‘Big Hero 6,’ ‘Boxtrolls’ and ‘Dawn of the Planet of the Apes’ Top VES Award Nominations

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The Visual Effects Society today announced the nominations for their 13th Annual VES Awards that recognizes outstanding visual effects artistry and innovation in film, animation, television, commercials and video games.

Leading the pack with five nominations apiece were Big Hero 6, The Boxtrolls, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, and the TV series Game of Thrones. It’s especially nice to see the VES recognize Boxtrolls, which represents a truly new and innovative hybrid form of stop motion and CGI. Trailing closely with four nominations apiece were Interstellar, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies and How to Train Your Dragon 2.

Nominees were selected by VES members via events hosted by its nine sections—Australia, Bay Area, London, Los Angeles, Montreal, New York, New Zealand, Toronto and Vancouver. The VES Awards will be held on February 4th at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles.

The full list of nominees is below:

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Visual Effects-Driven Photoreal/Live Action Feature Motion Picture

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Joe Letteri
Ryan Stafford
Matt Kutcher
Dan Lemmon
Hannah Blanchini

Guardians of the Galaxy
Stephane Ceretti
Susan Pickett
Jonathan Fawkner
Nicolas Aithadi
Paul Corbould

Interstellar
Paul Franklin
Kevin Elam
Ann Podlozny
Andrew Lockley
Scott Fisher

Maleficent
Carey Villegas
Barrie Hemsley
Adam Valdez
Kelly Port
Michael Dawson

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
Joe Letteri
David Conley
Eric Saindon
Kevin Sherwood
Steve Ingram

X-Men: Days of Future Past
Richard Stammers
Blondel Aidoo
Lou Pecora
Anders Langlands
Cameron Waldbauer

Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Photoreal/Live Action Feature Motion Picture

Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)
Ara Khanikian
Ivy Agregan
Sebastien Moreau
Isabelle Langlois

Divergent
Jim Berney
Greg Baxter
Matt Dessero

The Grand Budapest Hotel
Gabriel Sanchez
Jenny Foster
Simon Weisse
Jan Burda

The Imitation Game
Stuart Bullen
Lucy Ainsworth-Taylor
Simon Rowe

Unbroken
Bill George
Steve Gaub
Erin Dusseault
Dave Morley
Brian Cox

Outstanding Animation in an Animated Feature Motion Picture

Big Hero 6
Don Hall
Chris Williams
Roy Conli
Zach Parrish

How to Train Your Dragon 2
Bonnie Arnold
Dean DeBlois
Dave Walvoord
Simon Otto

Rio 2
Carlos Saldanha
Bruce Anderson
John C. Donkin
Kirk Garfield

The Boxtrolls
Travis Knight
Anthony Stacchi
Graham Annable
Brad Schiff

The Lego Movie
Chris McKay
Amber Naismith
Jim Dodd
David Williams

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Visual Effects-Driven Photoreal/Live Action Broadcast Program

Constantine; A Feast of Friends
Kevin Blank
Elizabeth Castro
Yafei Wu
Chris LeDoux

Game of Thrones; The Children
Joe Bauer
Steve Kullback
Stuart Brisdon
Thomas Schelesny
Sven Martin

Hemlock Grove
Matt Whelan
Chris Brown
Todd Masters
Johnathan Banta
Eric McAvoy

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Mark Kolpack
Sabrina Arnold
Gary D Amico
Kevin Lingenfelser
David Beedon

The Flash
Armen Kevorkian
James Baldanzi
Jeremy Jozwick
Andranik Taranyan

Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Visual Effects-Driven Photoreal/Live Action Broadcast Program

American Horror Story; Freak Show; Edward Mordrake, Part 2
Jason Piccioni
Jason Spratt
Mike Kirylo
Justin Ball
Eric Roberts

Black Sails, Episode 1
Erik Henry
Annemarie Griggs
Paul Graff
George Murphy

Crossbones
Kevin Blank
Ron Pogue
Andy Weder
Niklas Jacobson
Mans Bjorklund

Penny Dreadful; Séance
James Cooper
Bill Halliday
Sarah McMurdo
Lorne Kwechansky

Ripper Street; Whitechapel Terminus
Ed Bruce
Alan Collins
Joe Courtis
John O’Connell

Outstanding Real-Time Visuals in a Video Game

Alien: Isolation
Jude Bond
Al Hope
Howard Rayner
Oriol Sans Gomez

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare
Yi-chao Sandy Lin-Chiang
Joseph Salud
Demetrius Leal
Dave Blizard

inFAMOUS: Second Son
Matt Vainio
Horia Dociu
Jason Connell
Bill Rockenbeck

Sunset Overdrive
Jacinda Chew
Bryan Intihar
Grant Hollis

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Commercial

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare; Discover Your Power
Paul O’Shea
Michael Wigart
Andy Boyd
Jacob Montgomery
Benoit Mannequin

