, and downstream distribution and digital archiving. Ramamurthy has more than 25 years of experience in the post-production industry, having worked previously at Deluxe’s EFILM facility and at Warner Bros. in technical operations and feature animation. He is an active member of SMPTE and IEEE and has contributed to a variety of technical committees and standards. He holds several patents in the area of digital image processing and media post-production. Ramamurthy is an Academy Member-at-Large and a fellow of the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers.

Rose, an R&D Supervisor at Industrial Light & Magic (ILM), drives technology that aids artists in the creation and animation of characters for feature films. In her 12 years at ILM, she has worked on a wide range of films, including “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,” “Noah” and “Rango.” Prior to her tenure at ILM, Rose earned her Ph.D. in computer graphics animation. Her work on BlockParty, a visual, procedural rigging system, earned her a Technical Achievement Award from the Academy in 2017. She is a member of the Academy’s Visual Effects Branch.

Schnuelle is vice president of technology for Dolby Laboratories, where he is responsible for guidance and outreach in Dolby’s efforts in both digital cinema and consumer imaging areas. He has received awards for the development of the Dolby Professional Reference Monitor and the Dolby 3D stereoscopic cinema system. Prior to joining Dolby Laboratories, he was director of technology for Lucasfilm Ltd.’s THX Division, where he established the THX Digital Mastering Program and designed the international digital cinema exhibitions of “Star Wars” movies “Episode 1” and “Episode 2.” Schnuelle has received five patents for his work during that period, and is active in image technology research and the perception of images. He is an Academy Member-at-Large and a fellow of Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers.

Walker’s credits as director of photography include “The Mountain between Us,” “Hidden Figures,” “Truth,” “Australia,” “Shattered Glass” and “Lantana.” She was inducted into the Hall of Fame for the Australian Cinematographers Society in 2017 and was an artist in residence at UCLA in 2015. Walker has been an Academy member since 2009 and serves as a governor of the Cinematographers Branch.

The Council co-chairs for 2019–2020 are Visual Effects Branch governor Craig Barron and Member-at-Large Annie Chang.

The Council’s 16 other returning members are David Ayer, John Bailey, Nafees Bin Zafar, Rod Bogart, Maryann Brandon, Bill Corso, Theo Gluck, Leslie Iwerks, Andrea Kalas, Academy governor John Knoll, Colette Mullenhoff, Cary Phillips, Leon Silverman, Jeffrey Taylor, Academy governor Michael Tronick and Steve Yedlin.

Established in 2003 by the Academy’s Board of Governors, the Science and Technology Council provides a forum for the exchange of information, promotes cooperation among diverse technological interests within the industry, sponsors publications, fosters educational activities, and preserves the history of the science and technology of motion pictures.


9 Scientific And Technical Areas Under Investigation For 2019

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced today that nine distinct scientific and technical investigations have been launched for 2019.

These investigations are made public so that individuals and companies with devices or claims of innovation within these areas will have the opportunity to submit achievements for review. The Academy’s Scientific and Technical Awards Committee has started investigations into the following areas:

  • Professional desktop monitors with self-calibration
  • Head-mounted facial acquisition systems
  • Wireless video transmission systems used in motion picture production
  • Frameworks enabling high-performance ray-geometry intersections
  • Hair simulation toolsets
  • Audio repair and restoration software for motion pictures
  • Automatic dialog post-synchronization systems
  • Costume, prop, hair and makeup tracking and inventory communication tools for physical production
  • Post-production tracking and scheduling systems

“The science and technology of filmmaking is constantly evolving and advancing. Each year, the Academy researches technology that has had a significant impact on the motion picture arts. This year, we are examining a distinct group of technologies, which includes hair simulation, facial capture and audio repair,” said Doug Roble, chair of the Scientific and Technical Awards Committee. The current awards cycle will commence with a series of exhaustive investigations, conducted by a committee made up of industry experts with a diversity of expertise, and culminate with the Scientific and Technical Awards ceremony in June.”

The deadline to submit additional entries is Tuesday, September 17, at 5 p.m. PT. For more information on the Scientific and Technical Awards or to submit a similar technology, click here.

After thorough investigations are conducted in each of the technology categories, the committee will meet in the spring to vote on recommendations to the Academy’s Board of Governors, which will make the final awards decisions.

The Scientific and Technical Awards Presentation will be held on Saturday, June 20, 2020.


Academy Announces Three New At-Large Governors

The Academy Board of Governors has confirmed the appointment of three new governors-at-large, DeVon Franklin (Executives Branch), Rodrigo García (Directors Branch) and Janet Yang (Producers Branch). They will each serve a three-year term, beginning July 1. This furthers the Academy’s A2020 initiative, which seeks to support inclusion and increase representation within its membership and the greater film community.

