A lot of feelings regarding this year's nominees. On the one hand, I'm very happy to see that Kubo and the Two Strings was nominated in not one, but two categories. 'Kubo' was a beautiful film that deserved to do far, far better than it did in the box office. Travis Knight and the talented folks at Laika continue to impress with how they push the boundaries of stop-motion animation with every film they release.
And I'm very excited to see that Studio Ghibli was nominated for The Red Turtle. While a joint production between Ghibli and director Michaël Dudok de Wit, having followed the films of both for years, I'm really excited to see this film.
One sad note regarding the selections this year, there was only on female director nominated and it was for a co-directed film: Cara Speller for Pear Cider and Cigarettes. I'm not going to go off on a rant about the number of women creators in animation, however, I find it a little incredulous that there weren't enough women filmmakers making Oscar-worthy films in 2016 to garner more than one nomination, and for a co-directing position at that.
So, if you follow my sister-site 'The Women of Animated Film', this year is a little bittersweet. I was hoping to see more, especially after watching the trailer for the film Once Upon a Line, directed by Alicja Jasnia, which was in the running but didn't make the shortlist.
ONCE UPON A LINE by Alicja Jasina - Trailer from Alicja Jasina on Vimeo.
The following are the films nominated for Best Animated Feature and Best Animated Short Film.
Best Animated Feature:
Kubo and the Two Strings - Laika
Moana - Disney
My Life as a Zucchini - GKids
The Red Turtle - Studio Ghibli
Zootopia - Disney
Best Animated Short:
Blind Vaysha - Theodore Ushev
Borrowed Time - Andrew Coats and Lou Hamou-Lhadj
Pear Cider and Cigarettes - Robert Valley and Cara Speller
Pearl - Patrick Osborne
Piper -Alan Barillaro and Marc Sondheimer
Also worthy of note are the additional nominations in separate, non-animated categories:
Life Animated - Roger Ross Williams
"Can't Stop the Feeling" - Trolls - Dreamworks
"How Far I'll Go" - Moana - Disney
Best Visual Effects:
Kubo and the Two Strings - Laika
As always, for those who would like to see these short films before the awards ceremony, they will be playing at the Detroit Institute of Arts' Detroit Film Theater in January and February.
The schedule from the DIA's website is as follows:
- Friday, February 10, 2017 - 7:00 PM
- Saturday, February 11, 2017 - 7:00 PM
- Sunday, February 12, 2017 - 1:00 PM
- Sunday, February 12, 2017 - 6:00 PM
- Friday, February 17, 2017 - 7:00 PM
- Saturday, February 18, 2017 - 7:00 PM
- Sunday, February 19, 2017 - 1:00 PM
- Sunday, February 19, 2017 - 6:00 PM
- Friday, February 24, 2017 - 7:00 PM
- Saturday, February 25, 2017 - 7:00 PM
- Sunday, February 26, 2017 - 1:00 PM
- Sunday, February 26, 2017 - 6:00 PM
- Friday, March 03, 2017 - 7:00 PM
- Saturday, March 04, 2017 - 7:00 PM
- Sunday, March 05, 2017 - 1:00 PM
- Sunday, March 05, 2017 - 6:00 PM
The Academy Awards will be broadcast on Sunday, February 26, 2017.
Congratulations to all the nominees and to all the filmmakers who submitted their films for consideration.
* The Academy Awards and the Oscar are registered trademarks of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.