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Best Digital Prodigal 

Nafees Bin Zafar

Staff Pick

Nafees Bin Zafar graduated from Academic Magnet High School in 1995 at the age of 16. Three years later he graduated from the College of Charleston, majoring in computer science. What better way to use such a high intelligence than on Hollywood blockbusters and video games? Zafar did just that, applying his mad computer skills to digital effects in movies like The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring and Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End. In 2008 he shared an Oscar win for his CGI work on these and other films. In October, Zafar returned to the magnet school to give a talk to a packed auditorium. He showed clips from his recent work, including 2012, and discussed his fascination with the forces of nature. After the talk he worked with students in the school’s computer room, setting a great example of what geeks can achieve if they stick to their programming.


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