Stan Winston Trivia | Source:

One of the founders of visual effects companies Digital Domain, Stan Winston Digital and Stan Winston studios.

Only the second special effects artist to be honored with a star on Hollywood's Walk of Stars.

He studied painting and sculpture at the University of Virginia.

He moved to Hollywood in 1968. At first he wanted to be an actor, but no jobs came his way and the following year he became an apprentice in the Makeup Department at Walt Disney Studios.

He has become known primarily as a "creature creator." His first such assignment was for the TV movie Gargoyles (1972) (TV).

Father of actor Matt Winston.

Made a living as a stand-up comedian before moving into make-up effects.

Helped out on some Special Effects scenes in The Thing (1982) when Rob Bottin was suffering from exhaustion at the time due to his immensely heavy workload.

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Awards | Source:

Awards Stan Winston Has Won:

1985 Saturn Award - Best Make-Up
The Terminator

1987: For Aliens
Oscar - Best Visual Effects
Saturn Award - Best Special Effects
BAFTA Film Award - Best Special Effects

1998 Sitges Award - Best Special Effects
Small Soldiers

1992: For Terminator 2: Judgment Day
Oscar - Best Visual Effects
Also: Best Make-Up
Saturn Award - Best Special Effects
BAFTA Film Award - Best Special Effects

1993 Saturn Award - Best Make-Up
Batman Returns

1994: For Jurassic Park
Oscar - Best Visual Effects
Saturn Award - Best Special Effects
BAFTA Film Award - Best Special Effects

2002 Saturn Award - Best Special Effects
Artificial Intelligence: AI

Stan has also received The Las Vegas Film Critics Society 2004 Lifetime Achievement Award, The 2005 Satellite Nicola Tesla Award, A Star on the Motion Picture Walk of Fame in 2001, and has been nominated for at least 25 other awards.

Filmography Highlights | Source:

Stan made his mark on over a 100 films in a variety of capacities from Special Effects to Producer and even Director.
Below is a highlight of some of his cinema accomplishments.

Constantine (2005)
Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines (2003)
Artificial Intelligence: AI (2001)
Pearl Harbor (2001)
The Island of Dr. Moreau (1996)
Interview with the Vampire (1994)
Batman Returns (1992)
Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991)
Edward Scissorhands (1990)
Friday the 13th Part III (1982)
The Thing (1982)
The Hand (1981)
The Entity (1981)
The Wiz (1978)
Roots (1977) TV mini-series

Special Effects:
Terminator Salvation (2009)
The Incredible Hulk (2008)
Iron Man (2008)
Constantine (2005)
Doom (2005)
Big Fish (2003)
Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines (2003)
Darkness Falls (2003)
Jurassic Park III (2001)
Artificial Intelligence: AI (2001)
Galaxy Quest (1999)
End of Days (1999)
Inspector Gadget (1999)
Lake Placid (1999)
Instinct (1999)
Small Soldiers (1998)
The Relic (1997)
Congo (1995)
Predator 2 (1990)
Leviathan (1989)
The Monster Squad (1987)
Predator (1987)
Aliens (1986)
Invaders from Mars (1986)

Speed Demon (2008)
The Deaths of Ian Stone (2007)
Wrong Turn (2003)
Teenage Caveman (2002)
Mermaid Chronicles Part 1 (2001)
The Day the World Ended (2001)
How to Make a Monster (2001)
Earth vs. the Spider (2001)

Ghosts (1997)
T2 3-D: Battle Across Time (1996)
A Gnome Named Gnorm (1990)
Pumpkinhead (1988)

Stan Winston Websites

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Special-effects maestro Stan Winston dies at 62
By Derrik J. Lang | Source:

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Stan Winston, the Oscar-winning special-effects maestro responsible for bringing the dinosaurs of "Jurassic Park" and other iconic movie creatures to life, has died. He was 62.

Winston died at his home in Malibu surrounded by family on Sunday evening after a seven-year struggle with multiple myeloma, according to a representative from Stan Winston Studio.

Working with such directors as Steven Spielberg, James Cameron and Tim Burton in a career spanning four decades, Winston created some of the most memorable visual effects in cinematic history.

