Cinema has changed.
Since the first Oscars in 1929 the tools and equipment used to create films have grown. Green screen, 3d animation, and special effects are frequently used to create worlds that were once not possible.
The Oscars recognise this and have created categories to reward the best in their field. However, the best in his own field Andy Serkis is constantly overlooked because of a technicality.
The master of Mo-Cap has once again delivered an Oscar worthy performance returning to screen as Caesar. War for the Planet of the Apes sees Serkis wrapping up the long running trilogy as the beloved albeit fierce leader of the shrewdness of apes.
Serkis is trapped in the grey area of Mo-cap.
The Academy have viewed Mo-cap as being more on the special effects end of the awards than the acting side. Talk over this stance has been raised yearly especially since the likes of Avatar and The Lord of the Rings.
But it’s time to recognise that Mo-cap is a lot more than just voice acting. Serkis becomes Caesar on screen, the Mo-cap tool capturing his facial expressions and movements perfectly. After all isn’t the camera also used to capture an actor? What about microphones? The academy need to start viewing Mo-cap as a tool the actors use.
When Charlize Theron won an the best actress Oscar for Monster, you wouldn’t have even recognised her. The prosthetics and makeup used on her character changed her face completely. So what’s the difference with Mo-cap? They may have changed the way Andy looks but ultimately it’s replicating him to a tee.
Hopefully this is the year for you Andy. Although there still remains doubt. Mo-cap isn’t going away and if the Academy want to recognise a category for best actors, Serkis should be at the top of the list for his role in Apes.