Tag Archives: Visual Effects

Oscar Predictions – Tech Fields: Cameras, Costumes, Makeup, Design, and FX

Gravity-2

Welcome to The Screen Life’s Oscar Predictions! This is part 2 in a 6-part series, in which you will find a quick breakdown of each category, accompanied by ranked predictions. Also be sure to check out the complete OSCAR PREDICTIONS page (in the menu up top), which will be continually updated throughout the week. This is your grand guide to this Sunday’s big night!

Best Cinematography

Gravity‘s Emmanuel Lubezki is long overdue. He has several nominations in his belt but no wins. Even with his amazing career, this is his best work to date. The film is the strongest contender for Best Picture, and it’s tech-work has swept everything so far. Oh and 3D movies have won this award 3 out of the last 4 years (and there was no 3D nominee the year Inception won.) This win is almost the surest thing of the night, but if there’s a spoiler, here’s how that might play out: Inside Llewyn Davis only got 2 nominations, despite its critical respect. This might be the best place to vote for it for those who think it deserves something. Black and white photography often has an advantage when it’s in play, and while Nebraska‘s lens-work is highly notable for more than just the medium, voters may just “vote for the B&W one.” Roger Deakins has more nominations without a win than any cinematographer, and just about any living person ever. But as its only nod, Prisoners won’t get him his first win. The Grandmaster is just happy to be here.

1. Gravity
2. Inside Llewyn Davis
3. Nebraska
4. Prisoners
5. The Grandmaster

Best Costume Design

In the tech categories “best” is often misinterpreted as “most”, and in Costumes (as in Production Design) there is now film with more on screen than the extravagant The Great Gatsby. Despite the film’s overall lukewarm (and that’s being kind) reception, it has been leading the charge. It has major competition, though, from huge Best Picture players and nomination leader. American Hustle is jam-packed with outlandish, scene-stealing disco-era threads. And 12 Years a Slave, while more modest, just surprised with a Costume Designers Guild Award. The Invisible Woman is full of the kind of great Victorian outfits that win here all the time, but did anybody actually see it? Again, The Grandmaster is just happy to be here. Also, let’s take a moment to remember that the best costume work of the year by far wasn’t even nominated: The Hunger Games: Catching Fire should be at the top of this list.

1. The Great Gatsby
2. American Hustle
3. 12 Years a Slave
4. The Invisible Woman
5. The Grandmaster

Best Makeup and Hairstyling

This should be pretty cut and dry. The Lone Ranger did have some quality work, but it was a box office failure. With the entire Academy voting on the category, movies that actually lose money are rarely rewarded. Bad Grandpa actually had very impressive makeup. The old man prosthetics not only looked authentic – Johnny Knoxville quite literally disappeared into his role – but were able to hold up to the brutality of the Jackass-style stunts. It could be a dark horse. But in the end, only one of these is a respected movie and a Best Picture nominee. Add to that the recent news that Dallas Buyers Club‘s impressive makeup work was done on an absolutely minuscule budget of only $250. If American Hustle‘s iconic hairdos were in the mix it might be a tighter race, but as it is, I think we have a pretty clear winner.

1. Dallas Buyers Club
2. Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa
3. The Lone Ranger

Best Production Design

This may be one of the most wide open races this year. Any one of these could conceivably win. All three major Best Pic contenders, and 4th strong nominee are duking it out, but again it seems The Great Gatsby’s opulence might have a slight edge. It won the Art Director’s Guild Award, along with Her and Gravity. But the latter 2 didn’t have to compete with Hustle or Slave. Slave might have a slight advantage there if Hustle loses votes to Gatsby. Personally I think the amazing near-future designs of Her should take this, but realistically it’s probably closer to the back of the pack. Gravity probably has the most subtle work in this arena, but even it could take the award in a sweep. This is a tough one!

1. The Great Gatsby
2. 12 Years a Slave
3. American Hustle
4. Her
5. Gravity

Best Visual Effects

And from wide open to completely closed, locked, bolted, and shuttered: This is by far the easiest category to call. This award was sealed within the first 10 minutes of Gravity’s first premier way back at the Telluride Film Festival. Nothing else even comes close, so ranking is a bit pointless. I would’ve put Pacific Rim at a distant #2, if it hadn’t been surprisingly and unfairly snubbed.

