Hal T. Hickel (born August 14, 1959) is an American visual effects supervisor, animation director, and animation supervisor. He is best known for his work in the Pirates of the Caribbean series, where he was the animation director for Dead Man's Chest and At World's End. He has also served as a visual effects supervisor for films such as Pacific Rim, The Avengers, and Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen.
Hickel was born in New York City and raised in Westchester County. He studied Film at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, and graduated in 1983. After graduating, he began working at Industrial Light & Magic, where he worked on the first three Star Wars films. He eventually moved on to animation and visual effects work on films such as The Abyss, Terminator 2: Judgment Day, and Jurassic Park.
In 2003, Hickel began working on the Pirates of the Caribbean series, where he was the animation director for Dead Man's Chest and At World's End. He helped bring the iconic characters of Jack Sparrow, Davy Jones, and the Kraken to life. The movies were a huge success, and Hickel received an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects for Dead Man's Chest.
In 2008, Hickel moved on to supervise the visual effects for Iron Man and Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. He also supervised the effects for Guillermo del Toro's Pacific Rim in 2013, and was the visual effects supervisor for The Avengers in 2012 and Avengers: Age of Ultron in 2015.
Hickel has also done animation work for films such as the live-action version of The Jungle Book, Iron Man 3, and Guardians of the Galaxy. He was the animation director for The Incredibles 2, which was released in 2018.
Hal T. Hickel has worked in the visual effects and animation field for over 35 years. He has won an Academy Award and been nominated for multiple others. He has worked on some of the most iconic films of the 21st century, and his work has helped bring some of the most beloved characters to life.