'Avatar' VFX Artist Hospitalized, Went Into Surgery Immediately After Oscars Win

Eric Saindon
Richard Harbaugh/A.M.P.A.S. via Getty Images

Eric Saindon had to leave Sunday's ceremony, just after his big win, to have surgery on an intestinal rupture.

One rollercoaster evening! Just after the visual effects team for Avatar: The Way of Water took home the Oscar for Best Visual Effects on Sunday, senior visual effects supervisor Eric Saindon was forced to leave the ceremony and head straight to the hospital.

According to a representative for Weta FX, the VFX production company behind the groundbreaking Avatar sequel, Saindon had been experiencing gastrointestinal pain throughout the day leading up to the evening ceremony.

Saindon checked into the Beverly Hills Hotel around noon but wound up testing negative for kidney stones and appendicitis, so he decided to dampen the discomfort with painkillers until after the show, according to an IndieWire report.

Saindon and his fellow visual effects supervisors wound up taking home the Oscar and delivering an acceptance speech. However, after posing for photos with their awards backstage, Saindon experienced even greater pain.

He left the press room and returned to the hospital, where doctors determined he had a rupture in his small intestine, and immediately performed the surgery.

The rep for Weta FX tells ET, "He’s doing okay and recovering as we speak. I’m just glad he left when he did. A rupture is serious stuff."

The win marked Saindon's first Oscar -- which he accepted alongside fellow VFX supervisors Joe Letteri, Richard Baneham and Daniel Barrett. It also marked the only win for Avatar: The Way of Water, out of a total of four nominations.