The Motion Picture Sound Editors said today that Gwendolyn Yates Whittle will receive its 2023 MPSE Career Achievement Award during the group’s 70th annual Golden Reel Awards in February.
Supervising sound editor Whittle is a two-time Oscar nominee for Avatar and Tron: Legacy and has won six Golden Reels on 20 career nominations spanning 1998-2022. She also scored an Emmy nom for WandaVision last year.
“An extraordinarily gifted sound artist, Gwen has lent her talents to an amazing diversity of films and television shows,” MPSE President Mark Lanza said. “She has been a true pioneer since her earliest days in the industry and has served as a mentor, role model, and inspiration to countless aspiring sound editors. The MPSE takes great pride in presenting her with our annual Career Achievement Award.”
Based at Skywalker Sound in Northern California for more than 30 years, Whittle has worked on well more than 120 films — from small independents to blockbusters including Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace, Iron Man, Cloverfield and Jurassic World. Starting as a PA in the art department on the Sundance film Smooth Talk, she later made the leap to sound on The Unbearable Lightness of Being, specializing in production sound and ADR editing. She has devoted much of 2022 to final mixing on Avatar 2: The Way of Water in Wellington, New Zealand.
She also appeared in the documentary Making Waves: The Art of Cinematic Sound.
“This award reminds me of how lucky and grateful I am to have had the opportunities I’ve had,” said Whittle. “I have huge support from my family and my colleagues that allows me to thrive in a very competitive industry, still be in the thick of it, and work with the most creative people from all over the planet. Huge thanks to all the people who have mentored, supported and encouraged me through the last 30-plus years. I am eager to see where this takes me next.”
The MPSE Career Achievement Award recognizes sound artists who have distinguished themselves by meritorious works as an individual and fellow contributor to the art of sound for feature film, TV and gaming and for setting an example of excellence for others.