He helped bring the dinosaurs from "Jurassic Park," the extraterrestrials from "Aliens, the robots from "Terminator" and even "Edward Scissorhands" to the big screen, and was a pioneer in merging real-world effects with computer imaging. "The entertainment industry has lost a genius, and I lost one of my best friends with the death Sunday night of Stan Winston," Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said in a statement. "Stan's work and four Oscars speak for themselves and will live on forever. What will live forever in my heart is the way that Stan loved everyone and treated each of his friends like they were family."

Winston won visual effects Oscars for 1986's "Aliens," 1992's "Terminator 2: Judgment Day" and 1993's "Jurassic Park." He also won a makeup Oscar for 1992's "Batman Returns." Winston was nominated for his work on "Heartbeeps," "Predator," "Edward Scissorhands," "Batman Returns," "The Lost World: Jurassic Park" and "A.I." He last worked with director Jon Favreau on "Iron Man." "He was experienced and helped guide me while never losing his childlike enthusiasm," Favreau said in a statement. "He was the king of integrating practical effects with CGI, never losing his relevance in an ever changing industry. I am proud to have worked with him and we were looking forward to future collaborations.

I knew that he was struggling, but I had no idea that he would be gone so soon. Hollywood has lost a shining star." At the time of his death, Winston was in the process of transforming his physical makeup and effects studio into the new Winston Effects Group with a team of senior effects supervisors. Winton's most recent projects included "Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins," "G.I. Joe," "Shutter Island" and Cameron's "Avatar." "He ran at full throttle, in both work and play, and was a man of kindness, wisdom and great humor," Cameron said in an e-mail to The Associated Press.

Words on Stan Winston From the Cinema Industry

JAMES CAMERON: Stan was a great man. I'm proud to have been his friend, and his collaborator on what for both of us, was some of our best work.

We met in pre-production on Terminator in 1983, and quickly sized each other up as the kind of crazy son of a bitch that you wanted for a friend. We've stayed friends for over a quarter of a century, and would have been for much longer if he had not been cut down.

We've lost a great artist, a man who made a contribution to the cinema of the fantastic that will resound for a long long time. I don't need to list the indelible characters he and his team of artists brought to the screen. Readers of your site know them.

James Cameron

We all know Stan's work, the genius of his designs. But not even the fans necessarily know how great he was as a man. I mean a real man --- a man who knows that even though your artistic passion can rule your life, you still make time for your family and your friends. He was a good father, and he raised two great kids. His wife of 37 years, Karen, was with him in the beginning, helping him make plaster molds in their garage for low budget gigs on TV movies, and she was with him at the end.

He was a man of incredible humor. When I think of him I see him smiling, usually a goofy grin as he twists his glasses askew on his nose doing a Jerry Lewis impression. Never afraid to play the clown, because he knew his colleagues respected him. He lived life full throttle, in work and play. Like me he loved fast cars, and whenever one of us would get a new toy, the other had to drive it (a practice which was strained for few years after I skidded his brand new Porsche turbo, just off the boat from Stuttgart, into his garage and stopped a half inch from the back wall).

We even went to formula racing school together. For the last ten years or so we rode motorcycles on Sundays with Arnold Schwarzenegger and some other friends, not every week but as many Sundays as we could. There was a comradeship that comes from starting out together, and never betraying the respect and trust of that friendship over the years, but always being there for each other, that the three of us have shared.

Stan and I founded Digital Domain together, and our friendship was never strained by being business partners. He always demonstrated incredible wisdom in business, because he knew people, and especially creative people. He inspired artists to pull together and work as a team, which is like herding cats, but it was perhaps his greatest talent. To lead by inspiration.

JON FAVREAU: He was a giant. I was blessed to have known him. I worked with him on both Zathura and Iron Man. He was experienced and helped guide me while never losing his childlike enthusiasm. He was the king of integrating practical effects with CGI, never losing his relevance in an ever changing industry.

I am proud to have worked with him and we were looking forward to future collaborations. I knew that he was struggling, but I had no idea that he would be gone so soon. Hollywood has lost a shining star.

Jon Favreau

JONATHAN LIEBESMAN: I guess I would just say that on my first film when I was a 25 year old first time director, Stan Winston would call me "boss". That nod of support fuelled me through any tough times on the movie. Whenever I'd go to his shop to visit the guys working on my film, Stan would always walk up to me and shake my hand to greet me with a "you like what you see, boss?".