“The Board looks forward to welcoming DeVon, Janet and Rodrigo. They are each well-positioned to support our continuing global outreach efforts,” said Academy President John Bailey. “We are grateful to our three outgoing at-large governors, Gregory Nava, Jennifer Yuh Nelson and Reginald Hudlin, for their dedicated service to the Academy over the last three years.”

In addition to the governors-at-large, the Academy’s 17 branches are each represented by three governors, who may serve up to three consecutive three-year terms. The Board of Governors sets the Academy’s strategic vision, preserves the organization’s financial health and assures the fulfillment of its mission.

The Academy’s 2019-2020 Board of Governors will be announced in June.


Academy Announces 2019-20 FilmCraft And FilmWatch Grant Recipients

The Academy Foundation of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced today the 47 recipients of its 2019 FilmCraft and FilmWatch grants.

“The Academy’s Grants Committee is honored to continue to provide support and inspire generations of filmmakers new and old to connect the world through motion pictures,” said Marcus Hu, chair of the Academy’s grants committee. “We are confident the 47 organizations chosen to receive this year’s grants will leave a lasting impact on our society through their diverse and fresh perspectives.”

The Academy’s FilmCraft and FilmWatch grants were established to identify and empower future filmmakers from nontraditional backgrounds, cultivate new and diverse talent, promote motion pictures as an art form, and provide a platform for underrepresented artists. Grants range from $5,000-$20,000, and a total of $500,000 was awarded for the 2019-2020 grants year.

The grant recipient institutions and programs are as follows:

FilmCraft Grants

Bard College (New York, NY) – Creative Process in Dialogue: Art and the Public

  • Program will include a master class hosted by leading black American filmmakers Charles Burnett, Julie Dash, and Bradford Young, followed by a public dialogue featuring the filmmakers.

California State University, Los Angeles (Los Angeles, CA) – Women Making Film

  • Supports collaboration with Cal State LA’s Television, Film and Media Studies Department and the Canon Burbank facility where 10-12 female students will participate in a series of workshops and classes held at the Canon facility in which students receive hands-on experience and instruction.

Camden International Film Festival (Camden, ME) – Points North Institute Artist Programs

  • The 2019 Artist Programs, which include a fellowship, two residencies, an industry marketplace and conference, bring hundreds of documentary filmmakers and film professionals from diverse backgrounds to rural towns on the coast of Maine, providing unique opportunities for mentorship, education, networking and artistic inspiration.

Cine Qua Non Lab (Morelia, Mexico) – CQNL’s Script Revision Lab

  • Supports CQNL’s 2019 Script Revision Lab in English: a two-week intensive residency that will give 12 independent screenwriters from around the world the opportunity to develop their feature-length narrative scripts within a guided and supportive environment.

Creative Capital Foundation (New York, NY) – 2019 Creative Capital Artist Retreat

  • The Artist Retreat is a multi-day convening that provides career development and mentorship for a diverse group of Creative Capital artists, including powerful filmmakers, and pitch sessions for artists to present their projects to an audience of 200+ cultural influencers poised to advance their work.

Dreaming Tree Foundation (Rock Island, IL) – Fresh Films Career Path

  • Fresh Films Career Path engages diverse at-risk teens in Minneapolis, Chicago, Los Angeles and the Quad Cities in an eight-month filmmaking program that builds creative and technical skills through working on a film series.

Educational Video Center (New York, NY) – Youth Documentary Workshop

  • Youth Documentary Workshop (YDW) program is an afterschool and summer program that provides workshops for at-risk youth to shoot, edit, and produce short documentaries, followed by paid internships that provide opportunities to pursue careers in the film and television industry.

Film Independent (Los Angeles, CA) – Film Independent Producing Lab

  • The Lab is a high-caliber artist development program that supports up to eight diverse, innovative independent producers annually. Producers develop strategies and action plans to bring their selected narrative feature to fruition.

Independent Filmmaker Project (New York, NY) – Independent Filmmaker Labs

  • This unique, year-long free program provides education, mentoring, and essential industry connections to filmmakers throughout the country through completion, marketing, and distribution of their first feature films.

Indie Memphis (Memphis, TN) – Black Creators Forum

  • A program of the Indie Memphis Film Festival that is designed to build a supportive community, provide educational opportunities, and new productions for black filmmakers.

Inner-City Arts (Los Angeles, CA) – Inner-City Arts’ Animation & Filmmaking Workshops

  • The Animation and Filmmaking Workshops will provide 90 underserved high school students with 20 hours of high-quality arts instruction. Workshops will take place in our fully equipped media arts studio and will be taught by professional Teaching Artists, practicing artists who have experience working in the creative industry.

Jacob Burns Film Center (Pleasantville, NY) – Creative Culture Artists-in-Residence Program

  • Creative Culture is a fellowship and residency program that fosters a diverse community for emerging and established filmmakers in the region, across the country and around the globe. Funds will support two JBFC series-focused Artists-in-Residence, such as Global Watch, REMIX (The Black Experience in Film), Contemporary Arab Cinema.

