The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences revealed the top 15 films in contention for the 2012 Visual Effects Oscar today and there were hardly any surprises. 

Dominated by summer blockbusters, the Academy's Visual Effects Branch Executive Committee will narrow the list down to 10 in early January.  At that time, all members of the Visual Effects Branch will be invited to view 10-minute excerpts of the shortlisted films on Thursday, January 19.  At that point, the branch members will vote to nominate five films for Oscar consideration.

The 15 films announced today are as follows:

"Captain America: The First Avenger"
"Cowboys & Aliens"
"Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2"
"Hugo"
"Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol"
"Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides"
"Real Steel"
"Rise of the Planet of the Apes"
"Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows"
"Sucker Punch"
"Super 8"
"Thor"
"Transformers: Dark of the Moon"
"The Tree of Life"
"X-Men: First Class"

The 84th Academy Awards nominations will be announced live on Tuesday, January 24, 2012, at 5:30 a.m. PT in the Academy's Samuel Goldwyn Theater.

Who do you think will make the final five VFX nominees? Share your thoughts below.

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