Academy picks storytelling vision over computer flash

January 31, 2006, 3:27 PM · I know that there are a great many Aardman fans on the site, so allow me to step away from the theme park news for a moment to note that "Wallace and Gromit in The Curse of the Were-Rabbit" is one step closer to fulfilling my prediction of an Academy Award. The stop-motion animated film was named one of three nominees for this year's best animated feature Oscar this morning.

Kudos, too, to the Academy for honoring "Tim Burton's Corpse Bride" and Hayao Miyazaki's "Howl's Moving Castle." Yep, that means no nod for Disney's "Chicken Little." W&G and the Burton flick were shoe-ins, but it is heartening to see the Academy pick quality over box office in giving the third nod to "Howl's." Surely, this selection should please new Disney animation guru John Lasseter, who's long been known as Miyazaki's biggest booster in the States.

One more thing worth noting: For this first time, there are no exclusively computer-animated films among the best animated feature nominees.

Replies (6)

January 31, 2006 at 7:38 PM · I think Howl's Moving Castle is the best of them all. The movement of the animation is so realistic and the story is a bit complicated than a normal animation. Hayao Miyazaki has become a legend in animator history.
February 1, 2006 at 6:48 AM · They should have just nominated Chicken Little for lack of nominees. I mean Jimmy Neutron was nominated for the first Animated Acedemy Award. I do not think Chicken Little could win, but nominate them for lack of nominees. I hope Corpse Bride wins! Oh, and the reason, in my opinion, they picked Howl's was to be "artsy" and cool. I don't want Howl to win because it is a movie that I would have no interest in seeing out of the three that are being nominated. When Spirited Away won, I was a little angry because I thought the academy was being really "snooty" and picked an artsy film rather than one that has broad appeal!
February 1, 2006 at 10:32 AM · The number of nominees is determined by the number of eligible films. Since there were relatively few animated films released this year, there were just three nominations. For example, this year the number of best song nominees was capped at three due to a lower number of original songs this year. Only once, if memory serves, has there been a full slate of five nominees in the animated feature category.

Finally, isn't the whole point of an arts competition to be, well, artsy? This ain't the People's Choice Awards.

February 1, 2006 at 12:49 PM · I love cheese
February 2, 2006 at 6:06 AM · I guess you are right Robert that a point of the Academy Awards is to be, well, artsy. I just have no interest when something I never heard of wins the award. You are also right about the limited animated movies that were released this year, it was very low. Still, I am suprised that Chicken Little did not get nominated because didn't Shark Tale get nominated last year? Chicken Little couldn't be THAT bad!
February 2, 2006 at 10:43 AM · Well, in 2004, I'd argue there was a huge gap in quality between The Incredibles and Shrek 2 and every other animated feature released that year. Still, personally, I think the Academy picked well in taking Shark Tale for the third slot over Polar Express, Team America: World Police and Yu-Gi-Oh! The Movie. Academy rules dictated three nominees, but if you were looking for a natural gap in quality, last year there were two top-quality films. This year, there are three. (IMHO, of course.)

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