Smaug's hunt for Oscar gold

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug is up for three pieces of Oscar gold.
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug is up for three pieces of Oscar gold.

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug has come away with three Academy Award nominations.

While that number matches the number of nods the first Hobbit film An Unexpected Journey got in 2013, they aren't all in the same categories.

Both Hobbit I and II got visual effects nominations but the second movie in the trilogy is up for sound editing and mixing. The first Hobbit was nominated in make-up/hairstyling, and production design.

All three of Smaug's nomination puts it in competition with Gravity, which is seen as a leading contender in the visual effects category for its 3D depiction of an astronaut's struggle for survival after her orbiting shuttle is wrecked by space debris.

Many of those named among Smaug's nominations are past nominees for Weta Digital and Park Road Post's work on previous films.

Here's a who's who of Team Smaug up for Oscars:

Visual Effects

Joe Letteri: Eighth Ocar nomination. Past winner for Avatar, King Kong, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers

Eric Saindon: Second nomination.

David Clayton: Second nomination

Eric Reynolds: First nomination.

Sound Editing

Brent Burge: First nomination.

Sound Mixing

Christopher Boyes: Fourteenth nomination. Past winner for King Kong, The Return of the King, Pear Harbor, Titanic.

Michael Hedges: Fourth nomination. Past winner for The Return of the King, King Kong.

Michael Semanick: Tenth nomination. Past winner for King Kong, The Return of the King.

Tony Johnson: Third nomination.

- NZ Herald

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