His attitude was so empowering to me. I was amazed that even if you weren't Cameron or Spielberg, a legend like Stan would treat you with the same respect he'd give those guys. They say to be careful when you meet someone you idolize because your idol always disappoint you. Not this time. Stan supported me and I will always be grateful to him and wish I could've worked with him one last time.

Jonathan Liebesman

FRANK DARABONT: I'm still reeling from the news. Losing Stan is a real blow for me, as I'm sure it is for a lot of people who loved his work. He was clearly a genius in his field. He and I talked about working together for years, but we never found the project to make it happen.

Stan was one of those people it was impossible not to like. I met him around the time of Eraser. Back then Schwarzenegger was always throwing these dinners at his restaurant in Santa Monica—lots of food, wine, and cigars. And because Stan and I were fans of each other’s work, we’d often wind up sitting together.

We’d trade stories, talk movies, and laugh our asses off. Stan was a fantastic dinner companion, a real raconteur, and one of the most affable guys you'd ever meet. He was brimming with enthusiasm that was genuine. As revered an industry figure as he was, he was still basically the kid who loved movies and broke into the business for the magic of it, and he never let go of that attitude.

Frank Darabont

One of the blessings of being in movies is when you meet icons whose work you deeply admire and they turn out to be fantastic people. They’re the ones you’re honored to encounter along the way, the people who are kind and gracious and inspiring in addition to being superbly talented. They exhibit genuine humanity and touch your heart in various ways, and you foolishly figure they’ll always be around to get to know better as the years go on.

But then they are taken far too soon, and you’re left with the deep and lasting regret of not having gotten to know them nearly as well as you’d wanted or expected to. I’ve met and lost a number of extraordinary people who fall into this category, among them Roddy McDowell, John Frankenheimer, Sidney Pollack, Dave Stevens, and John Alvin. Stan Winston now sadly joins my list. The best way to sum up Stan is to share my best memory of him.

I’ll never forget how excited and honored we both felt the day we participated in presenting a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame to our mutual childhood hero, Ray Harryhausen. Stan and I spent the afternoon on a “pinch-me-because-I-must-be-dreaming” high. We kept pulling each other aside and muttering things like: “Wow, can you believe we’re here? Can you believe we get to do this? Isn’t this the coolest thing ever?” In short, we spent the day geeking out like a couple of giddy kids. Whenever I think of Stan, I’ll think of his joy and his childlike enthusiasm that day.

JOE DANTE: Although Stan was prematurely gray, he always exuded so much youthful enthusiasm that he never seemed much older than 20, making today's sad news all the harder to accept. Like many of us who began as monster kids, he was eternally excited to be part of the movie business, even after becoming one of the major names in his field.

I met Stan at Amblin when he was doing GOONIES, where he was providing a giant octopus that eventually got cut from the movie, and I admired his direction of PUMPKINHEAD, but we didn't really get the chance to work together until SMALL SOLDIERS, for which his studio provided most of the designs for the various living toys.

The level of detail that went into the creation of these figures and their on-set animation was prodigious, and subject to lots of trial and error. How much was to be accomplished on-set and how much would be ceded to ILM's CGI artists was in constant flux.

In the end the scale tilted more toward ILM than any of us had expected, but Stan and his guys were totally on board with whatever was best for the picture. But that was Stan's ethos. Whatever worked and made everybody look good. One less artist and a major loss for all of us. Rest in peace, Stan, with the knowledge you made a difference in the world you loved best.

Joe Dante

RICK BAKER: Such sad news. I arrive in England after flying all of Sunday night, get to my hotel, go to bed, get up and go to work in the morning and find out that Stan Winston is gone. I can't tell you how sad this makes me.

I just spoke with him a couple of weeks ago. I called to tell him how beautiful I thought his Iron Man was. I heard rumors that he was ill and spoke to him about that. He confirmed the fact that he had cancer but said, "Hey, I am still above ground".

We spoke about when I finished my work on in England about getting together and talking about the good old days. Stan was bigger than life. The film industry is not going to be the same without Stan. Stan took make-up effects out of the garage and made it a respectable business.

Stan was the first to make a nice clean beautiful shop for crew to work in. He treated his crew well, with respect and love. My heart goes out to his family and his crew. I am sorry for their loss, his passing is a loss to us all. It is hard to imagine the make-up effects industry without Stan. His presence will surely be missed. I feel like it is the end of an era.

