The Hobbit picks up technical Oscar

Simon Clutterbuck, James Jacobs and Dr. Richard Dorlin The team from The Hobbit picked up an Academy plaque for Scientific and Engineering

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey has earned its first Academy Award after being recognised at an early pre-Oscar ceremony in Los Angeles.

The Scientific and Technical Achievement Awards recognize people who have made significant behind-the-scenes contributions to movie making.

The ceremony, hosted by Star Trek co-stars Chris Pine and Zoe Saldana, gave nine awards to 25 people.

Those responsible for the computer graphics in Shrek were also honoured.

Unlike the main Oscars ceremony, which will be held on Sunday, 24 February and will only recognise movie achievements from 2012, the Scientific and Technical Awards gave awards to behind-the-scenes innovators whose breakthroughs in computer technology and other fields have helped make several feature films over a number of years.

Gollum in a scene from The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey The technique makes Gollum appear more lifelike

Simon Clutterbuck, James Jacobs and Dr. Richard Dorling won for inventing a technique which has made huge advances in bringing to life computer-generated characters such as Gollum in Peter Jackson's The Hobbit.

Richard Mall received perhaps the greatest applause of the night, for his invention of the Matthews Max Menace Arm, a portable device which allows studio lights to be moved and positioned all over a set, often where normal lighting cannot be used because of on-site restrictions or other difficult conditions.

"I am a little humbled to be up here with all this technology, because basically I built something in my garage," Mall said to applause and cheers. He thanked his wife for enduring all the strange noises that had come out of that garage.

His invention has been sold to over 40 countries and used in more than 300 films.

Lawrence Kesteloot, Drew Olbrich, and Daniel Wexler at DreamWorks were honoured with an Academy certificate for the creating one of the most versatile lighting delivery systems in film production,

The system, which combines light, colour and rendering in one, was used in the likes of Shrek and Madagascar.

Portions of the event will be seen during the televised Oscars ceremony later this month.

More on This Story

OSCARS 2013

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Entertainment & Arts stories

RSS

Features & Analysis

  • French luxury Tea House, Mariage Freres display of tea pots Tea for tu

    France falls back in love with tea - but don't expect a British cuppa


  • Woman in swimming pool Green stuff

    The element that makes a familiar smell when mixed with urine


  • People take part in an egg-cracking contest in the village of Mokrin, 120km (75 miles) north of Belgrade, Serbia on 20 April 2014In pictures

    Images from around the world as Christians mark Easter Sunday


  • Female model's bottom in leopard skin trousers as she walks up the catwalkBum deal

    Why budget buttock ops can be bad for your health


Elsewhere on the BBC

  • ITChild's play

    It's never been easier for small businesses to get their message out to the world

Programmes

  • An aerial shot shows the Olympic Stadium, which is closed for repair works on its roof, in Rio de Janeiro March 28, 2014.Extra Time Watch

    Will Rio be ready in time to host the Olympics in 2016? The IOC president gives his verdict

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.