Leap, Inc. (Brooklyn, NY) – Production Assistant and Post Production Training Programs

  • Program seeks to bridge the skills gap for underrepresented individuals from low-income communities, increasing their access to careers in the television and film production industry.

Maysles Institute (New York, NY) – Community Producers Program

  • The Community Producers Program (CPP) is a 16-week hands-on documentary production and outreach program for justice-involved young adults, ages 18-24, who are interested in building community, engaging in personal development, and gaining healing and leadership practices through documentary filmmaking.

Montclair State University Foundation (Montclair, NJ) – Intensive Craft Seminars

  • The seminars, focusing on below-the-line crafts like sound design, foley artistry, production design, and camera work, will give students from underserved communities access to and experience with professionals in the industry that they otherwise would have difficulty accessing.

San Francisco Film Society (San Francisco, CA) – SFFILM Doc Talks

  • Doc Talk workshops provide documentary filmmakers with artistic guidance and build practical filmmaking skills.

Scribe Video Center (Philadelphia, PA) – Film Scholars

  • Film Scholars is a series of documentary filmmaking courses focusing on planning/scripting, production management, production and editing that will provide a cohort of emerging and mid-level artists from groups traditionally not represented in commercial media with the skills to complete new documentary works.

Southern Documentary Fund (Durham, NC) – 2019 SDF Artists Convening

  • The Artists Convening is a three-day gathering that offers workshops, mentorship, networking, and other opportunities for Southern media-makers to develop their craft and build vocational infrastructure for film in the South.

Toronto International Film Festival (Toronto, Canada) – Filmmaker Lab 2019

  • The Filmmaker Lab program provides intensive professional development, including workshops, networking and coaching opportunities with internationally acclaimed filmmakers, for emerging and diverse directors during the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival.

UnionDocs, Inc. (Brooklyn, NY) – Union Docs Labs

  • The labs enhance artistic vision, offer practical knowledge of the field, provide significant professional development, bolster writing and technical skills, and ultimately advance the participants’ creative documentary projects for 36 emerging and mid-career filmmakers.

Visual Communications (Los Angeles, CA) – Armed with a Camera Fellowship

  • Program helps emerging Asian American Pacific Islander filmmakers to create new and original work.

Youth FX, Inc. (Albany, NY) – NeXt Doc

  • The NeXt Doc program amplifies the voices of emerging nonfiction filmmakers of color by providing access to training from established documentarians in the field.

FilmWatch Grants

African Film Festival (New York, NY) – 50 Years of FESPACO

  • Program is a commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the venerated Panafrican Film and Television Festival of Ouagadougou (FESPACO). We will present a series of five events examining the legacy of this landmark festival.

American Museum of Natural History (New York, NY) – 2019 Margaret Mead Film Festival

  • Funds will support community outreach and support participation by documentary filmmakers and film subjects.

Anthology Film Archives (New York, NY) – The Cinema of Gender Transgression

  • Supports an ongoing series that explores the ways cinema has intersected with the experiences, struggles, and ideas within the transgender community by showcasing historical films that have explored the concept of gender transgression, and contemporary works emerging from the transgender community.

Ashland Independent Film Festival (Ashland, OR) – The Pride Award Series: Queer Intersectionality

  • The “Pride Award Series: Queer Intersectionality” will be programmed by internationally renowned film critic B. Ruby Rich, recipient of our 2019 Pride Award. The series of screenings and conversations will call attention to artists and films that highlight productive and combustible intersections of race, class, gender, and sexual preference.

Asian American International Film Festival (Brooklyn, NY) – Beyond Representation

  • “Beyond Representation” is a 10-day series of screenings, panel discussions and readings, analyzing the impact of Asian-led films, exploring the relationship between Asian Americans and other communities, dissecting the impact of recent immigration restrictions, and forging visions for the future.

Azubuike African American Council for the Arts (Davenport, IA) – Film and Conversation Series: The LA Rebellion

  • The series will feature 12 L.A. Rebellion films, including on-site presentations by filmmakers Charles Burnett, Julie Dash, Haile Gerima and Zeinabu Irene Davis.

Big Sky Film Institute (Missoula, MT) – Native Filmmaker Initiative

  • The Native Filmmaker Initiative (NFI) elevates Indigenous artists, brings Native stories to diverse audiences, and educates youth about contemporary and historical Indigenous issues through nonfiction film. The initiative includes the Native Filmmaker Fellowship, Native Voices festival programming, and educational outreach.

Black Harvest Film Festival (Chicago, IL) – Spotlight on Emerging Filmmakers

  • Spotlight on Emerging Filmmakers will focus on acknowledging first-time filmmakers of African descent or those who have created no more than three films (shorts or feature-length).