Rick Baker

JOHN ROSENGRANT: It's 3am here in New Mexico and I'm supervising Terminator 4 Salvation for Stan and just finished one of the toughest days in my life. It was extra tough not only that I lost my mentor, who taught me this business and great lessons in life, but we had to perform tonight.

The old show biz saying" the show must go on" came true and the team and I had to make Stan bring our characters to life, and keep it all together. I have been blessed to have worked for Stan for the last 25 years ,my first feature with Stan being the first Terminator.

It has been an unbelievable opportunity, an incredible ride. It's a ride, we the team will continue, just as he wanted.Stan never lost his love for this business, always wanted to break that new ground ,give the audience what they had never seen before, and to the highest artistic standards.

As a person Stan was caring and generous. It breaks my heart that he is gone. The out pouring from the fans is very touching.... you all obviously loved him as much as we all did at Stan Winston Studio.We'll miss you Stan.

John Rosengrant

FRED DEKKER: Imagine a world where you have no visual knowledge of the Terminator endoskeleton. What if you never saw the Alien Queen from Aliens? Take the T-Rex from Jurassic Park, and remove it from your memory banks.

Johnny Depp as Edward Scissorhands? Gone. Not there. What kind of weird world would that be? My point is, this isn’t just fanboy stuff -- these are some of the most indelible, iconographic images in the history of motion pictures.

But putting that aside (and my belief that A.I. is one of the great achievements in all of genre cinema), my personal favorite Stan story was one night when we were shooting THE MONSTER SQUAD on the Warners backlot.

In the movie, there’s a tiny, throwaway shot that occurs right after Frankenstein's monster wallops Dracula and sends him flying onto a pointed metal cross. Except there was no walloping… and no "flying” either.

Fred Dekker

It was all in the editing. There was a shot of Frank throwing a backhand -- then we see Drac "impaled". What I had storyboarded to sell it was a small, blink-if-you-miss-it, insert of the body actually hitting the cross. Any other director would have given it to the second unit. But I was a newbie, and I had the entire first unit -- a full union crew standing by at 4:00 a.m. while Stan and I stood on a ladder with a Dracula dummy, literally THROWING it onto the cross with the camera three feet away.

A virtuoso who worked with the biggest directors, created the biggest FX creatures, and worked on the biggest, most groundbreaking effects movies of all time. But here’s what I remember: me and Stan, at four in the morning, throwing a dummy onto a spike just like when I was 12 years old in my backyard making 8mm movies with my friends. I’m sure the crew thought we were crazy. But man, the memory was worth it. There's always been a part of me that stays a little kid at heart. And that night, I saw that part of him, too. He was having a ball – even without gazillion dollar robots.

Stan Winston Biography | Source:

A leading figure in modern movie effects, Stan Winston describes himself as a character designer rather than a makeup effects technician. His Stan Winston Studio has crafted some of modern cinema's most fantastic figures.

He collaborated with director James Cameron on the fearsome monster effects of "Aliens" (1986) and on both "The Terminator" (1984) and its lavish 1991 sequel "Terminator 2: Judgment Day". In a similar vein, he designed the alien hunter in "Predator" (1987) and "Predator 2" (1990).

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Winston and filmmaker Tim Burton were responsible for Johnny Depp's soulful-eyed and sharp-fingered oddball looks in "Edward Scissorhands" (1990) and Danny DeVito's grotesque Penguin makeup in "Batman Returns" (1992). Winston employs a crack team of painters, sculptors, and other artists and craftsmen which he has favorably compared to the masters of the Renaissance. A less controversial comparison could be drawn to the Disney Studio of the classic era.

He also owes a debt to Ray Harryhausen, that low-tech effects wizard of the 1950s and 60s, who also made movie creatures that had to convince visually as well as emotionally. More than a talented techie, Winston has been a major player on many of his projects. Realizing that much of the future of special effects will involve computers, he joined forces with Cameron and Scott Ross to establish Digital Domain, already the second largest computer effects company after Industrial Light and Magic.

Winston has also directed two features of his own, "Pumpkinhead" (1988) and "The Adventures of a Gnome Named Gnorm" (1993). The former, for which he also received story credit, was an above-average tale of supernatural revenge gone horribly awry, while the latter was a comedic fantasy adventure that went straight to video. Winston initially wanted to be an actor and he studied drama and fine arts at the University of Virginia. He then moved to California and won acceptance to the Disney Studio's highly competitive apprenticeship program in theatrical makeup and special effects.

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