It is with great sadness that we report the passing of longtime DCS member Douglas Trumbull, whose credits include sci-fi classics such as 2001: A Space Odyssey, Close Encounters of the Third Kind and Blade Runner. He died on Monday, January 7, 2022 at the age of 79 as a result of complications from mesothelioma.
Trumbull earned Oscar nominations for his VFX work on Close Encounters and Blade Runner, as well as Star Trek: The Motion Picture. He also oversaw the visual effects for The Andromeda Strain and Silent Running, which he directed. He was awarded an honorary Oscar in 1993 for conceiving the CP-65 Showscan Camera System for the 65mm motion-picture camera and received the Academy’s Gordon E. Sawyer Award for his technical contributions to the industry as well as the President’s Award from the American Society of Cinematographers in 1996, Georges Méliès Award from the Visual Effects Society in 2012 and was later named a VES Fellow.
Trumbull took a break from the movie business following the making of 1981’s Brainstorm, which proved to be Natalie Wood‘s final film after the actress died in the middle of production. In recent years he resided in Massachusetts where he continued to innovate. Doug was not only a master craftsman, and a gifted artist, but also a good friend and a kind man, who was very generous with his knowledge and willing to share advice or even just a great tale from his storied career in the industry. He was also an important contributor to DCS, participating in our productions, such as this interview for the Digital Cinema Show episode on Visual Effects: https://vimeo.com/675248695