Brooklyn Academy of Music (Brooklyn, NY) – Expanding the Frame

  • Expanding the Frame is designed to amplify marginalized voices within the dominant cinematic narrative. This year-long program will challenge hegemonic perspectives by highlighting important, though often overlooked, artists in American and international film.

California Institute of the Arts (Valencia, CA) – Jack H. Skirball Screening Series at REDCAT

  • The Jack H. Skirball Screening Series will feature today’s most adventurous independent filmmakers, rarely seen cinematic landmarks, and festivals devoted to topics in world cinema during the 2019/20 season.

Canyon Cinema Foundation (San Francisco, CA) – Canyon Cinema Discovered

  • Canyon Cinema Discovered is a platform for engaging new audiences in experimental cinema. A diverse group of curators will be selected to explore Canyon Cinema’s unique collection, resulting in a nationwide programming initiative.

Chicago International Film Festival (Chicago, IL) – Spotlight: Architecture+Space+Design

  • The Spotlight: Architecture+Space+Design Program will showcase the less visible craft of production design by highlighting the work of a diversity of designers and by examining how world-building in film reflects and informs real-world architectural and social structures.

Chicago Latino Film Festival (Chicago, IL) – Educational & Outreach Programs

  • Educational & Outreach programming during the 35th Chicago Latino Film Festival will include Q & A sessions with filmmakers; free student matinees; and film screenings at community venue partners

Cleveland International Film Festival (Cleveland, OH) – To Be Continued: Focus on Women Filmmakers

  • To Be Continued supports and encourages the female voice in film and aims to create more equity and diversity in the film industry.

Facets Multi-Media, Inc. (Chicago, IL) – Reels on Wheels

  • Reels on Wheels will present award-winning films from the Chicago International Children’s Film Festival to the West and South sides of Chicago – urban, low-income areas which are virtual movie deserts. A primary focus is to re-establish the concept of a neighborhood movie house as a platform for community engagement.

Film Forum (New York, NY) – Decolonize the Screen, 1964-1979

  • This 2-3-week May 2019 series will present 25-30 rarely screened, 16mm and 35mm documentaries and narratives – produced primarily in Africa and Latin America – that chronicle liberation struggles, explore colonial legacies and eschew Western cinematic conventions.

The Film Society of Minneapolis-St. Paul (Minneapolis, MN) – Cine Latino

  • Cine Latino, the Upper Midwest’s only showcase of Spanish-language cinema, puts a spotlight on and gives voice to the stories of Minnesota’s largest immigrant group – native Spanish-speakers from many cultures and countries.

GALA Inc. (Grupo de Artistas LatinoAmericanos) (Washington, DC) – Community Engagement: From the Street to the Screen

  • Support for GALA Theatre’s international film festival featuring contemporary Latin American films with provocative content and innovative techniques. Funding will allow for expanded community programming to engage audiences in vibrant cross-cultural exchanges with emerging Latin American film directors, producers, and actors.

Indigenous Showcase (Seattle, WA) – Indigenous Showcase

  • Indigenous Showcase provides community screenings of Indigenous-made films and educational opportunities in filmmaking.

International Children’s Media Center (Chicago, IL) – Global Girls & WorldScene Film Immersion Residencies

  • The Global Girls/WorldScene Residency & Film Festival is an immersive 16-week curating and filmmaking program for at-risk youth that culminates in a high-profile festival of top-tier independent films. By jurying high-quality international films, participants in jails, shelters and care agencies gain important job skills, self-esteem and personal agency.

International Film Seminars (New York, NY) – Flaherty Seminar

  • The Flaherty Seminar, held every June, brings together filmmakers, curators, educators, students, and film lovers to participate in an intensive, intimate experience that obliterates traditional barriers between makers and audiences.

Morelia International Film Festival (Morelia, Mexico) – First Nations Forum

  • The First Nations Forum 2019 will consist of a four-day workshop, a panel, and two programs of shorts showcasing the work of eight Indigenous women directors from different regions of Mexico.

ReelAbilities International Film Festival (Multiple Cities) – Enhancing Accessibility Options

  • Support provides open captioning and audio description for approx. 30-35 films that will screen to 30,000+ audience members attending 19 ReelAbilities Film Festivals throughout North America

Roger Ebert’s Film Festival (Urbana, IL) – Diversity in Film

  • The Diversity in Film Program will strengthen our commitment to show a series rooted in inclusivity and that expands and extends conversations about understanding, tolerance, and diversity with an underserved community rarely exposed to such films.

San Diego Latino Film Festival (CA) – ¡Que Viva La Raza! Chicano Legacies in Film, Then and Now

  • A multidisciplinary and dynamic celebration of Chicano cinema. Through this showcase, a road map (and preservation initiative) of Chicano history will be created using films released during the height of the Chicano Movement and the present.

