Photo 2: I hitched a ride with Knights of Good associate Lindsey Koens. The awards didn't start until evening, but people got Lindsey paranoid that we would get stuck in massive traffic and miss the fun if we left too late, so she convinced me that we needed to leave by 6:30am! I talked her into 7:30, since I knew that it was going to be the longest day ever! Needless to say, the hour difference was irrelevant, as we arrived in Vegas around 11:30am, hours earlier than we needed to be! It was about this time we realized that our hotels wouldn't even let us check in until 2pm, so it was off to lunch!
Photo 6: Award ceremonies are funny things. When you get nominated, you're like, "That's cool." The day gets closer, and people ask you about it, and you tend to not think about it much more than that. At least I try not to. Then you arrive, and with each passing moment, as you see stars on the red carpet, and tons of news reporters and photographers, it starts to sink in. And your stomach twists into knots. The possibility of winning becomes as terrifying as the more likely reality of losing. I definitely started getting nervous.
Photo 7: Another comforting factor was that so many friends were there. I got to hang out and catch up with everyone as we waited in line to be interviewed on the red carpet. Technically, it was a BLUE carpet, so if I start calling it that, you will know what I mean!
Photo 8: His brother, Lan Bui, took that one! But now Vu is taking this picture since Lan is in it. And so am I. Get how this is working?
Photo 9: After the Blue carpet run, we all went inside the theater to be seated. I sat next to Felicia Day and Jeff Lewis, which was a highlight of the evening. Jeff asked me if I had an acceptance speech prepared, and, honestly, I didn't! I'm always afraid that the more I focus on winning, the more it will hurt if I lose. It's not like sports, where winning or losing is based on your performance in that moment. I put all my effort into the show back when we were filming, and what's written in that envelope is based on peoples reaction to what I did at that time, and nothing I do at this current moment can change that. Oh, I think I'm gonna puke.
Photo 10: The IAWTV Awards are new, and this was the inaugural ceremony. The Chairman of the Academy took the stage to present the brand new, never before seen award. He warned us that it was extremely heavy, and should only be held by the bottom. The relevance of this was not understood until you actually attempted to hold one! Even with the warning, recipients were shocked at the weight all night as they pulled it from the podium.
Photo 11: The awards ceremony went very smoothly, and they kept things moving at a very fast pace. The live audience was shown an introduction video that asked winners to keep their acceptance speech as brief as possible. No one is as much of a pro as Felicia as she accepted her first award for Best Writing. She makes it look so effortless!
Photo 12: Of course, she gets a lot of practice! Here, Felicia accepts her second award, this one for best Female Performance in a Comedy Series.
Photo 13: And...her third acceptance speech. This time it was for the Guild's web design. At one point, Felicia actually got played off mid-speech! The show technicians raised the music as a cue for her to wrap it up as she thanked everyone involved, and she joked about it. She also joked that everyone was probably sick of her by the third award, but apparently, the Internet cannot get enough Felicia Day!
Photo 17: The rest of the night was very exciting, now that I was on cloud 9! I was the academy's first repeat winner (Felicia's multi-wins were after, but I blogged out of order for dramatic effect. Oh, Hollywood!!!) and so many of the other winners were my dearest, closest friends. It made the night very special. And entertaining. Felicia and I noticed that Jeff Lewis had been missing from his seat since he accepted his award for Best Male Comedy Performance. He was gone way longer than everyone else had been. But then he appeared on stage to present with Taryn Southern, and hilarity ensued.
Photo 18: For me, the most moving acceptance speech of the night was by Sean Becker, for his Best Director win. Sean had been nominated twice in the same category: Best Directory for a comedy series, for both The Guild and The Jeff Lewis 5 Minute Comedy Hour. He snagged the award for The Guild, and in addition to thanking everyone involved with the project, he appealed to members of the audience, and home viewers via the live stream, to support his fellow nominees in their goal of making the internet the next evolution of entertainment. He stated that pursuing this career meant that there were endless hours, unscheduled work flow, and often little or no pay that usually put strains on relationships, family, friends, and loved ones alike. He asked for everyone's patience and understanding as we all work our way through the uncharted labyrinth that is web television, and he thanked everyone for helping him, and all of us, get this far.
Photo 19: The ceremony ended with the final block of awards, Best Drama and Best Comedy series on the web. It was not a surprise to me that The Guild won, but it WAS very surprising that my hand was grabbed and I was whisked up on the stage to join in on accepting the award. Kim and Felicia thanked as many people as possible for their help in keeping The Guild going, and there are SOOOOO many of them. Felicia always says that internet entertainment is like a family, and we need to stick together and support each other. Standing up on that stage, it did indeed feel like family.
Photo 20: Another big win for The Knights of Good was Shawna Trpcic's Best Costume Design for Dragon Age: Redemption. Shawna is awesome, and I can't wait to work with her again!
Photo 21: The best part of the night was getting to celebrate with my favorite people in the whole world. There is no greater reward that having friends believe in you, and I am glad that their trust in me paid off!
Photo 23: Think of any names for the award yet? Here's a closer look at mine and Shawna's design awards. Collectively, Team Knights of Good won 8 out of 13 category nominations, and Jeff Lewis's adds a 9th. Sean Becker joked that we should connect all our awards to build a Fortress of Solitude!
Photo 29: I woke up in the morning, and would have thought the whole thing was a dream if it wasn't for the award sitting on my nightstand. It felt good to put on a Marvel tshirt and just be my normal self again as I packed everything up to head back to LA. The celebration was over, and it was time to get back to work. I was sad to have to say goodbye so soon...
Photo 30: But I think we left off on a pretty good note. Congratulations to all of my fellow Knights of Good, The Guild, Dragon Age: Redemption and IAWTV award winners and nominees. And thank you for an amazing night.
The first thing I did when I got back to LA was make space for my awards on the mantle of the fireplace in my display room. Standing back to view them, it became strikingly clear that said mantle was packed to the hilt with props and mementos from ONLY internet shows I have worked on. This shrine includes The Guild, Legend of Neil, Dragon Age: Redemption, and other web based trophies. Traditionally, the house mantle is home to the most treasured of showpieces. It was interesting to me that these props have found their way there over ones I have created for such Hollywood staples as Terminator 2 or Jurassic Park: Lost World. I think it is because, as hugely successful as the blockbuster movies are, I have found my participation in these interweb shows, to me, the most satisfying experiences of my career. I think this is because the web offers a direct conduit from us to you. It is pure. And it is ours.