Oscar Picks 2016

Oscar Picks 2016

This year, as I did in 2015, I am again compiling a list of which films I think will win during the Academy Awards.

Best Visual Effects

2015 seemed to be the Year of the Bear when it came to visual effects, but the Star Wars: The Force Awakens team at ILM created a wide range of fantastic and believable effects that are sure to win out. After snatching 4 trophies at the VES awards, there seems to be little doubt as to the outcome of this category.

Best Animated Feature Film

There is a strong showing of animated feature nominees this year, but sadly, Inside Out is the only film from the major U.S. studios to be nominated. And previous years have shown that mainstream appeal weighs heavily with Academy voters. Besides that, the film is wonderfully endearing and original and has already received accolades, including a Golden Globe and 10 Annies.

Best Sound Editing

After already having received a BAFTA, Lon Blender and Martin Hernandez are promising candidates for picking up an Oscar in this category for The Revenant. Beyond that, however, their work is excellent. The Soundworks Collection has some good interviews on The Revenant and other Oscar-nominated films for sound here.

Best Sound Mixing

The broader Academy typically lumps sound editing and sound mixing together, so I am also naming The Revenant here.

Best Cinematography

Emmanuel Lubezki, the Oscar-winning DP for Gravity, gets my vote for his outstanding camera work on The Revenant. I have yet to see the film, but the clips I have seen display excellent work by Mr. Lubezki.

See the full list of nominees here: http://oscar.go.com/nominees/animated-feature-film.

Superpose Automatic Cleanplate Creator

Superpose is a plugin from Keller Software for The Foundry’s NUKE and Adobe After Effects that automatically cleans up backgrounds and removes unwanted foreground objects. It does this by statistically analyzing each pixel and recreating the background behind moving objects in an image sequence or video clip. It is not meant to create a perfect, end result but can create very good results. Continue reading

In Memory of Francis L. Camacho

VFX Artist Francis L. Camacho has recently passed away. He worked as a senior and lead matchmover at some of the top studios in the industry, including MPC and Prime Focus World. More personally, Francis L. Camachohowever, he taught the matchmoving class at CGWorkshops that I attended in the summer of 2013. He was not a great teacher, but the things that I learned there have proven invaluable. As an artist and as a teacher, he is greatly missed.

Rest in Peace, Francis.