The Kiwi artists behind the The Hobbit and a lengthening list of Hollywood blockbusters are up for Oscar glory this afternoon.

The Hobbit is nominated for three Oscars - Best Production Design, Best Visual Effects, and Best Make-Up and Hairstyling.

Wellington production house Weta Digital has made history, becoming the first film company to gain three nominations in the visual effects category since 1991.

Digital artists Joe Letteri, Eric Saindon, David Clayton and R. Christopher White are nominated for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Guy Williams is among the nominees for The Avengers and Martin Hill for Prometheus.


Life of Pi is the only film up for a visual effects Oscar that does not feature the work of a Weta nominee.

Newstalk ZB's movie reviewer Darren Bevan said he is not sure The Hobbit will come out on top in one of the most tough-fought Oscar races in recent history.

It wasn't until the end of the Lord of the Rings trilogy that it won big at the Oscars, and he believes the same could happen with The Hobbit.

Bevan says the major battle for New Zealanders to watch will be whether The Hobbit or Life of Pi takes home the visual effects Award.

Bookmakers favour The Hobbit to win the visual effects category at 8/1 odds, compared to 20/1 for the other nominees.

The make-up team behind The Hobbit is also a favourite to win at 2/5.

See some of the amazing transformations they created for the film below or view the full list here.