Friday 28 July 2017

Elizabeth Banks honours engineers

Elizabeth Banks hosted the Scientific and Technical Academy Awards
Elizabeth Banks hosted the Scientific and Technical Academy Awards

Elizabeth Banks has hosted a ceremony recognising scientific and technical achievements in moviemaking.

Some 45 engineers behind the latest in ambient occlusion, digital intermediate processing, sub-pixel offsets and micro-positioning platforms were celebrated at a gala at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel, presented by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and hosted by the Scrubs actress.

The 36-year-old joked that she would "read - yet not fully understand - our journey through the scientific and technical awards".

Wearing a sparkling white gown and standing in front of four giant Oscar statues, Elizabeth presented 15 plaques and certificates to scientists from Germany, Sweden, Austria, England, New Zealand, Hungary, Denmark, Japan and the US.

The men were honoured for developing systems to improve colour on film, advancing performance-capture technology, creating new means to light actors in computer-generated scenes and building high-tech scanners used in modern filmmaking.

The results of their work can be seen in films such as King Kong, The Lord Of The Rings, Spider-Man 2 and Iron Man.

One winner tried to explain the genesis of his invention on stage to Elizabeth, who shrugged and smiled playfully.

The star, whose credits include Seabiscuit and The 40-Year-Old Virgin, effortlessly discussed film emulsion technology, spectral response and point-based colour bleeding for indirect illuminations as she presented the awards with a lot of help from a teleprompter.

Academy president Tom Sherak praised the actress for her flawless handling of the high-tech jargon - whether or not she fully understood it. Elizabeth called the Sci-Tech ceremony "a great reminder of everything that goes into the finished product we see in movie theatres".

"I applaud your nerd-dom," she said.

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