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EDITIONS
 Tuesday, 7 January, 2003, 11:04 GMT
Technical skills get Oscar nods
Ice Age
State-of-the-art technology was used in Ice Age
Prestigious Oscar statuettes are to be handed out for technical achievement in film as part of this year's Academy Awards, in a step up from the usual plaques and certificates.

Just three statuettes will be given at the Scientific and Technical Academy Awards on 1 March, three weeks before the main ceremony.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has unveiled the list of recipients.

Topping the list is a firm called Alias/Wavefront, which will receive a statuette of merit for developing a piece of three-dimensional special effects software dubbed Maya.

The computer software generates 3D characters that are "indistinguishable from live-action film".

Scene from Spider Man movie
The Spider-Man movie broke US box office records
Maya was widely used on hit films such as Spider-Man, Ice Age and Hollow Man.

Also being honoured are camera equipment manufacturers Arnold and Richter Cine Technik and Panavision Inc.

The two firms will both receive statuettes for their work in developing state-of-the-art movie cameras.

The academy will also hand out four plaques to its scientific and engineering award honourees as well as six certificates to its technical achievement winners.

Achievements receiving the awards do not have to have been introduced during 2002, and will be considered only if "they have a proven track record showcasing successful and repeated use in the film industry", the academy said.

Achievements

The winners include 13 software and audio engineers who share in the prestige of winning four academy plaques.

There are also 11 joint recipients of certificates honouring six other technical achievements.

The Oscars were first handed out at a simple ceremony in Hollywood in 1928 and will be hosted this year in their new home - The Kodak Theatre - close to where the show began.

See also:

06 Jan 03 | Film
01 Jan 03 | Film
05 Nov 01 | Film
10 Sep 01 | dot life
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