SMPTE Awards Gala to Offer Interactive Virtual Celebration

WHITE PLAINS, NY– The SMPTE Awards will be presented this year to a range of industry luminaries and next generation leaders at the SMPTE Awards Gala, a virtual event that will take place in two ceremonies on November 30 and December 1.

Registration is free for this year’s event, which will include a unique social reception and a program designed to allow attendees to engage and celebrate with friends and colleagues from around the world, the organization said.

The awards gala takes place on an interactive platform designed for award ceremonies so that guests can chat with each other via text and video while watching the award ceremony. The “doors” open one hour before the start of each gala program, giving guests time to participate in a virtual cocktail party, find their table and chat with other guests.

“This year’s gala takes advantage of a virtual format to make the awards ceremony more accessible than ever,” said SMPTE CEO Barbara Lange. “We have four wonderful hosts lined up to recognize the impressive group of 2021 laureates, and we are proud to present the event on a truly interactive virtual platform that will give guests a real opportunity to meet, connect and share. experience in a meaningful way. “

The November 30 awards show takes place at 10:30 a.m. PST, 6:30 p.m. UTC / GMT, 3:30 p.m. JST (+1).

It will be moderated by Sally Hattori, Executive Director of Advanced Technology at Walt Disney Studios and Director of Education SMPTE; Josh Pines, official troublemaker at Technicolor and chair of the Natalie M. and Herbert T. Kalmus 2021 Medal Award Committee.

During the event, Girish Balakrishnan (Director, Virtual Production, Netflix) will be awarded the Progress Medal in recognition of his long-term commitment and his continued democratization of virtual production methodologies, which has resulted in a breakthrough significant world in the field and influenced how feature films and television shows are produced today. Balakrishnan is a technological pioneer who ushers in a new era of film production, SMPTE said.

Christopher J. Cookson (retired, Warner Bros.) will be granted Honorary Fellow status in recognition of his pioneering efforts to advance technology in the production and distribution of television and motion pictures. It has embraced the advancement of high definition and ultra high definition video and has been instrumental in the successful development and standardization of the digital video disc (DVD) industry, digital cinema and digital mezzanine files for distribution. automated. Cookson holds numerous patents in the fields of optical discs and film restoration.

The December 1 awards event will begin at 4:30 p.m. PST, 12:30 a.m. UTC / GMT (+1), 9:30 a.m. JST (+1).

It will be hosted by Liz Pieri, Perceptual Image Processing Engineer on the Visual Display Experience team at Apple and SMPTE Director of Education; Jim Skinner, Senior Technical Program Manager for VR and AR Devices at Facebook and SMPTE Governor-at-Large

Wendy Aylsworth (CEO, Walden Pond – formerly of Warner Bros.) will receive the Progress Medal in recognition of her long career, during which she helped shape the way multimedia content is distributed in homes and theaters across Canada. whole world. Throughout the years of the great media transition from analog to digital, Aylsworth has been an inspiration and beacon for media technology and strategy, inspiring colleagues nationally and internationally, and always ready to help and encourage others, SMPTE said.

Peter Jackson (Director, Screenwriter and Film Producer) will receive the title of Honorary Fellow in recognition of his outstanding technical contributions to the advancement of engineering in film and allied arts and sciences. Jackson led his technology company, WETA Digital, in the development of revolutionary digital effects for the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy, including a software system for generating intelligent crowds for battle scenes and advanced capture techniques. of movement. The “The Hobbit” trilogy included the first films to be captured and exhibited in 3D at 48 frames per second, which resulted in significant advances in equipment and production.

David Sarnoff (1891 – 1971) will be posthumously named to the Society’s Honor Roll in recognition of his visionary leadership in the advancement and implementation of color television and other communication technologies. His realization that radio signals could be “broadcast” to many rather than a few revolutionized mass communication, starting with radio and progressing to television. Sarnoff has established a highly productive and efficient research and development laboratory to fuel new communication technologies. His support for innovation at RCA Laboratories in Princeton, New Jersey, led to the establishment of the American color television standard in 1953, which became the basis for monochrome compatible color television systems around the world.

Further information on all of the 2021 winners can be found on the SMPTE awards page at along with details on how to book a congratulatory announcement in the pre-show of the event, become a sponsor of the gala, or get a sponsored table, SMPTE said.

Registrations are now open here.

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Perry A. Thomasson