05/26/2008 Press Release
For Immediate Release
Contact for more information:
James Underdown, Executive Director
Center for Inquiry – Los Angeles
(323) 666-9797 ext. 101
James "The Amazing" Randi to be honored by Hollywood Skeptics at Annual Red Carpet Awards Ceremony on June 23rd. Paul Provenza, Julia Sweeney and others to present.
Hollywood, CA. The Independent Investigations Group (IIG), the premier skeptical organization in Los Angeles, has announced that their annual awards ceremony recognizing the promotion of science in popular movies and television will feature an appearance by the godfather of skepticism James "The Amazing" Randi. The IIG Awards recognizes productions and artists for promoting scientific values, encouraging critical thinking, and dispelling myths.
"This year’s awards ceremony will be even bigger and better than last year," said James Underdown, Chair of the IIG and Executive Director of the IIG’s home, the Center for Inquiry – Los Angeles. "We will be adding a VIP cocktail reception and a real red carpet," added Underdown.
The awards presentation will be held on June 23rd at the Steve Allen Theater at the Center for Inquiry-Los Angeles at 4773 Hollywood Blvd, at 7 PM in the evening. In attendance at the ceremony will be Julia Sweeney, Paul Provenza and other celebrity presenters, as well as representatives of the winning movies and shows, VIP guests and Friends of the Center for Inquiry. Members of the press are also welcome.
Nominees for the 2008 Awards include In the Shadow of the Moon (Discovery Films), Phenomenon (NBC), South Park (Comedy Central), Is It Real? (National Geographic), and Penn and Teller’s Bullshit! (Showtime).
Additionally, a television show that promotes pseudoscience or belief in the supernatural will be "honored" with the Truly Terrible Television Award. 2008 nominees include Paranormal State (A&E) and Ghost Hunters (SciFi Channel).
A special honor bestowed by the IIG for exceptional ongoing achievement by an individual in educating the public through entertainment is the induction of that individual into the "Houdini Hall of Honor". This year’s inductee is James "The Amazing" Randi: magician, entertainer, author, and founder of the James Randi Educational Foundation (JREF) and its one million dollar prize for proof of the paranormal or supernatural. His name joins Harry Houdini and Carl Sagan.
Last year’s winners of IIG Awards were episodes of Psych (USA Network) and The Simpsons (Fox TV) for promoting skepticism toward psychics and Creationism. Representatives of both shows attended to accept the awards. The winners of last year’s TTTV awards were "The Montel Williams Show" and "Psychic Detectives" (Court TV). Curiously, no representatives of those programs were present to accept the certificates, which remain on display at CFI-Los Angeles.
For more information on the IIG Awards, the 2007 winners and the awards ceremony, including video of the event, see: http://www.iigwest.org/iigawards/.
The Independent Investigations Group (IIG) is a group of volunteers, established by James Underdown in 2000 as an adjunct to the Center for Inquiry – Los Angeles. The charter of the group is to investigate claims of the supernatural and paranormal and to disseminate the results to the public. The IIG offers a $50,000 prize to anyone who can demonstrate such abilities under controlled conditions. The IIG also serves as the West Coast preliminary screening entity for James Randi and JREF’s $1,000,000 prize. Members of the IIG consist of people from all walks of life: Engineers, scientists, doctors, entertainers, teachers, students, homemakers, and many others, but all having a rational and inquiring mind.