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HPA 2023 Awards Fetes Creatives, the Post Industry


On the night of November 28, the star of the 2023 HPA Awards was the post industry itself, which has been battered by the Writer’s Guild and Screen Actors Guild strikes. In 2023, untold numbers of people in this media sector lost their livelihood and businesses shuttered their doors. Professionals in the industry had to dig deep to survive. To that end, rather than celebrating a person with a Lifetime Achievement Award, the HPA 2023 Awards ended with a short HPA-produced film described as “a heartfelt salute to the resilient members of the post production community.” The film was directed by Origin Point creative director Clyde Bessey and included commentary from numerous industry figures.

This year’s HPA Awards was also the first time the event was held at the Academy of TV Arts & Science’s North Hollywood headquarters, which offered an ideal outdoor/indoor spot for pre-show festivities and a state-of-the-art theater for the awards. HPA President Seth Hallen welcomed attendees, noting that this was the 18th Annual Awards show. He acknowledged that the bad timing of the strikes hitting shortly after the industry came back from COVID-19, and thanked the HPA Board of Directors, HPA staff and the all-volunteer awards committee. “Finally,” he said to the audience, “Thanks to all of you. You’re all the champions of this post production industry.”

The top award winner for theatrical motion pictures was Oppenheimer, which walked away with both Outstanding Color Grading and Outstanding Editing Awards for motion pictures. Other Outstanding Editing awards went to HBO’s White Lotus – Arrivederci episode and Barry – A Nice Meal episode. A Color Grading Award also went to Spider-Man Across the Spider-Verse, and, in the sound category, John Wick 4 and The Last of Us – Infected took honors. A complete list of nominees and winners is below.

The HPA Judges Award for Creativity & Innovation went to the new Las Vegas attraction, Sphere, at 160,000 square feet, the world’s largest spherical structure, built by Madison Square Gardens for $2.3 billion dollars. The Sphere required the creation of new technology, including a new camera, and also produced a live U2 concert and director Darren Aronofsky’s immersive experience “Postcards From Earth” for its debut. Andrew Shulkind, Sphere Entertainment senior vice president of capture & innovation, accepted the award, noting that Sphere is “not just a venue but a new medium.” Indeed, the HPA jury for this award noted Sphere’s “exhilarating new type of immersive entertainment and shared audience experience.

The Engineering Excellence Award went to Adobe for the new Text-Based Editing feature of its Premiere Pro editor; Flanders Scientific for its XMP550 50-inch UHD resolution HDR and SDR reference masting monitor; Kino Flo for its Mimik 120-image-based lighting fixture for use with virtual production; and an honorable mention to stYpe, for its StypeLand XR plug-in to map graphics into LED panels. 

Sony Pictures Entertainment executive vice president of asset management, film restoration and digital mastering Grover Crisp introduced the new Restoration award, which pitted five worthy films against each other: “Casablance” (the winner); “Disney’s “Cinderella (1950); “Cimarron” (1931); and “Winds of Chance” (1925).

Complete list of HPA 2023 Awards nominees & winners (in bold) 

Outstanding Color Grading – Live Action Theatrical Feature

Yvan Lucas // Company 3

“The Fabelmans”
Michael Hatzer // Picture Shop

“Asteroid City”
Gareth Spensley // Company 3

Kostas Theodosiou, Kristen Zimmerman // FotoKem

Tim Masick // Company 3

Outstanding Color Grading – Animated Theatrical Feature

Susan Brunig // Pixar Animation Studios

“The Super Mario Bros. Movie”
Jason Hanel // Company 3

“Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse”
Natasha Leonnet // Picture Shop

“Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem”
Mitch Paulson // Company 3

Outstanding Color Grading – Live Action Episode or Non-Theatrical Feature

“Swarm – Stung”
Alastor Pan Arnold // Keep Me Posted

“Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty – One Ring Don’t Make a Dynasty”
Walter Volpatto // Company 3

“American Gigolo – Pilot”
Shane Harris // Picture Shop

“Great Expectations – Episode 2”
Toby Tomkins // Harbor

“Wednesday – Wednesday’s Child Is Full of Woe”
Siggy Ferstl// Company 3

Outstanding Color Grading – Documentary

Sam Daley // Light Iron

“Bono & The Edge: A Sort of Homecoming with Dave Letterman”
Taylor Black // Apache