1. Gravity

7. Iron Man 3
8. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
9. Star Trek: Into Darkness
10. The Lone Ranger

 

Check out the other parts of the Oscar Predictions Series here:
Intro
Part 1 – Animated, Foreign, Doc, and Short Films
Part 2 – Technical Categories (Cinematography, Costumes, Makeup, Production Design, and Visual Effects)
Part 3 – Sound and Music
Part 4 – Storytelling (Editing and Screenplays)
Part 5 – Acting
Part 6 – Picture and Director

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Gravity, Frozen Dominate VES Awards

Gravity-2

This may be the least surprising news of the awards season, but it’s news nonetheless. Gravity pretty much swept the Visual Effects Society (VES) Awards at their ceremony Wednesday night.

The only award it could have won but didn’t went to The Hobbit for Animated Character in a Live Action Feature. And that makes sense: they animated Sandra Bullock for scenes that were impossible to shoot practically, but it may be a bit of a stretch to consider that an “animated character.” Smaug is more consistent with the intent of the category.

Elsewhere, Frozen took all four Animated Feature categories. And Game of Thrones took a trio of TV awards.

See below for the complete list of winners. (Check out the nominees here.)

MOTION PICTURES

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Visual Effects-Driven Feature Motion Picture
“Gravity”

Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Feature Motion Picture
“The Lone Ranger”

Outstanding Animation in an Animated Feature Motion Picture
“Frozen”

Outstanding Animated Character in a Live Action Feature Motion Picture
“The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” – Smaug

Outstanding Animated Character in an Animated Feature Motion Picture
“Frozen” – Bringing the Snow Queen to Life

Outstanding Created Environment in a Live Action Feature Motion Picture
“Gravity” – Exterior

Outstanding Created Environment in an Animated Feature Motion Picture
“Frozen” – Elsa’s Ice Palace

Outstanding Virtual Cinematography in a Live Action Feature Motion Picture
“Gravity”

Outstanding Models in a Feature Motion Picture
“Gravity” – ISS Exterior

Outstanding FX and Simulation Animation in a Live Action Feature Motion Picture
“Gravity” – Parachute and ISS Destruction

Outstanding FX and Simulation Animation in an Animated Feature Motion Picture
“Frozen” – Elsa’s Blizzard

Outstanding Compositing in a Feature Motion Picture
“Gravity”

TELEVISION AND COMMERCIALS

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Broadcast Program
“Game of Thrones” – “Valar Dohaeris”

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Commercial
PETA – “98% Human”

Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Broadcast Program
“Banshee” – Pilot

Outstanding Animated Character in a Commercial or Broadcast Program
PETA – “98% Human”

Outstanding Created Environment in a Commercial or Broadcast Program
“Game of Thrones” – “The Climb”

Outstanding Virtual Cinematography in a Live Action Commercial or Broadcast Program
“The Crew”

Outstanding FX and Simulation Animation in a Commercial or Broadcast Program
PETA – “98% Human”

Outstanding Compositing in a Broadcast Program
“Game of Thrones” – “The Climb”

Outstanding Compositing in a Commercial
“Call of Duty” – “Epic Night Out”

OTHER MEDIA

Outstanding Real-Time Visuals in a Video Game
“Call of Duty: Ghosts”

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Special Venue Project
“Space Shuttle Atlantis”

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Student Project
“Rugbybugs”

Lifetime Achievement Award
John Dykstra

Visionary Award
Alfonso Cuarón

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Visual Effects Society Nominations

VES-logo-post

Gravity vs. Not-Gravity. The story of FX this year is dominated by one movie. Gravity essentially won the Oscar in this category (and probably several others) within the first 5 minutes of its first screening.

That’s not to say there wasn’t a lot of impressive work on display from other films. Any other year I’d say Pacific Rim had this in the bag. But like The Lord of the Rings, Avatar, and The Life of Pi, there’s just no competition with the groundbreaking, industry-changing behemoth in the room.

That said, the fun of the Visual Effects Society (VES) Awards, is all the OTHER categories. Seriously, they have a category for EVERYTHING – “Outstanding Animated Character in an Animated Feature Motion Picture”??? Check out the guild’s nominations below…

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Visual Effects-Driven Feature Motion Picture
“Gravity”
“Iron Man 3”
“Pacific Rim”
“Star Trek: Into Darkness”
“The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug”

Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Feature Motion Picture
“Rush”
“The Great Gatsby”
“The Lone Ranger”
“The Secret Life of Walter Mitty”
“The Wolf of Wall Street”
“White House Down”

Outstanding Animation in an Animated Feature Motion Picture
“Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2”
“Despicable Me 2”
“Frozen”
“Monsters University”
“The Croods”

