The inaugural Marty & Leah Sklar Creative Visionary Award will be presented to Kevin Feige, Producer and President of Marvel Studios in recognition of his creative vision and role in Marvel’s critical and box-office success. This first-ever award honors Feige’s impactful contribution of bringing layered stories, visually compelling effects, and relatable heroes together to create unique film experiences for audiences.
“The Ryman Arts Board established the Marty & Leah Sklar Creative Visionary Award to honor Marty’s memory and to celebrate the legacy of two amazing founders of our organization. We are thrilled that the first recipient of the award, Kevin Feige, embodies the aspiration of the award so completely. Kevin has reimagined an entire universe of storytelling and introduced us to exciting new worlds through his creative leadership and vision,” stated Phil Hettema, Ryman Arts Board President and President and Creative Executive of The Hettema Group.
The Marty & Leah Sklar Creative Visionary Award will be presented at the annual Ryman Arts event, this year being held at the Majestic Downtown in Los Angeles on Wednesday, November 7, 2018. The evening kicks off with a VIP reception including a dynamic panel discussion on bringing the world of Wakanda to life and the creation of Black Panther featuring Writer Joe Robert Cole and Director of Photography Rachel Morrison. The exclusive VIP reception will be followed by general admission and award program with remarks by Kevin Feige and other special guests.
The MARTY AND LEAH SKLAR CREATIVE VISIONARY AWARD is presented annually to an individual or singular creative vision and leadership who has made a distinctive contribution to the creative community: illuminating, inspiring and expanding the impact, relevance and reach of the arts through their work and creative vision. It is named for two visionaries who were co-founders of Ryman Arts. Leah Sklar has been active in the community and educational initiatives throughout her life, including a critical role in the development of Ryman’s mission and program. Marty Sklar was the legendary vice chairman and principal creative executive of Walt Disney Imagineering (WDI), leading the creation of the Disney theme parks around the world.
RYMAN ARTS provides intensive studio art instruction along with college and career guidance to a diverse community of promising high school youth —all at no cost to the students. Almost all graduates go to college, many go on to work in the creative industries, and all are poised for personal success. A nationally recognized non-profit organization, Ryman Arts was founded in 1990 to honor the legacy of legendary Disney artist Herbert D. Ryman. It has served over 6,000 teens from 150 communities across Southern California in its core program, engaged over 20,000 inner-city students through outreach, and is committed to reaching students with the greatest need to ensure all young artists reach their full potential. KEVIN FEIGE, producer and president of Marvel Studios, is a hands-on producer and oversees Marvel Studios’ feature film productions. Under his leadership and guidance, the 20 films he has produced have all opened No. 1 at the box office and are all rated Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes. His forward-thinking approach to production, casting and globally resonant storylines make him one of the most exciting and relevant filmmakers of our time.
Since the inception of Marvel Studios, Feige has continually brought together a diverse group of talent for each of his films, seeking out unique and unexpected voices to bring the studio’s stories to life, from writers and directors to actors and below-the-line professionals. This effort reached its apex with this year’s release of the critically acclaimed “Black Panther.” The film became a global cultural phenomenon and a critical hit, proving that showcasing diverse voices can lead to enormous global success. The most successful domestic release of 2018, “Black Panther” earned more than $1.3B worldwide. Among the global hits Feige has produced are “The Avengers,” “Captain America,” “Iron Man,” “Guardians of the Galaxy,” “Thor,” “Doctor Strange,” “Spider-Man: Homecoming,” “Avengers: Infinity War” and, most recently, “Ant-Man and The Wasp.” Feige continues his advocacy of women and representation with the upcoming female-led “Captain Marvel” and storylines around major strong female characters from Black Widow to many more.
A graduate of the University of Southern California, School of Cinematic Arts, Feige first worked for Lauren Shuler Donner and Richard Donner at their Warner Bros.–based production company, which released the action-adventure “Volcano” and the hit romantic comedy “You’ve Got Mail.”
In summer 2008, Feige’s first foray as a full producer was the first fully developed and financed film from the fledgling Marvel Studios, the commercial and critical hit “Iron Man,” directed by Jon Favreau. Feige’s drive to put unique storytellers at the forefront helped to craft groundbreaking and hugely successful projects that became a showcase for unexpected talent both in front of and behind the camera. Feige has continued without breaking stride, breaking numerous box office records and expanding Marvel Studios’ slate to up to three releases per year.
This year in addition to “Black Panther.”Feige produced the long-awaited “Avengers: Infinity War,” which opened to critical acclaim and broke domestic and global box-office records on its way to becoming the highest-grossing Marvel Studios film thus far, as well as “Ant-Man and The Wasp,” which opened No. 1 at the domestic box office and is the 15th Marvel Studios film to surpass $600 million worldwide.