Ken Ralston

Special effects supervisor, Director, Director of photography
Academy Award-winner Ken Ralston was a leading pioneer in the specialized field of visual effects, creating some of cinema's most breathtaking moments for acclaimed filmmakers like George Lucas and Robert Zemeckis ... Read more »
Born: 11/30/1953

Filmography

Visual Effects & Animation (28)

Alice Through the Looking Glass 2016 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

Men in Black 3 2012 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

Alice in Wonderland 2010 (Movie)

Senior Visual Effects Supervisor(Sony Pictures Imageworks Inc) (Visual Effects Supervisor)

Beowulf 2007 (Movie)

Visual Effects Design Consultant (Visual Effects Designer)

The Polar Express 2004 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

Men in Black II 2002 (Movie)

(Sony Pictures Imageworks) (Visual Effects Supervisor)

America's Sweethearts 2001 (Movie)

Visual Effects Consultant (Visual Effects)

Cast Away 2000 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

Contact 1997 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

Michael 1996 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

Phenomenon 1996 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

Jumanji 1995 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

The American President 1995 (Movie)

visual effects supersivor(Industrial Light & Magic) (Visual Effects)

You, Murderer 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)

Visual Effects Supervisor

Forrest Gump 1994 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

Death Becomes Her 1992 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

The Rocketeer 1991 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

Akira Kurosawa's Dreams 1990 (Movie)

(ILM) (Visual Effects Supervisor)

Back to the Future III 1990 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

Back to the Future II 1989 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

Who Framed Roger Rabbit 1988 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

Star Trek IV 1986 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

The Golden Child 1986 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

Cocoon 1985 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

Star Trek III 1984 (Movie)

(Visual Effects Supervisor)

Return of the Jedi 1983 (Movie)

(Visual Effects)

Star Trek II: the Wrath of Khan 1982 (Movie)

special visual effects supervisor (Visual Effects Supervisor)

Monsterpocalypse (Movie)

(Character Design)
Actor (4)

When Star Wars Ruled the World 2004 - 2005 (TV Show)

Actor

The Inside Reel: Digital Filmmaking 2001 - 2002 (TV Show)

Actor

A Night of Movie Magic 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)

Actor
Director (2)

Death Becomes Her 1992 (Movie)

2nd unit director (Director)

The Rocketeer 1991 (Movie)

2nd unit director (Director)
Camera, Film, & Tape (1)

The Empire Strikes Back 1980 (Movie)

optical effects photography (Photography)
Executive (1)

Dragonslayer 1980 (Movie)

dragon supervisor (Supervisor)
Other (1)

The Mask 1994 (Movie)

visual effects consultant (Consultant)

Biography

Academy Award-winner Ken Ralston was a leading pioneer in the specialized field of visual effects, creating some of cinema's most breathtaking moments for acclaimed filmmakers like George Lucas and Robert Zemeckis. Beginning as a founding member of Lucasfilm's effects division Industrial Light & Magic, Ralston learned his craft on Lucas' "Star Wars" (1977) before taking on a supervisory role for "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan" (1982) and earning a Special Achievement Oscar for his work on the third "Star Wars installment, "Return of the Jedi" (1983). He won the first of several Academy Awards for the movie magic he and his team cooked up for Ron Howard's "Cocoon" (1985) and another with Zemeckis on "Who Framed Roger Rabbit?" (1988). After more Oscar-winning collaborations with Zemeckis on "Death Becomes Her" (1992) and "Forrest Gump" (1994), Ralston eventually left his home at ILM for an upper-management position with Sony Pictures Imageworks, where he orchestrated more visual magic for such features as "Cast Away" (2000) and "Men in Black II" (2002), as well as Zemeckis' technologically ground breaking fantasy "Beowulf" (2007). Three years later, he also helped director Tim Burton score one of his biggest box offices successes, providing spectacular visual effects for "Alice in Wonderland" (2010). Whether looking to explore the far reaches of the universe or create an entirely fantastical world of make believe, filmmakers looked to Ralston time and again to bring their visions to vibrant life.

Milestones

1999

Signed to make feature directorial debut with "Jumanji 2"; left project in February 2000 over "creative differences"

1995

Left Industrial Light and Magic to assume presidency of Sony Pictures Imageworks

1982

First credit as special visual effects supervisor, on "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan"

1980

First film credit, as optical effects photographer on "The Empire Strikes Back"

Made 8mm forty minute audition film

Hired by Cascade Productions; worked under Phil Kellison building props and as stop-motion photographer for commercials

Joined Industrial Light & Magic as camera assistant on "Star Wars"

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