By Lanford Beard
Updated January 11, 2012 at 10:11 PM EST

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced today that it will present Douglas Trumbull with the Gordon E. Sawyer Award for his body of work and technical innovation in cinematic visual effects. Before spearheading the stunning, 20-minute opening act to 2011’s Tree of Life, Trumbull’s prestigious career spanned groundbreaking work films on films including 2001: A Space Odyssey, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, and Blade Runner. It’s the second Oscar for Trumbull, who shared a Scientific and Engineering Award with three others in 1993 when he developed the first modern 65mm camera in 25 years. He has been a technical vanguard in the field, securing more than a dozen patents in film technology and founding Future General Corporation, a breeding ground for filmmakers and visual effects artists. The presentation will occur at Feb. 11th’s Scientific and Technical Awards.

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