“Still: A Michael J. Fox Movie”
Stefan Sonnenfeld, Adam Nazarenko // Company 3

“Chimp Empire – Paradise”
Blair Wallace // Evolutions Post Production

“Shaq – From Shaquille to Shaq”
Taylor Black // Apache

Outstanding Color Grading – Commercial

Zara – “Man SS23 Studio Collection”
Tim Masick // Company 3

Levi’s – “One Fair Exchange in the Greatest Story Ever Worn”
Sofie Borup // Company 3

Expedia – “Wisdom & Obi”
Mark Gethin // Trafik

Duracell x Williams Racing – “Scream”
Tyler Roth // Company 3

Belvedere – “Daniel Craig”
Matthieu Toullet // Company 3

Outstanding Editing – Theatrical Feature
Sponsored by Blackmagic Design

Nick Houy, ACE

“Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One”
Eddie Hamilton, ACE

Jennifer Lame, ACE

“Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse”
Michael Andrews, ACE

Monika Willi

Outstanding Editing – Episode or Non-Theatrical Feature (30 Minutes and Under)
Sponsored by Blackmagic Design

“The Righteous Gemstones – Burn for Burn, Wound for Wound, Stripe for Stripe”
Justin Bourret, ACE

“Barry – it takes a psycho”
Franky Guttman, ACE

“What We Do in the Shadows – Local News”
A.J. Dickerson, ACE, Thomas Calderón

“Barry – a nice meal”
Ali Greer, ACE

“How To With John Wilson – How To Watch Birds”
Cori Wapnowska

Outstanding Editing – Episode or Non-Theatrical Feature (Over 30 Minutes)
Sponsored by Blackmagic Design

“The Last of Us – Endure and Survive”
Timothy A. Good, ACE, Emily Mendez

“White House Plumbers – The Beverly Hills Burglary”
Erick Fefferman, Roger Nygard

“Succession – With Open Eyes”
Ken Eluto, ACE

“The White Lotus – Arrivederci”
John M. Valerio, ACE

“White House Plumbers – True Believers”
Grady Cooper, Jon Merchen

Outstanding Editing – Documentary
Sponsored by Blackmagic Design

“100 Foot Wave – Lost at Sea”
Alex Keipper, Alex Bayer

“A Tree of Life: The Pittsburgh Synagogue Shooting”
Eric Schuman

“Being Mary Tyler Moore”
Mariah Rehmet

“Branson – Episode 2, Atlantic”
Paul Trewartha

“Moonage Daydream”
Brett Morgen

Outstanding Sound – Theatrical Feature 

Ai-Ling Lee, Kevin O’Connell, Dan Kenyon // Warner Bros. Post Production Services

“Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio”
Scott Gershin, Chris Richardson, Masanobu ‘Tomi’ Tomita, Andrew Vernon, Dan Gamache // Sound Lab a Keywords Studio

“Creed III”
Aaron Glascock, Tom Ozanich, Walter Spencer, Curt Schulkey // Warner Bros. Post Production Services

“John Wick: Chapter 4”
Mark Stoeckinger, Andy Koyama, Casey Genton, Alan Rankin, Manfred Banach // Formosa Group

“Puss in Boots: The Last Wish”
Jason W. Jennings, Julian Slater, Greg P. Russell, Paul Pirola, Ken McGill, Mia Stewart // Warner Bros. Post Production Services

Outstanding Sound – Episode or Non-Theatrical Feature

“Star Trek: Picard – The Last Generation”
Matthew E. Taylor, Michael Schapiro, Todd Grace, Ed Carr III, Ian Shedd // Warner Bros. Post Production Services

“The Last of Us – Infected”
Michael Benavente, Marc Fishman, Kevin Roache, Chris Terhune, Chris Battaglia // Formosa Group

“Barry – it takes a psycho”
Sean Heissinger, Matthew E. Taylor, John Creed, Rickley Dumm // Warner Bros. Post Production Services
Elmo Ponsdomenech, Teddy Salas // Sony Pictures Entertainment