Destiny; Become Legend
Eric Barba
Carla Attanasio
Greg Teegarden
Dan Akers

ESA; Ambition
Jakub Knapik
Tomasz Wachnik
Lukasz Sobisz
Michal Skrzypiec

General Electric; Childlike Imagination
Benjamin Walsh
Jennie Burnett
Brian Burke
Dominik Bauch

SSE; Maya
Neil Davies
Alex Hammond
Jorge Montiel
Beth Vander

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Special Venue Project

Hubei in the Air
Andrew Roberts
Claudia Lachnitt
Yas Takata
Boris Schmidt
Sebastian Butenberg

Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy
Tony Apodaca
Marianne McLean
Gilles Martin
Edwin Chang
Mark Mine

Star Journey
Adam Watkins
Viktorija Ogureckaja
Thilo Ewers
Omid Arzhang
Yas Takata

The Hogwarts Express
Chris Shaw
Rich Yeomans
Steven Godfrey
Peter Jopling
John Richardson

The Lost Temple
John Hughes
Walt Jones
Brent Young
Michael Smith

Outstanding Performance of an Animated Character in a Photoreal/Live Action Feature Motion Picture

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes; Caesar
Paul Story
Eteuati Tema
Andrea Merlo
Emiliano Padovani

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes; Koba
Daniel Barrett
Alessandro Bonora
Mark Edward Allen
Masaya Suzuki

Guardians of the Galaxy; Rocket
Kevin Spruce
Rachel Williams
Laurie Brugger
Mark Wilson

Maleficent; Thistlewit
Darren Hendler
Matthias Wittmann
Jeremy Buttell
Elliot Rosenstein

Outstanding Animated Character in an Animated Feature Motion Picture

Big Hero 6; Baymax
Colin Eckart
John Kahwaty
Zach Parrish
Zack Petroc

How to Train Your Dragon 2; Hiccup
Jakob Hjort Jensen
Fabio Lignini
Stephen Candell
Hongseo Park

Rio 2; Gabi
Jason Sadler
Ignacio Barrios
Drew Winey
Diana Diriwaechter

The Boxtrolls; Archibald Snatcher
Travis Knight
Jason Stalman
Michael Laubach
Kyle Williams

Outstanding Performance of an Animated Character in a Commercial, Broadcast Program, or Video Game

Freesat Freetime; Sheldon
Russell Dodgson
Grant Walker
Juan Sebastian Nino
Amar Chundavadra

Game of Thrones; Drogon
Philip Meyer
Thomas Kutschera
Igor Majdandzic
Mark Spindler

John Lewis; Monty the Penguin
Diarmid Harrison Murray
Tim Van Hussen
Amir Bazazi
Georgios Kyparissous

SSE; Maya
Jorge Montiel
Alex Hammond
Daniel Kmet
Philippe Moine

Outstanding Created Environment in a Photoreal/Live Action Feature Motion Picture

Captain America: The Winter Soldier; Triskelion Headquarters
Johan Thorngren
Greg Kegel
Quentin Marmier
Luis Calero

Interstellar; Tesseract
Tom Bracht
Graham Page
Thomas Døhlen
Kirsty Clark

Lucy; Times Square
Richard Bluff
Steve Bevins
Steve DeLuca
Tiffany Yung

Noah; Antediluvian Earth
Grady Cofer
Dan Wheaton
Susumu Yukuhiro
Ben O’Brien

Outstanding Created Environment in an Animated Feature Motion Picture

Big Hero 6; Into the Portal
Ralf Habel
David Hutchins
Michael Kaschalk
Olun Riley

How to Train Your Dragon 2; Oasis
Sun Yoon
Liang-Yuan Wang
Ted Davis
Shannon Thomas

The Book of Life; Magical Land of the Remembered
Glo Minaya
Amy Chen
Sean McEwan
Jeff Masters

The Boxtrolls; Boxtroll Cavern
Curt Enderle
Rob DeSue
Emily Greene
Jesse Gregg

Outstanding Created Environment in a Commercial, Broadcast Program, or Video Game

Coca-Cola; Snowy Forest
Tom Bardwell
Kevin Ives
Kyle Cody
Jimmy Gass

Game of Thrones; Braavos Establisher
Rene Borst
Christian Zilliken
Jan Burda
Steffen Metzner

Penny Dreadful; Séance
Mathew Borrett
Lorne Kwechansky
Graham Day
Jason Gougeon

War Thunder; Battlefield
Andrey Bogdanov
Mikhail Datcik
Dmitriy Ovcharenko
Ekaterina Bogdanova

Outstanding Virtual Cinematography in a Photoreal/Live Action Motion Media Project

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Keith Miller
Jonathan Paquin
Alessandro Saponi
David Houghton Williams

Edge of Tomorrow; Beach and Paris Attacks
Albert Cheng
Jose Enrique Astacio Jr.
Michael Havart
Dion Beebe

Interstellar; Tesseract
Faraz Hameed
Stephen Painter
Hoyte van Hoytema
Dorian Knapp

