And the winner is...
Damon Varriale, with 'Clash of the Titans':
The judges felt that this entry had true artistic merit and achieved a transcendant quality, rendering Iron Man with a god-like quality and making imaginative use of the avatar in order to portray his counterpart. They felt that, despite being a still image, it managed to be genuinely cinematic, and that it captured the majestic feeling of what it would be to be a super-hero, putting the 'art' in 'fan art'.
Picture: Damon Varriale, winner of the Iron Man fan art contest. Picture by Annie Ok.
Coming in EXTREMELY close behind was our runner-up and winner of L$25,000, 'The Fall', a machinima short directed by Shatner Gumbo:
The judges saw this as an entertaining and technically savvy alternative take on Iron Man, making imaginative use of the character of Tony Stark and the avatar itself. They all complimented Gumbo on the work he and his team had put into creating a highly accomplished example of Second Life machinima.
Pictured (left to right): Runner-up Shatner Gumbo, Silverscreen General Manager Dannyboy Lightfoot and contest winner Damon Varriale. Picture by Annie Ok.
The event itself was as fun and frantic as usual. In true Second Life style, grid-wide problems were reported bang on 10.00am SLT, just as the event was due to begin, and we only achieved a full compliment of finalists seconds before I took to the stage to make the announcement at around 10.30am.
It drew a small but distinguished audience, comprising principally of our finalists, an assortment of friends, fans and well-wishers, creator of the Iron Man avatar Jonny Dusk, members of the judging panel including virtual world evangelist and multimedia artist Xantherus Halberd (AKA Annie Ok), SL 'video tutorian' and watermelon enthusiast Torley Olmstead (AKA Torley) and V3 Group CEO and content creator Liam Kanno. Unfortunately two of our judges, Infromation Week exec. editor Mitch Wagner and Iron Man writer Matt Fraction couldn't make it along, but took the time to vote in advance nonetheless, for which we're grateful.
Pictured (left to right): Torley Olmstead, Ravenelle Zugzwang, Iam Yumako, Sadakos Frog, Dannyboy Lightfoot, Roosevelt Dagger, HazelUES GossipGirl, Shatner Gumbo and Zinc Karas. Picture by Torley.
Pictured (left to right): Aemilia Case and Jonny Dusk. Picture by Annie Ok.
I was careful to thank everybody involved, insofar as - true to the user-generated spirit of Second Life - this contest was made by the enthusiasm of the entrants, the contribution of the content creators we commissioned and the, er, judgement of the judges. This is particularly true of Annie Ok, who went way beyond the call of duty on this one, and to whom I'm personally very grateful.
Everybody present seemed to agree that it was to Paramount's credit that they had commissioned this initative, and that their commitment to engaging the Second Life community with this type of creative call-to-action was commendable. For my part I recognise that the business of movie marketing rarely affords the opportunity for long-sightedness, but that aspects of this initiative definitely sign-post the way to the marketing campaign of the future.