The Academy’s Grants program provides financial support to qualifying film festivals, educational institutions and film scholars and supports the Academy’s overall mission to recognize and uphold excellence in the motion picture arts and sciences, inspire imagination and connect the world through the medium of motion pictures. The Academy Grants program has awarded more than $12,000,000 to non-profit institutions and film festivals.


Academy Names Christine Simmons Chief Operating Officer

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has named Christine Simmons to the position of Chief Operating Officer, it was announced today by Academy CEO Dawn Hudson. Simmons, president and COO of the Los Angeles Sparks, will assume her new role in January, reporting directly to Hudson.

Christine Simmons

Simmons will be responsible for the day-to-day management and enhancement of the Academy’s internal organization and infrastructure, with focus on the Academy Foundation, comprised of the Margaret Herrick Library, Academy Film Archive, its educational programs and the Science and Technology Council. She will join leadership in collaborative efforts to fulfill and further the Academy mission, that is to recognize and uphold excellence in the motion picture arts and sciences, inspire imagination, and connect the world through the medium of motion pictures.

“There has been—and continues to be—a sea change in our film community, our Academy, and in the culture at large. Christine brings both nonprofit and corporate management expertise, an ability to implement creative solutions, and a love of film to our Academy. It’s the perfect moment for an innovative thinker,” said Hudson.

The LA Sparks, a founding team of the WNBA, are three-time League champions and one of the League’s most successful franchise business operations. Prior to becoming President and COO, Simmons served as Executive Vice President of Magic Johnson Enterprises where she led the day-to-day operations of the Sparks throughout the team’s first season. Before working at MJE, she held senior positions managing and expanding supplier diversity at both Disney and NBC/Universal Studios.

“I look forward to joining the team and contributing to the innovation and growth of the operational excellence of the Academy. The organization’s efforts to support filmmakers and programs where every person’s story can be told are invaluable,” said Simmons.

Simmons serves on the advisory councils for Women in Sports and Events and Next Play Capital. She previously served as Board President of the UCLA Alumni Association and is a member of the UCLA Foundation’s Board of Directors and the UC Regents. In October 2018, Ebony magazine included her in its “Power 100” list of inspiring African Americans.


Academy’s Science And Technology Council Adds 6 New Members

David Ayer, Rod Bogart, Theo Gluck, Leslie Iwerks, Colette Mullenhoff and Jeff Taylor have accepted invitations to join the Science and Technology Council of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, bringing the Council’s 2018–2019 membership roster to 25.

Ayer is a director, producer and screenwriter whose credits include “Bright,” “Suicide Squad,” “Fury,” “Sabotage,” “End of Watch,” “Street Kings” and “Harsh Times.” He also wrote screenplays for several acclaimed features, including “S.W.A.T.,” “Dark Blue,” “Training Day,” “The Fast and the Furious” and “U-571.” Ayer is the co-founder of the independent studio Cedar Park Entertainment. He became a member of the Academy’s Directors Branch in 2017.

Bogart is an imaging science technologist who has worked for such companies as Industrial Light & Magic, Pixar and HBO. At ILM, he was instrumental in the design, implementation and deployment of the industry standard OpenEXR image format, which is at the core of ACES (Academy Color Encoding System). As the lead color scientist at Pixar, he pioneered file-based workflows with Pixar’s image mastering team and contributed to the design of the system that became the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers Interoperable Master Format (SMPTE IMF). Bogart is a member of the Academy’s Visual Effects Branch, SMPTE and the Visual Effects Society (VES).

A 28-year veteran with Walt Disney Studios, Gluck is the director of library restoration and preservation. Since 2004, he has guided the studio’s restoration program and coordinated the digitization and preservation of a significant portion of the nitrate negatives on the studio’s classic animated features and shorts. During his tenure at Disney, he was part of the post-production team for Disney Character Voices International, and prior to that was the manager of film operations for Buena Vista Pictures Distribution. Gluck is an Academy Member-at-Large and serves on Science and Technology Council’s committees for technology history and education and public programs.

Director-producer Iwerks earned an Oscar® nomination for the documentary short “Recycled Life” and an Emmy® nomination for “The Pixar Story.” For more than a decade, she has produced, directed and edited feature and short documentaries, television specials, tributes, corporate films and digital content. Other credits include “Citizen Hearst,” “Industrial Light & Magic: Creating the Impossible,” “The Hand behind the Mouse – The Ub Iwerks Story,” and such environmental and social issue documentaries as “Pipe Dreams” and “Downstream.” She is a member of the Academy’s Documentary Branch, the Producers Guild of America and the International Documentary Association.

Mullenhoff is a research and development engineer at Industrial Light & Magic. In 2014, she was recognized with an Academy Technical Achievement Award for her contributions to the ILM Shape Sculpting System. Her software has been used in the production of numerous films, including “Ready Player One,” “Transformers: Dark of the Moon” and “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End.” She became a member of the Academy’s Visual Effects Branch in 2017.