X-Men: Days of Future Past; Kitchen Scene
Austin Bonang
Casey Schatz
Dennis Jones
Newton Thomas Sigel

Outstanding Models in any Motion Media Project

Big Hero 6; City of San Fransokyo
Brett Achorn
Minh Duong
Scott Watanabe
Larry Wu

The Boxtrolls; Mecha-Drill
Tom McClure
Oliver Jones
Raul Martinez

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies; Laketown
Leslie Chan
Alastair Mayer
Niklas Preston
Justin Stockton

Transformers: Age of Extinction; Knightship
Landis Fields
John Goodson
Anthony Rispoli
Dae Han

Outstanding Effects Simulations in a Photoreal/Live Action Feature Motion Picture

Captain America: The Winter Soldier; Helicarrier Broadside and Crash
Dan Pearson
Sheldon Serrao
Jose Burgos
Eric Jennings

Edge of Tomorrow; Destruction and Sand
Steve Avoujageli
Pawel Grochola
Atsushi Ikarashi
Paul Waggoner

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
Jon Allitt
David Caeiro
Ronnie Menahem

X-Men: Days of Future Past; Quicksilver Pentagon Kitchen
Adam Paschke
Premamurti Paetsch
Sam Hancock
Timmy Lundin

Outstanding Effects Simulations in an Animated Feature Motion Picture

Big Hero 6
Henrik Falt
David Hutchins
Michael Kaschalk
John Kosnik

How to Train Your Dragon 2; The Battle
Spencer Knapp
Baptiste Van Opstal
Lucas Janin
Jason Mayer

The Boxtrolls
Kent Estep
Peter Stuart
Ralph Procida
Timur Khodzhaev

The Lego Movie
Carsten Kolve
Jayandera Danappal
Matt Ebb
Miles Green

Outstanding Effects Simulations in a Commercial, Broadcast Program, or Video Game

Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey
Dominique Vidal
Isabelle Perin-Leduc
Sandrine Lurde
Alexandre Leroug

DirecTV; Landing
Jeffrey Dates
Jimmy Gass
Iwan Zwarts
Ryan Coster

SSE; Maya
Alex Hammond
Peter Agg
Sam Driscoll
Jimmy Gass

Vikings; Invasion Storm Sequence
Jeremy Dineen
Eric Lacroix
Kyle Yoneda
Norman Ran

Outstanding Compositing in a Photoreal/Live Action Feature Motion Picture

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Christoph Salzmann
Florian Schroeder
Quentin Hema
Simone Riginelli

Edge of Tomorrow; Beach
Craig Wentworth
Matthew Welford
Marie Victoria Denoga
Frank Fieser

Interstellar; Water
Raphael Hamm
Isaac Layish
Sebastian Von Overheidt
Tristan Myles

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
Simon Jung
Ben Roberts
Matthew Adams
Jordan Schilling

Outstanding Compositing in a Photoreal/Live Action Broadcast Program

American Horror Story: Freak Show; Edward Mordrake, Part 2
Tommy Tran
JV Pike
Rob Lutz
Matt Lefferts

Game of Thrones; Wight Attack
Keegan Douglas
Okan Ataman
Brian Fortune
David Lopez

Game of Thrones; The Watchers on the Wall
Dan Breckwoldt
Martin Furman
Sophie Marfleet
Eric Andrusyszyn

The Knick; Abigail’s Nose
Vance Miller
Aaron Raff
John Bair
Rebecca Dunn

Vikings; Invasion
Ovidiu Cinazan
Gary Couto
Doug Cook
Angel Li

Outstanding Compositing in a in a Photoreal/Live Action Commercial

Destiny Become Legend
Dan Akers
Nitant Karnik
Matt Smith
Kym Olsen

Kia The Truth
Paul Lambert
Dan Akers
Carlos Morales
Holly Horter

Nike Hypervenom “Mirrors ft. Neymar Jr.”
Dan Williams
Daniel Morris
Ilia Mokhtareizadeh
Greg Spencer

SSE
Neil Davies
Leonardo Costa
Gianluca DiMarco

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Student Project

Deep Dance
Marco Erbrich
Christoph Westphal
Vincent Langer

Dragon Clan
Yahui Fan
Sheng Xu

Murphy
Bruno LeVeque
Xavier Lafarge

Wrapped
Roman Kaelin
Falko Paeper
Florian Wittmann
Paolo Tamburrino

Visionary Award

J.J. Abrams


  • Tim Tran

    This isn’t for best film. This is for best visual effects. And while Book of Life’s character designs are absolutely breathtaking and unique, character designs don’t count as special effects. Rio 2 has great animation, just terrible story, which isn’t the point of the award.

  • Megan

    I like most of the nominations/contenders but I kind of wish, “Song of the Sea,” made it on the list/category but overall, I am looking forward to this.

  • Matt Norcross

    Big Hero 6 deserves the Best Animated Feature nomination, there’s no doubt about it.