Many visual effects-driven sequels topped last summer's boxoffice, but not all of these successes translated into Oscar interest.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced that seven films remain in contention for achievement in visual effects for the 80th Academy Awards. They are: "The Bourne Ultimatum," "Evan Almighty," "The Golden Compass," "I Am Legend," "Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End," "300" and "Transformers."
"Spider-Man 2" won an Oscar in the category, but this year "Spider-Man 3" failed to make the shortlist. "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix" also failed to cast its spell on Oscar voters, even though all four previous "Potter" films made the Academy's shortlist in past years.
The closely watched, performance-capture-based "Beowulf" was passed over this year. Another film under consideration in both the visual effects and animation category, "Ratatouille," did not make the list.
Members of the Academy's visual effects branch will view 15-minute excerpts from each of the seven shortlisted films Jan. 16. After the screenings, the members will vote to nominate three films for final Oscar consideration. Nominations will be announced Jan. 22.