“Wednesday – A Murder of Woes”
Mike Baskerville, Jamie Sulek, John Loranger, Alastair Gray, Dan Sexton // Company 3

“Star Trek: Strange New Worlds – Hegemony”
Matthew E. Taylor, Michael Schapiro, Todd Grace, Ed Carr III, Sean Heissinger // Warner Bros. Post Production Services

Outstanding Sound – Documentary

“32 Sounds”
Mark Mangini, Robert Kellough, Eliza Paley, Joanna Fang, Blake Collins // Formosa Group

“A Tree of Life: The Pittsburgh Synagogue Shooting”
Daniel Timmons // Harbor Sound

“Good Night Oppy”
Mark Mangini, Dave Whitehead, Tim Walston, Dave Bach, Angela Claverie // Formosa Group

“If These Walls Could Sing”
George Foulgham, Philip Moroz, Alex Gibson, Tom Verstappen, Miles Sullivan // George Foulgham Soundscapes Ltd.

“Moonage Daydream”
Nina Hartstone, David Giammarco, John Warhurst, Paul Massey // Public Road Productions

Outstanding Visual Effects – Live Action Feature

“Avatar: The Way of Water”
Christopher Egden, Nick Epstein, Wayne Stables, Pavani Rao Boddapati, Sergei Nevshupov // Wētā FX

“Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio”
Aaron Weintraub, Jeffrey Schaper, Cameron Carson, Emma Gorbey, Warren Lawtey // MPC

“Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3”
Guy Williams, Daniel Macarin, Mike Cozens, Mark Smith, Marvyn Young // Wētā FX

“Avatar: The Way of Water”
David Vickery, Lee Briggs, Jan Maroske, Steve Ellis, Miguel Perez-Senent // Industrial Light & Magic

“Transformers: Rise of the Beasts”
Matt Aitken, Mike Perry, Aaron Cowan, Kevin Estey, Jong Jin Choi // Wētā FX

Outstanding Visual Effects – Live Action Episode or Series Season

“Andor – Season One”
Mohen Leo, Scott Pritchard // Industrial Light & Magic
TJ Falls // Lucasfilm
Joseph Kasparian // Hybride
Jelmer Boskma // Scanline

“House of the Dragon – The Heirs of the Dragon”
Angus Bickerton, Nikeah Forde, Mike Bell // MPC
Sven Martin, Mark Spindler // Pixomondo

“The Last of Us – Season One”
Simon Jung, Aaron Cowan, David Hampton, Dennis Yoo, Ben Roberts // Wētā FX

“The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power – Season One”
Ron Ames, Jason Smith, Jesse Kobayashi, Ryan Tudhope, Sam Scott // Amazon Studios

“The Mandalorian – Season Three”
Grady Cofer, Abbigail Keller, Paul Kavanagh, Delio Tramontozzi // Industrial Light & Magic
Bobo Skipper // Important Looking Pirates

Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects – Episode or Series Season

“Barry – Season Four”
Justin Ball, Laura Hill, Andrew Kalicki, David Lopez, Manuel Guizar // Crafty Apes

“Citadel – Secrets in Night Need Early Rains”
Aladino Debert, Greg Teegarden, James Reid, Mathew Rotman, Viv Jim // Digital Domain

“Interview with the Vampire – Is My Very Nature That of a Devil”
Ted Rae, Tavis Larkham, Matthew Harris, Hugo Leveille, J.V. Pike // FuseFX

“The Night Agent – Season One”
Grant Miller, Hallana Barbosa, Pierceon Bellemare, Mariia Osanova, Ben Stommes // Ingenuity Studios

“The Righteous Gemstones – Season Three”
Bruce Branit, Valeri Pfahning // Rough House
Fred Ruff // Refuge VFX
Ed Bruce // Screen Scene Studios
David Lebensfeld // Ingenuity Studios

Outstanding Achievement in Restoration

Warner Bros.


Warner Bros.

“The Godfather”
Paramount Pictures

“Winds of Chance”
First National Pictures and Christopher Gray Post Production

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