Visual Effects Society Awards: ‘Dune’ wins on way to Oscars

No surprise that “Dune” led among the winners at the Visual Effects Society Awards on March 8. After all, it is the clear frontrunner for Best Visual Effects at the Oscars. It prevailed in the VES equivalent of the Best Picture race — visual effects in a feature motion picture — plus three other categories.

Also in competition for the top VES award were three of its rivals for the Oscar: “No Time to Die,” “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” and “Spider-Man: No Way Home.”  Only the latter won a prize — best mirror dimension environment — from the visual effects wizards.

The top VES race was rounded out by “Godzilla vs. Kong” and “The Matrix Resurrections.” Each of those films had made the top 10 contenders at the academy but failed to make the final five.

The fifth Oscar nominee for Best Visual Effects, “Free Guy,” was snubbed by the VES as was another of the Oscar semi-finalists, “Ghostbusters: Afterlife.” The other two Oscar semi-finalists — “Black Widow” and “Eternals” — contended in other VES categories.

“Encanto” won over on the animated side over “Luca,” “The Mitchells vs. The Machines,” “Raya and the Last Dragon” and “Sing 2.”

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Winners in 25 categories were selected by VES members via virtual events hosted by 10 sections, including Australia, Bay Area, London, Los Angeles, Montreal, New York, Toronto and Vancouver.

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