‘War for the Planet of the Apes,’ ‘Game of Thrones’ Top Visual Effects Awards

Visual Effects Society gives “Apes” the win in a category that also includes the other four Oscar VFX nominees

“War for the Planet of the Apes” was the big winner at the Visual Effects Society’s 16th Annual VES Awards on Tuesday night in Beverly Hills. The film won four awards, including a victory in the category that most closely corresponds to the Oscars VFX race, Outstanding Visual Effects in a Photoreal Feature.

In that category, “Planet of the Apes” was nominated alongside the same four films it will go up against at the Oscars: “Blade Runner 2049,” “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2,” “Kong: Skull Island” and “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.”

The Matt Reeves feature also won for the best character in a photoreal feature (Caesar, the ape played by Andy Serkis), as well as effects simulation and compositing.

Pixar’s animated film “Coco” also won four awards, sweeping the animation categories. “Blade Runner 2049” won two awards, while “Dunkirk” won one.

In the television categories, “Game of Thrones” dominated with five awards to one for “Black Sails.”

Other awards went to “Assassin’s Creed Origins,” “Avatar: Flight of Passage” and the Samsung “Do What You Can’t” and “Ostrich” commercials, which won in all three of the ad categories.

In its first 15 years, the VES honored the film that would go on to win the VFX Oscar 10 times. But two of the times in which the awards differed came with 2011’s “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” and 2014’s “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes,” both of which won the VES Award but lost the Oscar. (“Hugo” and “Interstellar” won those years.)

Weta Digital’s senior digital effects supervisor, Joe Letteri, who headed the team of VFX artists who won for “Planet of the Apes,” was also given the VES’ highest honor, the George Méliès Award, at the ceremony. The VES Lifetime Achievement Award went to director Jon Favreau.

Patton Oswalt hosted the awards, which took place at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.

The VES Awards winners:

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Photoreal Feature: “War for the Planet of the Apes”
Joe Letteri, Ryan Stafford, Daniel Barrett, Dan Lemmon, Joel Whist

Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Photoreal Feature: “Dunkirk”
Andrew Jackson, Mike Chambers, Andrew Lockley, Alison Wortman, Scott Fisher

Outstanding Visual Effects in an Animated Feature: “Coco”
Lee Unkrich, Darla K. Anderson, David Ryu, Michael K. O’Brien

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Photoreal Episode: “Game of Thrones: Beyond the Wall”
Joe Bauer, Steve Kullback, Chris Baird, David Ramos, Sam Conway

Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Photoreal Episode: “Black Sails”: XXIX
Erik Henry, Terron Pratt, Yafei Wu, David Wahlberg, Paul Dimmer

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Real-Time Project: “Assassin’s Creed Origins”
Raphael Lacoste, Patrick Limoges, Jean-Sebastien Guay, Ulrich Haar

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Commercial: Samsung: “Do What You Can’t,” “Ostrich”
Diarmid Harrison-Murray, Tomek Zietkiewicz, Amir Bazazi, Martino Madeddu

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Special Venue Project: “Avatar: Flight of Passage”
Richard Baneham, Amy Jupiter, David Lester, Thrain Shadbolt

Outstanding Animated Character in a Photoreal Feature: “War for the Planet of the Apes”: Caesar
Dennis Yoo, Ludovic Chailloleau, Douglas McHale, Tim Forbes

Outstanding Animated Character in an Animated Feature: “Coco”: Hèctor
Emron Grover, Jonathan Hoffman, Michael Honsel, Guilherme Sauerbronn Jacinto

Outstanding Animated Character in an Episode or Real-Time Project: “Game of Thrones: The Spoils of War”: Drogon Loot Train Attack
Murray Stevenson, Jason Snyman, Jenn Taylor, Florian Friedmann

Outstanding Animated Character in a Commercial: Samsung: “Do What You Can’t,” “Ostrich”
David Bryan, Maximilian Mallmann, Tim Van Hussen, Brendan Fagan

Outstanding Created Environment in a Photoreal Feature: “Blade Runner 2049”: Los Angeles
Chris McLaughlin, Rhys Salcombe, Seungjin Woo, Francesco Dell’Anna

Outstanding Created Environment in an Animated Feature: “Coco”: City of the Dead
Michael Frederickson, Jamie Hecker, Jonathan Pytko, Dave Strick

Outstanding Created Environment in an Episode, Commercial, or Real-Time Project: “Game of Thrones: Beyond the Wall”: Frozen Lake
Daniel Villalba, Antonio Lado, José Luis Barreiro, Isaac de la Pompa

Outstanding Virtual Cinematography in a Photoreal Project: “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2”: Groot Dance/Opening Fight
James Baker, Steven Lo, Alvise Avati, Robert Stipp

Outstanding Model in a Photoreal or Animated Project: “Blade Runner 2049”: LAPD Headquarters
Alex Funke, Steven Saunders, Joaquin Loyzaga, Chris Menges

Outstanding Effects Simulations in a Photoreal Feature: “War for the Planet of the Apes”
David Caeiro Cebrián, Johnathan Nixon, Chet Leavai, Gary Boyle

Outstanding Effects Simulations in an Animated Feature: “Coco”
Kristopher Campbell, Stephen Gustafson, Dave Hale, Keith Klohn

Outstanding Effects Simulations in an Episode, Commercial, or Real-Time Project: “Game of Thrones: The Dragon and the Wolf”: Wall Destruction
Thomas Hullin, Dominik Kirouac, Sylvain Nouveau, Nathan Arbuckle

Outstanding Compositing in a Photoreal Feature: “War for the Planet of the Apes”
Christoph Salzmann, Robin Hollander, Ben Morgan, Ben Warner

Outstanding Compositing in a Photoreal Episode: “Game of Thrones: The Spoils of War”: Loot Train Attack
Dom Hellier, Thijs Noij, Edwin Holdsworth, Giacomo Matteucci

Outstanding Compositing in a Photoreal Commercial: Samsung: “Do What You Can’t,” “Ostrich”
Michael Gregory, Andrew Roberts, Gustavo Bellon, Rashabh Ramesh Butani

Outstanding Visual Effects in a Student Project: “Hybrids”
Florian Brauch, Romain Thirion, Matthieu Pujol, Kim Tailhades