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15 films are eligible for the Visual Effects Oscar - but can any beat 'Avatar?'

December 11, 2009 |  5:35 pm

Photo_33_hires The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences today announced the 15 films on the short list for the Achievement in Visual Effects award for the 82nd Academy Awards.

It's an impressive list, featuring such critical and box office hits as "Coraline," "District 9," "Watchmen" and the upcoming "Sherlock Holmes," but the question is: Given the overwhelmingly positive response to the motion-capture wonderland that is James Cameron's "Avatar," does any other film have a chance in that category this year?

You know the answer: Wait until Feb. 2, when the five official nominations for visual effects will be announced along with the rest of the Oscar categories. The ceremony itself takes place March 7.

The list of semifinalists is as follows (in alphabetical order):

"Angels & Demons"



"Disney's A Christmas Carol"

"District 9"


"G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra"

"Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince"

"Sherlock Holmes"

"Star Trek"

"Terminator Salvation"

"Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen"



"Where the Wild Things Are"

-- Paul Gaita

Photo: From "Avatar." Credit: 20th Century Fox