Taylor is chief engineer of post production at Universal Studios, where he invented MediaSeal, serving as the product director and receiving three additional patents. He has designed numerous multi-audio-format re-recording stages (Atmos, DTS-X, IMAX), ADR and Foley rooms, screening theaters and Universal’s BluWave Audio facility. In his 38-year career, he also worked for The Droid Works, a division of Lucasfilm Ltd., where he wrote software for and trained editors on the EditDroid picture editing system; consulted on the digital technology transformation of the animation department at Walt Disney Pictures Animation Group; and was an early pioneer of the SDDS system at Sony Pictures. Taylor is a member of the Academy’s Sound Branch, Audio Engineering Society (AES), SMPTE and the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.

The Council co-chairs for 2018–2019 are Wendy Aylsworth and Visual Effects Branch governor Craig Barron.

The Council’s 17 other returning members are Academy president John Bailey, Nafees Bin Zafar, Maryann Brandon, Rob Bredow, Annie Chang, Bill Corso, Douglas Greenfield, Rob Hummel, Andrea Kalas, Academy governor John Knoll, Ai-Ling Lee, Beverly Pasterczyk, Cary Phillips, Douglas Roble, Leon Silverman, Academy governor Michael Tronick and Steve Yedlin.

Established in 2003 by the Academy’s Board of Governors, the Science and Technology Council provides a forum for the exchange of information, promotes cooperation among diverse technological interests within the industry, sponsors publications, fosters educational activities, and preserves the history of the science and technology of motion pictures.


Academy Reveals Winning Nicholl Screenwriters

Scripts to be performed at live read in November

Three individuals and one writing team have been selected as winners of the 2018 Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting competition.  The fellows will each receive a $35,000 prize, the first installment of which will be distributed at the Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting Awards Presentation & Live Read on Thursday, November 8, at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills.  For the sixth consecutive year, an ensemble of actors will read selected scenes from the winning scripts.

The 2018 winners are (listed alphabetically by author):

  • Allison Buckmelter and Nicolas Buckmelter, “American Refugee”
  • Joey Clarke, Jr., “Miles”
  • Grace Sherman, “Numbers and Words”
  • Wenonah Wilms, “Horsehead Girls”

A total of 6,895 scripts were submitted for this year’s competition.  Nine individual screenwriters and one writing team were selected as finalists.  Their scripts were then read and judged by the Academy Nicholl Fellowships Committee, who ultimately voted the winners.

The 2018 finalists are (listed alphabetically by author):

  • Avi Glick, “A Yacht in the Apache Junction”
  • Ernestina Juárez, “Labyrinth of Destiny”
  • Neal McLaughlin, “The Sunshine Ward”
  • Daniel Miska, “The Soldier That Wagged Her Tail”
  • Gabriel Mizrahi, “Beside Ourselves”
  • Jordan Trippeer, “Air”

Fellowships are awarded with the understanding that the recipients will each complete a feature-length screenplay during their fellowship year.  The Academy acquires no rights to the works of Nicholl fellows and does not involve itself commercially in any way with their completed scripts.

The Academy Nicholl Fellowships Committee is chaired by Academy Writers Branch Governor Robin Swicord.  The members of the committee are Eva Marie Saint (Actors Branch); Steven Poster (Cinematographers Branch); Marcus Hu and William Mechanic (Executives Branch); James Plannette and Stephen Ujlaki (Members-at-Large); Stephanie Allain, Albert Berger, Julia Chasman, Julie Lynn, Peter Samuelson and Robert W. Shapiro (Producers Branch); Jennifer Yuh Nelson (Short Films and Feature Animation Branch); Bobbi Banks (Sound Branch); and Tina Gordon Chism, Eric Heisserer, Larry Karaszewski, Dan Petrie Jr., Misan Sagay, Kirsten Smith, Dana Stevens and Tyger Williams (Writers Branch).

The global competition, which aims to identify and encourage talented new screenwriters, has awarded 156 fellowships since it began in 1986.  In 2018 several past Nicholl fellows added to their feature film and television credits:

  • Elizabeth Chomko directed her Nicholl-winning script “What They Had,” which premiered at Sundance.
  • Ehren Kruger produced “Ophelia,” which also premiered at Sundance.
  • Kurt Kuenne directed an episode of NBC’s “The Blacklist.”
  • Tianna Langham and Chris Bessounian are writers on Fox Television’s “The Resident.”
  • Terri Miller and Andrew Marlowe are executive producers and creators of ABC’s “Take Two.”
  • Lee Patterson was a writer on USA’s “Colony.”
  • Rebecca Sonnenshine is a co-executive producer and writer on the Cinemax series “Outcast.”
  • Barbara Stepansky won a 2018 WGA Award in the Long Form Original category for her screenplay for the Lifetime original movie “Flint.”

