In an age of push-button solutions, and the mantra ‘There Must be an App for That!’ two-time Emmy Award winner Todd Masters, Founder & President of Character FX studio MastersFX,  and his team will present AN EVENING CELEBRATING PRACTICAL FX on Monday, January 13, and will offer a behind-the-scenes look at the making of Demon Knight.

The Jan 13th evening has been inspired by the fact that the Visual Effects Society has made the decision to reinstate their “Practical/Special FX” Award into their annual VES Award ceremonies, which will be held on January 29th. Concurrently, Masters and his team will be showcasing their outstanding Practical FX work which was featured in the classic movie Tales from the Crypt: Demon Knight, which will mark the 25th anniversary of its release.

Masters says he is amazed at just how prevalent – and in-demand – practical, on-set, special FX continue to be, even within today’s highly digital universe, in the making of television shows and feature films around the world. “Hand-crafted make-up effects, dummies, fake bodies, puppets, aliens, props, and countless types of monsters, have been – and remain – the core of our business for over 30 years now. Our practical FX work is still in high-demand, and, if anything, seems to be more popular with directors and producers of TV series and features than ever before.”

He adds, “The fact that the Visual Effects Society has FINALLY brought back the ‘Practical FX Award’ for their 2020 VES Awards ceremonies is a very big deal for our industry! We are thrilled and delighted that our specialized niche within the FX realm remains strong, important, impactful, engaging. Our work is finally, to paraphrase Rodney Dangerfield, ‘Getting Some Respect’ within the entertainment community!”

According to a letter distributed to the VES membership by the Visual Effects Society in October 2018 by Mike Chambers, Chair, VES Board of Directors: “The Visual Effects Society is excited to announce the reintroduction of the award for Outstanding Special (Practical) Effects in a Photoreal Project, to be bestowed at the 18th Annual VES Awards on January 29, 2020. We brought back this award to recognize and celebrate a key component of the visual effects artistry created each year, and are asking for your support. The VES is working to raise awareness of the award among studios, production companies, VFX production facilities and other stakeholders.”

Adds Mike Elizalde, President/Artistic Director, Spectral Motion, Inc., “Since the dawn of visual effects in film, practical effects have played a central role in achieving the magic we see on the screen. Georges Méliès pioneered practical effects done in-camera, and practical effects continue to be an effective medium for enhancing narrative. I am beyond thrilled that the Visual Effects Society will (finally) be recognizing the value of our work in bringing a story to life.”


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