Emmy award winning visual effects artist Ron Thornton, best known for his work on Babylon 5 passed away yesterday at home after a short illness at the age of 59, as confirmed by his colleague Emile Smith on Twitter.
Thornton co-founded Foundation Imaging and pioneered the CGI and visual effects methods started on Babylon 5 using Newtek’s Video Toaster hardware and Lightwave 3D modeling software that allowed such effects to be both realistic and within a television show budget. He won an Emmy in 1993 for Outstanding Individual Achievement in Special Visual Effects for the work on the pilot movie, Babylon 5: The Gathering, and had three more nominations. Prior to Babylon 5, he had worked on Spaceballs, Critters, and Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future.
After a falling out with the Babylon 5 producers in the third season, he worked on Star Trek: Voyager and Star Trek: Enterprise and co-created the series Hypernauts.