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Oscars VFX contenders down to ten films, including 'Arrival' and 'Rogue One'

Earlier this month, The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences revealed a preliminary list of 20 movies that were under consideration for Academy Award nominations in the Visual Effects category at this year’s awards ceremony. That list has now been cut down to a mere ten films, encompassing a wide range of projects that offered up visual magic on the screen over the last 12 months.

Among the high-profile films to make the cut is Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, this weekend’s blockbuster standalone film set in the acclaimed sci-fi saga’s universe, as well as director Jon Favreau’s live-action adaptation of The Jungle Book, which blurred the line between computer animation and reality with its cast of jungle creatures.

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The ten films selected by The Academy’s Visual Effects Branch Executive Committee include the following projects: ArrivalThe BFG, Captain America: Civil WarDeepwater HorizonDoctor StrangeFantastic Beasts and Where to Find ThemThe Jungle BookKubo and the Two StringsPassengers, and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.

While the list includes some of the year’s biggest superhero and fantasy films (namely Captain America: Civil WarDoctor Strange, and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them), there are also a few lower-profile films contending for the coveted award. Laika’s impressive stop-motion animated feature Kubo and the Two Strings is likely to be a dual contender in the Visual Effects and Animated Feature categories, while oil-platform disaster drama Deepwater Horizon is the sole contender based on a real-world event.

As for which films got axed from the list of contenders, superhero films Batman V. Superman: Dawn of JusticeDeadpoolSuicide Squad, and X-Men: Apocalypse all fell out of contention. Also missing from the updated list was Alice Through the Looking GlassIndependence Day: ResurgenceMiss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar ChildrenStar Trek Beyond, and Warcraft. The only other film based on a real-world event, Sully, was also dropped from the list.

The final list of Academy Award nominations will be announced on Tuesday, January 24, 2017.

This year’s Academy Awards ceremony will be held Sunday, February 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theater in Hollywood, California. The event will kick off on ABC at 7 p.m. ET.