Tickets for the 2018 Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting Awards Presentation & Live Read are now available at  Casting for the live read will be announced at a later date.


‘The Exorcist’ 45th Anniversary, ‘The War Room’ 25th Anniversary, ‘A Christmas Story’ Headline The Academy’s Fall Screenings

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced its fall programming lineup for both Los Angeles and New York. A full event schedule and ticket information can be found here:

Schedule is as follows; participants listed will be in attendance (schedules permitting):


Edgar G. Ulmer’s “Detour” (1945) – September 17, 7:30 p.m.
Linwood Dunn Theater, Hollywood
With special guest Arianne Ulmer Cipes.  Restored by the Academy Film Archive and The Film Foundation in collaboration with Cinémathèque Royale de Belgique, the Museum of Modern Art and the Cinémathèque Française. Restoration funding provided by the George Lucas Family Foundation.

Women in Indie Animation – September 21, 7 p.m.
Academy at Metrograph, New York City
With filmmakers Signe Baumane, Emily Hubley, Candy Kugel and Debra Solomon.  Moderated by Oscar®-winning producer Peggy Stern.

“Food, Inc.” (2009) – September 24, 7:30 p.m.
Samuel Goldwyn Theater, Beverly Hills
With Oscar-nominated director Robert Kenner, Oscar-nominated producer Elise Pearlstein, film subject Carole Morison, chef Roy Choi, Food Forward founder and executive director Rick Nahmias.  Moderated by chef, author and radio host Evan Kleiman.  Presented in partnership with the International Documentary Association (IDA), Participant Media and River Road Entertainment.

“Salesman” (1969) – September 27, 7:30 p.m.
Linwood Dunn Theater, Hollywood
With special guest Rebekah Maysles.  Featuring a 35mm print restored by the Academy Film Archive and The Film Foundation, with funding provided by the George Lucas Family Foundation.  Presented in partnership with the International Documentary Association (IDA).


4th Annual Careers in Film Summit – October 6, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Samuel Goldwyn Theater, Beverly Hills
Academy members and film professionals share their expertise on careers in the motion picture industry in this day-long series of panel discussions.

“The War Room” (1993) 25th Anniversary – October 9, 7:30 p.m.
Samuel Goldwyn Theater, Beverly Hills
With Oscar-nominated directors Chris Hegedus and D.A. Pennebaker, and producers R.J. Cutler, Wendy Ettinger and Frazer Pennebaker.  Additional panelists to be announced.

45th Student Academy Awards – October 11, 7 p.m.
Samuel Goldwyn Theater, Beverly Hills
The winning student filmmakers will receive their medal placements – gold, silver, bronze – in seven award categories. Gold medal-winning films will be screened after the ceremony.

An Evening with special effects artist Tom Savini – October 13, 7 p.m.
Academy at Metrograph, New York City
In-person appearance by producer, actor and special effects artist Tom Savini (“Dawn of The Dead”), featuring clips from his films and onstage conversation.  Followed by a presentation of “From Dusk Till Dawn” (1996).

“The Exorcist” (1973) 45th Anniversary – October 22, 7:30 p.m.
Samuel Goldwyn Theater, Beverly Hills
With Oscar-nominated director William Friedkin and Oscar-nominated actress Ellen Burstyn.


Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting Awards & Live Read – November 8, 7:30 p.m.
Samuel Goldwyn Theater, Beverly Hills
An ensemble of actors (to be announced) will read selected scenes from the winning scripts.

“The Barefoot Contessa” (1954) – November 16, 7 p.m.
Academy at Metrograph, New York City
With film critic and author Karina Longworth.


“A Christmas Story” (1983) – December 10, 7:30 p.m.
Samuel Goldwyn Theater, Beverly Hills
With actor Peter Billingsley.

Tickets for Los Angeles-based events are $5 for the general public and $3 for Academy members and students with a valid I.D. and will be available online at  Tickets to “Academy at Metrograph” events can be purchased via Metrograph’s website and are $15.  Doors open one hour prior to each event.  All ticketed seating is unreserved.  For more information, visit or call (310) 247-3600.


Academy Reveals 2018 Student Academy Award® Winners


The Academy has voted 19 students as winners of the Student Academy Awards® 45th competition.  This year, the Student Academy Awards competition received a total of 1,582 entries from 278 domestic and 122 international colleges and universities, which were voted upon by a record number of Academy members.  The 2018 winners join the ranks of such past Student Academy Award winners as Patricia Cardoso, Pete Docter, Cary Fukunaga, John Lasseter, Spike Lee, Trey Parker, Patricia Riggen and Robert Zemeckis.