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Broadcast Program
“Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” – Pilot
“Almost Human”
“Battlestar Galactica” – “Blood & Chrome”
“Game of Thrones” – “Valar Dohaeris”
“Inseparable” – “Chernobyl”

Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Broadcast Program
“Banshee” – Pilot
“Da Vinci’s Demons” – “The Lovers”
“Hawaii 5-0” – “Ho’onani Makuakane“
“Mob City” – “A Guy Walks in to A Bar”
“Moonfleet” – “Episode 2”
“The Borgias” – “Relics”

Outstanding Real-Time Visuals in a Video Game
“Call of Duty” – “Ghosts”
“Crysis 3”
“Killzone Shadow Fall”
“NBA 2K14”
“Ryse: Son of Rome”

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Commercial
“Call of Duty: Epic Night Out”
“Galaxy Chauffeur”
“Liberty Group Limited: Answer”
“PETA: 98% Human”
“Sony PlayStation: Perfect Day”

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Special Venue Project
“Hayden Planetarium’s Dark Universe”
“Mysteries of the Unseen World”
“Mystic Manor”
“Space Shuttle Atlantis”
“SpongeBob SquarePants 4D: The Great Jelly Rescue!”

Outstanding Animated Character in a Live Action Feature Motion Picture
“Gravity” – Ryan
“Oz the Great and Powerful” – China Girl
“Pacific Rim” – Kaiju – Leatherback
“The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” – Smaug

Outstanding Animated Character in an Animated Feature Motion Picture
“Epic” – Bomba
“Epic” – Mary Katherine
“Frozen” – Bringing the Snow Queen to Life
“The Croods” – Eep

Outstanding Animated Character in a Commercial or Broadcast Program
“Game of Thrones” – Raising the Dragons
“PETA — 98% Human”
“Smithwick’s” – Squirrel
“Three, The Pony”
“Toy Story of Terror”

Outstanding Created Environment in a Live Action Feature Motion Picture
“Elysium” – Torus
“Gravity” – Interior
“Gravity” – Exterior
“Iron Man 3” – Shipyard
“Pacific Rim” – Virtual Hong Kong

Outstanding Created Environment in an Animated Feature Motion Picture
“Epic” – Pod Patch
“Frozen” – Elsa’s Ice Palace
“Monsters University” – Campus
“The Croods” – The Maze

Outstanding Created Environment in a Commercial or Broadcast Program
“Game of Thrones” – The Climb
“Hell On Wheels” – “Big Bad Wolf”
“Inseparable” – “Chernobyl”
Liberty Group Limited — “Answer”

Outstanding Virtual Cinematography in a Live Action Feature Motion Picture
“Gravity”
“Iron Man 3”
“Man of Steel”
“Pacific Rim” – Hong Kong Ocean Brawl
“The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug”

Outstanding Virtual Cinematography in a Live Action Commercial or Broadcast Program
“Mad Max” – “Ethos”
“Murdered” – “Soul Suspect”
Qualcomm Snapdragon – “A Dragon is Coming”
“The Crew”

Outstanding Models in a Feature Motion Picture
“Gravity” – ISS Exterior
“Pacific Rim”
“Star Trek: Into Darkness”
“The Lone Ranger” – Colby Locomotive

Outstanding FX and Simulation Animation in a Live Action Feature Motion Picture
“Gravity” – Parachute and ISS Destruction
“Man of Steel”
“Pacific Rim” – Fluid Simulation & Destruction
“The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug”

Outstanding FX and Simulation Animation in an Animated Feature Motion Picture
“Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2”
“Epic” – Boggan Crowds
“Frozen” – Elsa’s Blizzard
“The Croods”

Outstanding FX and Simulation Animation in a Commercial or Broadcast Program
“PETA: 98% Human”
Sony PlayStation – “Perfect Day”
Toyota Avalon – “Formula”
“Toy Story of Terror”

Outstanding Compositing in a Feature Motion Picture
“Elysium”
“Gravity”
“Iron Man 3” – Barrel of Monkeys
“Iron Man 3” – House Attack
“The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug”

Outstanding Compositing in a Broadcast Program
“Banshee” – Pilot
“Game of Thrones” – The Climb
“The Conquering of Yunkai”
“Vikings” – “Dispossessed”

Outstanding Compositing in a Commercial
“Call of Duty”— “Epic Night Out”
Jean-Paul Gaultier – “The Sailor”
“Mercedes Sensations”
“Sony PlayStation — Greatness Awaits”
“Sony PlayStation — Perfect Day

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Student Project
“Initium”
“Morphium”
“Rugbybugs”
“Runaway”
“Where the Dream Begins”

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