Michael Owens, who now lives in Coeur d'Alene, is an Oscar nominee for Best Achievement in Visual Effects for his work on the movie "Hereafter."
Owens is the real deal: He was a longtime visual effects supervisor for George Lucas's Industrial Light and Magic. He got his start as a camera assistant on "ET: The Extra-Terrestrial" and as a visual effects cameraman on films such as "Star Wars VI, Return of the Jedi" and "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom."
Then he went on to be visual effects supervisor on dozens of big movies, including "The Witches of Eastwick," "The Doors," "Van Helsing," "Meet Joe Black," "Gangs of New York," "Flags of Our Fathers," "Letters from Iwo Jima," "Gran Torino," and "Invictus."
"Hereafter" is the Matt Damon movie directed Clint Eastwood, a director Owens evidently has a certain affinity with, since he has worked with Eastwood so many times.
Owens shares the nomination with others on the "Hereafter" special effects team, Bryan Gill, Stephen Trojansky and Joe Farrell.
Owens likes to keep a low profile in CDA. He declined our request for an interview, which I find, in a way, refreshing. He's apparently a Hollywood type who is not an attention-hog.
But I wanted to let people in CDA, Spokane and vicinity know that we can root for a local name on Oscar night, Feb. 27.