The winners are (listed alphabetically by film title):

Alternative (Domestic Film Schools)

Shae Demandt, “Reanimated,” Florida State University

Animation (Domestic Film Schools)

Yu Yu, “Daisy,” University of Southern California
Hanna Kim, “Raccoon and the Light,” California Institute of the Arts
Eaza Shukla, “Re-Gifted,” Ringling College of Art and Design

Animation (International Film Schools)

Pierre Perveyrie, Maximilien Bougeois, Marine Goalard, Irina Nguyen-Duc and Quentin Dubois, “The Green Bird,” MOPA

Documentary (Domestic Film Schools)

Mathieu Faure, “An Edited Life,” New York University
Lauren Schwartzman, “Dust Rising,” University of California, Berkeley
Yiying Li, “Love & Loss,” University of Southern California

Documentary (International Film Schools)

Mart Bira, “Nomadic Doctor,” University of Hertfordshire

Narrative (Domestic Film Schools)

Brian Robau, “Esta Es Tu Cuba”/“This Is Your Cuba,” Chapman University
Kelley Kali, “Lalo’s House,” University of Southern California
Hua Tong, “Spring Flower,” University of Southern California

Narrative (International Film Schools)

István Kovács, “A Siege,” University of Theatre and Film Arts, Budapest
Lisa Gertsch, “Almost Everything,” Zurich University of the Arts
Jonatan Etzler, “Get Ready with Me,” Stockholm Academy of the Arts

First-time honors go to MOPA and the University of Hertfordshire.  This year, the Student Academy Awards honors one returning winner in the Domestic Narrative category, Brian Robau, a Silver Medal winner in 2016 for “It’s Just a Gun.” Additionally, for the first time, a team of five directors is being honored in the International Animation category.  Previously the limit had been two directors that could be honored per film.

All Student Academy Award-winning films are eligible to compete for 2018 Oscars® in the Animated Short Film, Live Action Short Film or Documentary Short Subject category.  Past winners have gone on to receive 59 Oscar nominations and have won or shared 11 awards. This past year two 2017 Student Academy Award winners received Oscar nominations in the Live Action Short Film category: Kevin Wilson, Jr., a Gold Medal winner in the Domestic Narrative category for “My Nephew Emmett,” and Katja Benrath, a Gold Medal winner in the International Narrative category for “Watu Wote/All of Us.”

Students will arrive in Los Angeles for a week of industry activities that will culminate in the awards ceremony on Thursday, October 11, at 7:30 p.m., at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills.  The medal placements – gold, silver and bronze – in the seven award categories will be announced at the ceremony.

The 45th Student Academy Awards ceremony on Thursday, October 11 is free and open to the public, but advance tickets are required.  Tickets may be obtained online at starting today.  Any remaining tickets will be made available at the door on the evening of the event.  The Samuel Goldwyn Theater is located at 8949 Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills.

The Student Academy Awards were established in 1972 to provide a platform for emerging global talent by creating opportunities within the industry to showcase their work.


Academy Determines New Oscars® Category Merits Further Study

While remaining committed to celebrating a wide spectrum of movies, the Academy announced today that it will not present the new Oscars® category at the upcoming 91st awards. The Academy recognized that implementing any new award nine months into the year creates challenges for films that have already been released. The Board of Governors continues to be actively engaged in discussions, and will examine and seek additional input regarding this category.

“There has been a wide range of reactions to the introduction of a new award, and we recognize the need for further discussion with our members,” said Academy CEO Dawn Hudson. “We have made changes to the Oscars over the years—including this year—and we will continue to evolve while also respecting the incredible legacy of the last 90 years.”

Changes to the 91st Oscars (2019) include restructuring and shortening the length of the telecast to three hours. To honor all 24 award categories, six to eight categories will be presented live, in the Dolby Theatre®, during commercial breaks. The winning moments will then be edited and aired later in the broadcast. Selected categories will be rotated each year. The Academy will collaborate with the show producer(s) to select these categories.

The Board of Governors also voted to move up the date of the 92nd Oscars telecast to Sunday, February 9, 2020, from the previously announced February 23. The date change in the timeline will not affect awards eligibility dates or the voting process.

The key dates for the 2019 awards season are as follows:

  • Saturday, November 16, 2019     Governors Awards
  • Thursday, January 2, 2020           Nominations voting opens
  • Tuesday, January 7, 2020            Nominations voting closes
  • Monday, January 13, 2020           Oscar Nominations Announcement
  • Monday, January 27, 2020           Oscar Nominees Luncheon
  • Thursday, January 30, 2020         Finals voting opens
  • Tuesday, February 4, 2020           Finals voting closes
  • Sunday, February 9, 2020            92nd Oscars

Starting in 2020, the Scientific and Technical Awards will move to June, as the technologies honored do not represent achievements within a specific awards year.

The 91st Oscars will be held on Sunday, February 24, 2019, at the Dolby Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center® in Hollywood, and will be televised live by the ABC Television Network. The Oscars also will be televised live in more than 225 countries and territories worldwide.