|First awarded 1929|
Country United States of America
Category of Academy Awards
|Official website oscars.org|
|Presented by Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences|
People also search for Academy Award for Best Film Editing
Currently held by Mark Williams Ardington, Sara Bennett, Paul Norris, Andrew Whitehurst
Winners & Nominees The Jungle BookRobert Legato - Dan Lemmon - Adam Valdez -, The Jungle Book, Winner, Rogue One: A Star Wars StoryJohn Knoll - Hal Hickel - Neil Corbould -, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Nominee, Deepwater HorizonCraig Hammack - Burt Dalton - Jason Billington -, Deepwater Horizon, Nominee, Doctor StrangeStephane Ceretti - Richard Bluff - Paul Corbould -, Doctor Strange, Nominee, Kubo and the Two StringsBrad Schiff - Oliver Jones - Brian McLean -, Kubo and the Two Strings, Nominee, Ex MachinaAndrew Whitehurst - Sara Bennett - Paul Norris -, Ex Machina, Winner, Mad Max: Fury RoadDan Oliver - Andrew Jackson - Tom Wood -, Mad Max: Fury Road, Nominee, The RevenantMatt Shumway - Richard McBride - Cam Waldbauer -, The Revenant, Nominee, The MartianAnders Langlands - Richard Stammers - Steven Warner -, The Martian, Nominee, Star Wars: The Force AwakensNeal Scanlan - Roger Guyett - Pat Tubach -, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Nominee, InterstellarPaul J Franklin - Andrew Lockley - Scott R Fisher -, Interstellar, Winner, Captain America: The Winter SoldierRussell Earl - Dan Deleeuw - Daniel Sudick -, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Nominee, Dawn of the Planet of the ApesJoe Letteri - Dan Lemmon - Erik Winquist -, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Nominee, X-Men: Days of Future PastRichard Stammers - Tim Crosbie - Lou Pecora -, X-Men: Days of Future Past, Nominee, Guardians of the GalaxyStephane Ceretti - Paul Corbould - Nicolas Aithadi -, Guardians of the Galaxy, Nominee, GravityTimothy Webber - Neil Corbould - David Shirk -, Gravity, Winner, Star Trek Into DarknessRoger Guyett - Pat Tubach - Ben Grossmann -, Star Trek Into Darkness, Nominee, The Lone RangerJohn Frazier - Edson Williams - Gary Brozenich -, The Lone Ranger, Nominee, The Hobbit: The Desolation of SmaugJoe Letteri - Eric Saindon - Eric Reynolds -, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Nominee, Iron Man 3Christopher Townsend - Daniel Sudick - Erik Nash -, Iron Man 3, Nominee, Life of PiErik De Boer - Bill Westenhofer - Guillaume Rocheron -, Life of Pi, Winner, Snow White and the HuntsmanCedric Nicolas-Troyan - Neil Corbould - Phil Brennan -, Snow White and the Huntsman, Nominee, The AvengersJanek Sirrs - Daniel Sudick - Guy Williams -, The Avengers, Nominee, The Hobbit: An Unexpected JourneyJoe Letteri - Eric Saindon - R Christopher White -, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Nominee, PrometheusCharley Henley - Richard Stammers - Trevor Wood -, Prometheus, Nominee
The Academy Award for Best Visual Effects is an Academy Award given for the best achievement in visual effects.
History of the award
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences first recognized the technical contributions of special effects to movies at its inaugural dinner in 1928, presenting a plaque for "Best Engineering Effects" to the first Best Picture Oscar winner, the World War I flying drama Wings.
Producer David O. Selznick, then production head at RKO Studios, petitioned the Academy Board of Governors to recognize the work of animator Willis O'Brien for his groundbreaking work on 1933's King Kong.
But it was not until 1938 when a film was actually recognized for its effects work, when a "Special Achievement Award for Special Effects" was given to the Paramount film Spawn of the North. The following year, "Best Special Effects" became a recognized category, although on occasion the Academy has chosen to honor a single film outright rather than nominate two or more films. From 1939 to 1963, it was an award for a film's visual effects as well as audio effects, so usually it was given to two persons, although some years only one or the other type of effect was recognised. In 1964, it was given only for visual effects, and the following year the name of the category was changed to "Best Special Visual Effects".
Between 1972 and 1977, there was no specific award for visual effects. As such work was awarded within the umbrella award called Special Achievement Academy Award. In 1977, a specific award category for visual effects was reintroduced with the current name, "Best Visual Effects", although until 1995, visual effects could for some years continue to be given within the Special Achievement Academy Award instead. 1990 was the last year there was no official nominations, but instead a special achievement given.
To date, there have been two wholly Animated films nominated in this category: The Nightmare Before Christmas in 1993 and Kubo and the Two Strings in 2017. There has been one semi-Animated film nominated, which also won: Who Framed Roger Rabbit in 1988.
Usually, there are three nominated films. In 1979, there were five films nominated. Sometimes, no award is given. Other times, a single film is given the award outright.
In 2007, it was decided that a list of no more than 15 eligible films would be chosen, from which a maximum of 7 would be chosen for further consideration. A vote would then proceed, with a maximum of three nominees. Since 2010, there are five nominees, chosen using a form of range voting. No more than four people may be nominated for a single film.
According to the official Academy Award rules, the criteria are:
(a) consideration of the contribution the visual effects make to the overall production and
(b) the artistry, skill and fidelity with which the visual illusions are achieved.
A number of filmmakers have had their movies honored for their achievements in visual effects; i.e., five films produced by George Pal, five by director/producer George Lucas, five by director James Cameron (who began his career in Hollywood as an effects technician), four by directors Richard Fleischer, Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson, and three by director Robert Zemeckis.
Stanley Kubrick's only Oscar win was in this category, for 1968's 2001: A Space Odyssey. The film's credits list four effects contributors, including Douglas Trumbull. However, according to the rules of the Academy in effect at the time, only three persons could be nominated for their work on a single film, which would have resulted in the omission of either Trumbull, Tom Howard, Con Pederson or Wally Veevers. Ultimately, it was Kubrick's name that was submitted as a nominee in this category, resulting in his winning the award, which many consider a slight to the four men whose work contributed to the film's success.
Early Awards for Special Effects
"For outstanding achievement in creating special photographic and sound effects"
Special Effects (Note: From 1939 to 1962, Visual Effects nominations were shared with Sound Effects nominations as a combined Special Effects category).
Visual Effects Awards
The tables below display the Oscar nominees for Best Visual Effects including the recipients of the Special Achievement Awards.
2010s†The award was a Special Achievement Award instead of a competitive award.
For this Academy Award category, the following superlatives emerge: