Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Watch: Joaquin Phoenix Gets His Stoner Detective Groove On In Trailer For Paul Thomas Anderson’s ‘Inherent Vice’ Watch: Joaquin Phoenix Gets His Stoner Detective Groove On In Trailer For Paul Thomas Anderson’s ‘Inherent Vice’ David Fincher Will Direct The Entire First Season Of HBO's 'Utopia' In 2015 David Fincher Will Direct The Entire First Season Of HBO's 'Utopia' In 2015 Brad Pitt Says 'Fury' Co-Star Shia LaBeouf Is "One Of The Best Actors I've Ever Seen" Brad Pitt Says 'Fury' Co-Star Shia LaBeouf Is "One Of The Best Actors I've Ever Seen" First Look: Kristen Stewart & Nicholas Hoult In Drake Doremus’ Sci-Fi Film ‘Equals’ First Look: Kristen Stewart & Nicholas Hoult In Drake Doremus’ Sci-Fi Film ‘Equals’ John Cusack Says Hollywood Is A "Whorehouse" That "Eats Young Actors Up And Spits Them Out" John Cusack Says Hollywood Is A "Whorehouse" That "Eats Young Actors Up And Spits Them Out" New Image From 'Inherent Vice,' Paul Thomas Anderson Completely Changed The Ending From Thomas Pynchon's Book New Image From 'Inherent Vice,' Paul Thomas Anderson Completely Changed The Ending From Thomas Pynchon's Book Why 'You're The Worst' Turned Out To Be The Best TV Show Of The Summer Why 'You're The Worst' Turned Out To Be The Best TV Show Of The Summer Watch: Ellen Page And Kate Mara Are 'Tiny Detectives' In Hilarious 'True Detective' Parody Watch: Ellen Page And Kate Mara Are 'Tiny Detectives' In Hilarious 'True Detective' Parody New Look: Reese Witherspoon And Joaquin Phoenix In Paul Thomas Anderson's 'Inherent Vice' New Look: Reese Witherspoon And Joaquin Phoenix In Paul Thomas Anderson's 'Inherent Vice' Review: David Fincher's 'Gone Girl' Starring Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Tyler Perry, Neil Patrick Harris, Kim Dickens & More Review: David Fincher's 'Gone Girl' Starring Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Tyler Perry, Neil Patrick Harris, Kim Dickens & More 10 Female Directors Who Deserve More Attention From Hollywood 10 Female Directors Who Deserve More Attention From Hollywood Miles Teller Says Role In 'Divergent' Made Him Feel "Dead Inside," And He Took Movie "For Business Reasons" Miles Teller Says Role In 'Divergent' Made Him Feel "Dead Inside," And He Took Movie "For Business Reasons" While You're Waiting For 'Interstellar,' Here's Over 100 Behind-The-Scenes Photos From 'The Dark Knight' Trilogy While You're Waiting For 'Interstellar,' Here's Over 100 Behind-The-Scenes Photos From 'The Dark Knight' Trilogy First Look At 'The Dying Of The Light,' Paul Schrader Quits Film Over What Nicolas Winding Refn Calls "Artistic Disrespect" First Look At 'The Dying Of The Light,' Paul Schrader Quits Film Over What Nicolas Winding Refn Calls "Artistic Disrespect" New Images From 'Interstellar' Arrive, Christopher Nolan Says The Film Is A "Mirror" Of 'Inception' New Images From 'Interstellar' Arrive, Christopher Nolan Says The Film Is A "Mirror" Of 'Inception' Watch: Have A Threesome With Very NSFW Clip From 'Maps To The Stars' With Julianne Moore & John Cusack Watch: Have A Threesome With Very NSFW Clip From 'Maps To The Stars' With Julianne Moore & John Cusack The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes

Does 'The Hobbit' Deserve A VFX Oscar? 3 Featurettes Make The Case

The Playlist By Joe Cunningham | The Playlist January 18, 2013 at 1:55PM

While Peter Jackson’s final film in his epic “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy was showered with Oscars, that won’t be the case for the first installment of “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey." The film picked up just three Oscar nominations, putting it in the running for Makeup and Hairstyling (which it may have a shot at if the voters take beardstyling into consideration too), Production Design and Visual Effects. In that final category 'The Hobbit' will face stiff competition in the form of “Life of Pi,” “The Avengers,” “Prometheus” and “Snow White and the Huntsman,” but three new featurettes argue that the work done by Weta on 'The Hobbit' deserves to come out on top.
1
The Hobbit Gollum

While Peter Jackson’s final film in his epic “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy was showered with Oscars, that won’t be the case for the first installment of “The HobbitAn Unexpected Journey." The film picked up just three Oscar nominations, putting it in the running for Makeup and Hairstyling (which it may have a shot at if the voters take beardstyling into consideration too), Production Design and Visual Effects. In that final category 'The Hobbit' will face stiff competition in the form of “Life of Pi,” “The Avengers,” “Prometheus” and “Snow White and the Huntsman,” but three new featurettes argue that the work done by Weta on 'The Hobbit' deserves to come out on top.

Between them, the other nominees created an array of digital/digitally enhanced characters including a Bengal tiger, a Hulk, that weird stag in SWATH, and those Jason Statham-esque aliens in "Prometheus," but a new article over on Hero Complex argues that their achievements were (literally) dwarfed by 'The Hobbit.' The article explains that Weta faced unique challenges thanks to Jackson’s decision to shoot in 48fps, and the scrutiny that would be on the theater-like dialogue scene that depicted the "Riddles in the Dark." The three featurettes each go into specifics on how Weta worked on Gollum, Azog and the scrotum-necked Goblin King.

Whether these will do anything to sway Academy voters is another matter, but there’s no doubt that the film produced some truly incredible visual effects. We would, however, argue that even by focusing on these three characters there’s a noticeable variation in quality. Gollum’s flawless, and while we weren’t exactly convinced by the Goblin King as a whole, some of the design details that were realized for that character were truly stunning. It’s this writer’s opinion though, Azog in particular was a weak creation, possibly reflecting Jackson’s late decision to include the character. Frankly we still think this category is fairly open, but if there’s one thing these featurettes draw into focus it's how unlucky Andy Serkis has been never to be recognized with a statuette for his performance as Gollum.  

This article is related to: The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Peter Jackson, Andy Serkis


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates