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BAFTA VFX nominations

Which film should win the BAFTA VFX award?

Avatar72%[ 26 ]
District 917%[ 6 ]
Harry Potter & The Half-Blood Prince0%[ 0 ]
The Hurt Locker6%[ 2 ]
Star Trek6%[ 2 ]

Total Votes : 36

Posted: Thu, 21st Jan 2010, 1:35pm

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Simon K Jones

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BAFTA have announced their film awards nominations, including the Special Visual Effects category. It's particularly tough competition this year, not least due to the seemingly all-conquering Avatar. Particularly interesting to see The Hurt Locker in the running, given that the US Academy didn't even include it on their longlist.

  • Avatar
  • District 9
  • Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
  • The Hurt Locker
  • Star Trek

Let us know who you think is the most deserving winner!

Posted: Thu, 21st Jan 2010, 4:35pm

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The Nemesis2161

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there's no way avatar will not win, because it's entirely digital effects (almost), while district 9 had amazing vfx, avatar managed to make an entire film (almost) out of amazing vfx.
Posted: Thu, 21st Jan 2010, 4:35pm

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Atom

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From my recollection there really isn't any discernable VFX work in The Hurt Locker (which really is an excellent movie, I hope it kicks Avatar's ass in the Best Picture noms) to have a nomination here justified.

There are certainly some cool explosions and super-slow-motion shots that punctuate the otherwise restrained and quiet film, but I can't think of much past that.

Huh.
Posted: Thu, 21st Jan 2010, 4:45pm

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Simon K Jones

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Atom wrote:

From my recollection there really isn't any discernable VFX work in The Hurt Locker (which really is an excellent movie, I hope it kicks Avatar's ass in the Best Picture noms) to have a nomination here justified.

There are certainly some cool explosions and super-slow-motion shots that punctuate the otherwise restrained and quiet film, but I can't think of much past that.

Huh.
I've not seen The Hurt Locker yet (I know, I know, I'll try to correct that soon), but I wonder whether BAFTA's definition of Special Visual Effects includes practical, on-set stuff?

Either that, or perhaps the film has effects so good nobody has even realised? smile Given Bigelow is Cameron's wife, perhaps Hurt Locker was actually made using the same techniques as Avatar, and they're going to do some crazy reveal on the night.

In fact, I rather wish Cameron had done that: made an apparently non-effects movie using the Avatar techniques, with the whole cast and crew pretending it had been shot normally until way after it had been released. It would have been a pointless stunt, but worth it just for the looks on the anti-effects brigade. razz
Posted: Thu, 21st Jan 2010, 5:08pm

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b4uask30male

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Avatar, watched it twice in 3D at the cinema and both times couldn't notice any dodgy fx's, when a film is almost all cgi and you believe it, it's got to be a winner! (my view before people moan at me)
Posted: Thu, 21st Jan 2010, 5:22pm

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Fxhome Dude

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Wiki's definition of special effects
I really kinda hope avatar doesn't win. We heard so much about that it would be nice to see the focus on something like the hurt locker or District 9. The hurt locker should get it IMHO...
Posted: Thu, 21st Jan 2010, 6:08pm

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Sollthar

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The one with the best VFX should win. And that's undoubtfully Avatar in that department.
Posted: Thu, 21st Jan 2010, 6:49pm

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Atom

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But what is best, really? I think that's always the tricky thing with VFX.

Is it in the creativity of the design and implementation? Or the level and progressiveness of the technology? Or both? Avatar is undoubtedly the strongest technology-wise, and you do get immersed in the visual effects; but the seaming between real-life and computer-generated isn't exactly the most flawless or, perhaps, effective of all the nominees.

For instance, Harry Potter 6 wasn't without some of it's spotty points (although, as was Avatar) but the shooting on video, grading, and overall 'look' of the movie was incredibly conducive to the style of the visual effects- and for my money they were therefore integrated more-usefully. The same being said for Star Trek, to an even higher degree. There's some obvious, clever thinking and strategizing that went into weaving the effects into the movie for that they're most-impressive and effective, you know? I'd hope this would be true for visual effects in every movie, but alas it is not.

