PGA Creates Innovation Award for Virtual and Augmented Reality

Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality get recognition for the 31st Annual Producers Guild Awards, which seek to embrace change.
In DreamWorks Animation’s How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World, directed by Dean DeBlois, the Viking village of Berk has become a chaotic dragon utopia.
"How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World"
© 2019 DreamWorks Animation LLC

The Producers Guild of America (PGA) has created a new Innovation Award in recognition of recent tech strides made by Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, and other emerging media. The inaugural award honoring “exceptional distinctiveness, inventiveness, and impact…in expanding the conventions of program format, content, and audience interaction, production technique, and delivery” will be presented, along with other key awards, at a nominee celebration prior to the 31st Annual Producers Guild Awards on January 18, 2020.

“As producers and storytellers, we recognize that it is important to embrace change in a time of expansion and exploration of new ideas in entertainment,” said Gail Berman and Lucy Fisher, presidents of the Producers Guild of America, in a prepared statement. “This new award will allow our members to celebrate the innovations we are making as producers to further the advancement of content through new technology and platforms.”

The innovations encompass immersive theme park attractions (Walt Disney Imagineering’s “Pandora” and “Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge”) along with movie and TV-inspired VR adventures (DreamWorks Animation’s “How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World” VR Experience). The entries that will be reviewed and voted on by a jury of blue-ribbon experts in the field of new media include:

Kim Adams (Co-founder, Adventure Lab)
Nancy Bennett (Chief Creative Officer and founding member, Two Bit Circus)
Thomas Geraghty (Director, Technology & Innovation, Universal Parks)
Doug Herzog (Consultant, Quibi)
Lisa Hsia (Executive Vice President, Bravo, Oxygen, Universal Kids Digital Media)
Lori McCreary (CEO, Clickstar, Inc.; Founder and CEO, Revelations Entertainment)
Dr. Jacquelyn Ford Morie (Founder and Chief Scientist, All These Worlds LLC.)
Joanna Popper (Global Head of VR for Location Based Experience, Hewlett Packard)
Yelena Rachitsky (Executive Producer of Experiences at Oculus)
Albert Rizzo (Director, Medial Virtual Reality, USC Institute for Creative Technologies)
Ira Rubenstein (Chief Digital & Marketing Officer, Public Broadcasting Service)
Sam Russo (Vice President, Attraction Development, Herschend Family Entertainment)
Ted Schilowitz (Futurist in Residence, Paramount Pictures & 20th Century Fox)
Christina Lee Storm (VP Business Operations, Strategy & Emerging Technology, DreamWorks Animation)
Shelby Jiggets-Tivony (VP, Creative & Advanced Development, Disney Parks Live Entertainment – Walt Disney Imagineering)

The application period is open and the deadline for submission is Friday, November 15. The rules are available and applications may be submitted at the Producers Guild website.

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