Following the list of 20 films that were in contention for the Visual Effects category at the Oscars, The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences have announced the ten films that remain in the running. Listed in alphabetical order, they include:
- Alien: Covenant
- Blade Runner 2049
- Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
- Kong: Skull Island
- The Shape of Water
- Star Wars: The Last Jedi
- Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
- War for the Planet of the Apes
Some interesting facts about the remaining films in contention for the award:
Star Wars: The Last Jedi is almost certainly a lock as eight of the nine Star Wars films have been nominated for or won the award (2005’s Episode III is the only film in the series without a VFX nomination).
Many of the films would keep up a streak of a franchise nomination or would break a drought such as Kong: Skull Island, as the 1976 and 2005 remakes of the 1933 original were both nominated and won; Alien: Covenant‘s predecessor Prometheus was nominated in 2012, though that was the first Alien film since Alien 3 to be nominated; The original Blade Runner was nominated but lost to E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial back in 1982; The first Guardians of the Galaxy was nominated back in 2013; Three of Christopher Nolan’s last four films have been nominated (two of them winning, Inception in 2010 and Interstellar in 2014); War for the Planet of the Apes‘ two predecessors were nominated for the award; Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets could become the first Luc Besson film nominated for the award; and The Shape of Water could become the first Guillermo del Toro film nominated for the award (Hellboy 2 and Pan’s Labyrinth were nominated in the Best Makeup effects categories).
Should Okja be among the five finalists, it will be the first time a fictional Netflix original film has been recognized by The Academy. The streaming service has been nominated five years in a row for Best Documentary Feature and won the Best Documentary Short last year.
The ten films previously in the running that were eliminated include Beauty and the Beast, Ghost in the Shell, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, Justice League, Life, Logan, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, Spider-Man Homecoming, Thor: Ragnarok, and Wonder Woman.
The Academy’s Visual Effects Branch Executive Committee determined the shortlist. All members of the Visual Effects Branch will now be invited to view 10-minute excerpts from each of the shortlisted films on Saturday, January 6, 2018. Following the screenings, the members will vote to nominate five films for final Oscar consideration. The full Nominations for the 90th Academy Awards will be announced on Tuesday, January 23, 2018.
The 90th Oscars will be held on Sunday, March 4, 2018, at the Dolby Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center® in Hollywood, and will be televised live on the ABC Television Network at 6:30 p.m. ET/ 3:30 p.m. PT. The Oscars also will be televised live in more than 225 countries and territories worldwide.