So I ask you: Does Avatar have the latest and most jaw-dropping technology on display? Pretty irrefutably, yes. But is that what a visual effects award is all about? Surely there's something to be said for art within technology.

Sound-design is the same kind of beast award-wise. Is it artistry or precision that you're looking for? The most intricate and layered sound palette (like, say, The Bourne Ultimatum) or something less-complex but just as effective and impressive in it's restraint (No Country For Old Men).

Not saying it one way or another, just wondering what you think.
Posted: Thu, 21st Jan 2010, 7:19pm

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Sollthar

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Personally, Avatar is "best" on any measurement. I can't think of one single measurement where avatar doesn't come out on top. Easily and comfortably.

It looks the most real, it's technically the most advanced, the most creative, the best incorporated, they looked the best, are the most original, look the most real and it's got the most of it and all of that in probably the most difficult environment. = best.

I know you're a big fan of the Star Trek FX. I'm not. They look great, but dead technical objects in space is probably the easiest surrounding you can have for VFX.
Posted: Thu, 21st Jan 2010, 7:36pm

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Atom

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Well, yeah surely I'm biased because I genuinely loved them in Star Trek- but that's even why I mention HP6. I watched it just recently and marveled at how creatively and well the effects meshed into it all; whereas for all the integration of Avatar the moment they pick up a naked live-action Sigourney Weaver or Ney'tiri holds Jake Sully I'm completely taken out of it, because the two styles clash on more than a technical scale. That's just me, though.
Posted: Thu, 21st Jan 2010, 8:17pm

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Sollthar

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Yeah, and I'm biased because I not only disliked the film in general, but also it's visuals.

But in any case, I would be honestly surprised if anything but avatar wins. Then again, it's not like it never happened. smile
Posted: Thu, 21st Jan 2010, 11:25pm

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Thrawn

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Avatar hands down. I loved Harry Potter and Star Trek, but there's no way that Avatar's going to lose. Atom, you're not only making the subject over-complicated, but also being ridiculous. "Best" in Digital FX (which I'm assuming we're all talking about) is hardly a matter of opinion, as you're making it out to be. Avatar has created some of the best digital special effects in the history of cinema, and while Star Trek was a lovely movie, it in no way competes with Cameron's film.

Also keep in mind that Avatar was designed to win this award. Maybe not specifically, but Cameron created this with the hope of portraying his vision with revolutionary VFX. Star Trek was designed to capture the interest of previous Star Trek fans as well as bring others on board the "fan" wagon, which didn't require mind blowing effects.

Give the award to Avatar. God knows the film deserves it.
Posted: Thu, 21st Jan 2010, 11:31pm

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Atom

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If 'best' wasn't a matter of opinion in visual effects most-undoubtedly Transformers would've won three years ago.
Posted: Fri, 22nd Jan 2010, 10:02am

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Simon K Jones

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Yeah, this kind of thing is always opinion based. If VFX were purely a technical exercise then maybe it would be more objective, but once you factor in the creative side it very quickly becomes opinion-central.

My personal favourite is District 9, because the style worked perfectly for me. But, really, Avatar is leagues ahead.

Then again, The Phantom Menace was light years ahead of the rest back in 1999 and that didn't win - presumably because the film itself was very mediocre. In theory Avatar's lacklustre story would cause it similar problems, but that won't be the case here: Hollywood sees Avatar as an industry-saver. It's getting people back into cinema and giving cinemas something unique that they haven't had for decades.

Because of that, it's going to clean up everywhere.
Posted: Fri, 22nd Jan 2010, 1:35pm

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acproductions

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I really hope Avatar wins. It was the best movie Ive ever seen and the whole movie is VFX pretty much.
Posted: Fri, 22nd Jan 2010, 8:58pm

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Serpent

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Tarn wrote:

Given Bigelow is Cameron's wife, perhaps Hurt Locker was actually made using the same techniques as Avatar, and they're going to do some crazy reveal on the night.
Correction: was Cameron's wife. I also thought the nod he gave to her at the Golden Globes was neat, she certainly deserved best director.

