Visual Effects Society slams James Corden, Rebel Wilson’s Cats gag: ‘The best VFX can’t compensate for bad story’
The Visual Effects Society has slammed a segment at Monday’s Academy Awards, in which actors James Corden and Rebel Wilson poked fun at the visual effects of the film Cats. Corden and Wilson played supporting roles in the musical, which opened to scathing reviews and poor box office rejection.
During the segment, the two actors appeared onstage at the Oscars, wearing cheap cat costumes. “As members of the motion picture Cats, no one more than us understands the importance of good visual effects,” they said, before presenting the Oscar for Best Visual Effects.
In a statement, the visual effects society said that “The best visual effects in the world will not compensate for a story told badly.”
Here’s the full statement:
The Visual Effects Society is focused on recognizing, advancing and honouring visual effects as an art form – and ensuring that the men and women working in VFX are properly valued.
Last night, in presenting the Academy Award for Outstanding Visual Effects, the producers chose to make visual effects the punchline, and suggested that bad VFX were to blame for the poor performance of the movie CATS. The best visual effects in the world will not compensate for a story told badly.
On a night that is all about honouring the work of talented artists, it is immensely disappointing that The Academy made visual effects the butt of a joke. It demeaned the global community of expert VFX practitioners doing outstanding, challenging and visually stunning work to achieve the filmmakers’ vision.
Our artists, technicians and innovators deserve respect for their remarkable contributions to filmed entertainment, and should not be presented as the all-too-convenient scapegoat in service for a laugh.
Moving forward, we hope that The Academy will properly honour the craft of visual effects – and all of the crafts, including cinematography and film editing – because we all deserve it.
Directed by Oscar-winner Tom Hooper, Cats features an all-star cast that also includes Judi Dench, Ian McKellan, Idris Elba, Jennifer Hudson, Taylor Swift and others. It was reported that Cats was rushed into theatres before it could be properly finished. Some viewers noted that the ring on Dench’s finger was visible in the film. The effects were tweaked following a disastrous box office opening.
Corden previously threw shade on the film’s reception. “I haven’t seen it, but I’ve heard it’s terrible,” Corden said in a radio interview. “I’ll catch it one day, I imagine.”
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