Filmmaker and actor Jon Favreau, who directed Iron Man, Iron Man 2, Chef, The Jungle Book, and currently at work on the live-action The Lion King has been chosen to become the next recipient of the Visual Effects Society’s Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his valuable contributions to filmed entertainment. This comes after his Jungle Book earned him five awards at last year’s VES Awards, included the top honor for Best Photoreal Feature. His new lifetime achievement award will be presented at the 16th Annual VES Awards on Feb. 13, 2018 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.
The VES Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes an outstanding body of work that has significantly contributed to the art and/or science of the visual effects industry. Previous winners of the VES Lifetime Achievement Award have included James Cameron, Steven Spielberg, Ray Harryhausen, George Lucas, Robert Zemeckis, John Dykstra, Frank Marshall and Kathleen Kennedy, Sir Ridley Scott and Ken Ralston.
Favreau is being singled out for his boundary-breaking use of visual effects “to create a seamless and invisible background.”
Favreau’s creative vision and inventive techniques have previously garnered him the Harold Lloyd Award for filmmaking from the Advanced Imaging Society and Virtual Reality Society, the Filmmaker Award from the Cinema Audio Society.
“Jon Favreau has introduced the reinvention of a new style of film that demands visual effects artists to push beyond the boundaries of what can and has been done before,” said Mike Chambers, VES Board Chair. “He has created exceptionally humanistic stories through his vision, unique approach to storytelling and full embrace of emerging technology to enhance the moviegoing experience. With this journeyman at the helm, having acted, written, directed and produced across many break-through projects, we expect to witness new kinds of entertainment from Jon that utilize VFX at its core and help redefine entertainment on a global level. For this, and more, we are honored to award him with the prestigious Visual Effects Society Lifetime Achievement Award.”
Before taking on the Disney live-action films, Favreau wrote, directed and starred in Open Road’s Chef; he also created the Gnomes & Goblins VR experience with Wevr and Reality One. He is slated to direct The Second Jungle Book and will produce Avengers: Infinity War and its untitled sequel.
Favreau also directed the Dreamworks/Universal feature Cowboys & Aliens and the holiday film Elf which starred Will Ferrell at New Line Cinema. Another credit includes Zathura, a children’s adventure film at Sony. He made his feature film directorial debut with Artisan Entertainment’s Made, which he also wrote, and originally established himself as a writer with the comedy Swingers.
Favreau also serves as third Vice President of the Directors Guild of America, and is a board member for the American Cinematheque.