‘Blade Runner 2049’ and ‘War for the Planet of the Apes’ lead the feature competition with seven noms apiece.
Baby Groot, a digitally created Sean Young and lots of apes are among the visual effects feats vying for honors at the 16th annual Visual Effects Society Awards, which will be presented Feb. 13 at the Beverly Hilton.
Below is a look at the event, and what it might signal in the VFX Oscar race.
War for the Planet of the Apes and Blade Runner 2049 lead the feature nominees, with seven nominations apiece.
This includes the top category of outstanding VFX in a photoreal feature; they are nominated alongside Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Kong: Skull Island and Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
The same five films are also nominated for the Oscar in VFX.
The work on Apes was led by Weta; and the effects on Last Jedi and Kong: Skull Island were led by Industrial Light & Magic. The bulk of the work of Blade Runner 2049 and Guardians 2 was shared by a collection of VFX houses.
In six of the last 10 years, the winner in the top VES category went on to win the VFX Oscar. Once, in 2011, the winner of the VES category for outstanding supporting VFX (Hugo) collected the VFX Oscar.
Two best picture nominees are up for outstanding supporting VFX in a feature.
Best picture nominees Dunkirk and Darkest Hour are nominated alongside Downsizing, mother! and Only the Brave.
In the category for an outstanding animated character in a photoreal feature, Blade Runner 2049‘s Rachael — a digital version of how Sean Young appeared in the 1982 original Blade Runner — will compete against three apes.
Nominated alongside Rachael in Blade Runner 2049 are Kong from Kong: Skull Island, and Bad Ape and Caesar from War for the Planet of the Apes.
Game of Thrones has the most nominations overall.
It has 11 nominations in the TV categories.
Four-time Oscar-winning VFX supervisor joe Letteri will receive the Georges Méliès Award.
Weta’s Letteri is also nominated for War for the Planet of the Apes. Additionally, the Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented to Jon Favreau.
The complete list of nominees can be found here.