Mark Scott Spatny 

Visual Effects Supervisor and Photographer

Mark's Blog

New judging procedure for 2016 SVE Emmys

Posted on June 7, 2016 at 7:35 PM

For those of you who haven't read the Emmy Awards rule book this year, we've made a significant change to the way the Special Visual Effects categories are judged.


As visual effects have started to play a much more significant role in television productions over the past few years, we've seen the number of entries in this category rise from about 35-40 per year to over 70 this year. With each entry running up to 7 minutes, it was clear that some of our membership might not have the time to view all of those entries during the voting period. Our Peer Group Executive Committee grew concerned that there might be a tendency to vote for familiar names, rather than view all of the entries for their relative merit.


With that in mind, we decided to adopt a methodology similar to the way the Visual Effects Oscars are voted on. Our PGEC, a team of 12 experts in the field who have a combined 37 Emmy nominations and 12 wins, viewed all the entries, and held a first round of voting. These members represent all areas of the field. Supervisors, producers, artists, and practical special effects coordinators. Using their expertise, they voted for the top 15 entries in each category that will be presented to the entire membership of the Special Visual Effects peer group. This same team took special care to evaluate which category each show was entered in (effects driven or supporting), to make sure that shows competed against other shows that had similar time and resources to create their effects.


When nomination voting opens up to the entire peer group later this month, members will be presented with 30 of the most amazing episodes of visual effects television ever created. Some of you will be shocked at how well we compete with our brothers and sisters creating motion picture effects. Some of the work is so ground breaking, I nearly had to pick my jaw up off the floor after viewing it. And of course, like last year, ALL our members in the peer group, regardless of location, will be able to vote online. Our members in Toronto, Vancouver, Atlanta, New York, Los Angeles, the UK, and elsewhere, will all have an equal voice in the competition.


This new procedure, we feel, will make it faster and easier for the general membership to view the best material in competition. And it will help prevent established shows from being nominated simply for "name recognition" over newer shows that might be doing more to push the boundaries of television effects production.


Since this is a new procedure for our peer group, we of course welcome any feedback you might have after the voting closes. We strive to improve things for our members every year, and take your suggestions very seriously.


Enjoy voting for the Emmys this year. You are going to be blown away.



Categories: Visual Effects, Television Academy

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