Also, Avatar has just got to win Visual Effects. Are the BAFTAs playing in the US?
Posted: Fri, 22nd Jan 2010, 11:13pm

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Redhawksrymmer

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Tarn wrote:

My personal favourite is District 9, because the style worked perfectly for me. But, really, Avatar is leagues ahead.
I agree. While I really did like the VFX in District 9, due to it's almost seamless blending with the real-life footage, Avatar just has to take home this award due to the quite massive leap forward in how it manages to create some fantastic (while not photorealistic, as was promoted) visuals. I rewatched it again in 3D yesterday on a much larger screen, and found both the story of the film but also the visuals to be even more spectacular. It really shouldn't be a contest really, Avatar should be the clear winner - although as has been mentioned previously in the topic, I'm interested to see some of the reasoning behind nominating The Hurt Locker for the award (which was, in my eyes, a superior film in terms of story).
Posted: Sun, 24th Jan 2010, 2:58am

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Toruk Macto

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HURT LOCKER is a really good movie - i hope it wins in best director/best picture - but the effects aren't the most remarkable thing about the movie. I have not seen AVATAR but it seems like the VFX is better than the story, so maybe it should win. STAR TREK was okay, but not special.
Posted: Sun, 24th Jan 2010, 3:00am

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Toruk Macto

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DISTRICT 9 - first half of it deserves every award - second half is okay. Effects are pretty good.
Posted: Sun, 24th Jan 2010, 3:05am

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Rockfilmers

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You know, Avatar had amazing effects, but most of it was pure animation, kind of like Beowulf or something. I thought that the interaction between the live action and cg was amazing (Near the end when Neytiri puts Jake's breathing mask on looked amazing), but really, the same could be said for district 9. In district 9, the CG aliens where composited into the real scene perfectly. In avatar, most of the CG happened in a CG environment and while many people will say that that's the point for best visual effects, I think it would be much easier to control (am I being Naive?). In D-9, the aliens acted seamlessly along side humans where they had to be composited through dust and even a few shots I noticed, dirt on the lens (unless it was CG dirt). My opinion, D-9 should win for best VFX.
Posted: Sun, 24th Jan 2010, 5:09pm

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Atom

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Rockfilmers wrote:

Near the end when Neytiri puts Jake's breathing mask on looked amazing
Ooooooh I thought that looked reeeeeealllly bad VFX-wise, not to mention just all kinds of awkward from every other standpoint. The filmic, slightly-overexposed look of the CG environment and Ney'tiri clashed horribly with the low contrast video-y 'clean' look of the live-action Jake; as if they were from separate styles of movies or scenes at least.

Easily the hugest low-point both in the film and VFX of Avatar in my opinion. I cringed the entire time.
Posted: Sun, 24th Jan 2010, 5:48pm

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martinvb

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Without any doubt: Star Trek!

Warning: don't ask me why. You'll open a Pandora's box. wink
Posted: Wed, 17th Feb 2010, 4:43am

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Cypher

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I'd go with District 9, simply because I was fooled by the visuals and thought that the prawns were actually a mix of puppets and CG, not completely CG.

My opinion is that if you CANT tell something is an effect because it looks so real and blends, that's the highest compliment to be given. Which makes me very curious about Hurt Locker's nomination.

Btw, have the winners already been announced? I haven't been following this at all.
Posted: Fri, 19th Feb 2010, 11:06am

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Simon K Jones

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The awards ceremony is this Sunday (21st Feb), so not long to wait now.
Posted: Wed, 24th Feb 2010, 11:12am

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Simon K Jones

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As expected, Avatar won.

In the VFX showreel clip from Hurt Locker they seemed to show a bunch of pyro behind-the-scenes stuff and some slow motion shots of dirt and ground detonating into little pieces.

So either Hurt Locker has some very cool, very subtle pyro CG, or the BAFTAs still bother to recognise the skill and art of practical special effects.