Submissions for Best Animated Feature Oscar revealed
Since 2011, the Best Animated Feature category at the Oscars has featured five nominees. This year, that streak could be in jeopardy, as 16 movies have been submitted for consideration by the Academy. 16 is the absolute minimum number of movies that can qualify for the award in a year and still have a full slate of five nominees; if any of the submissions are disqualified, 2015 will only feature four nominees for the first time ever.
However, none of movies are live action/animation hybrids (the type of submission most likely to be disqualified, such as The Smurfs 2 back in 2013), or use controversial, but historically qualified, techniques such as motion capture. The only way one of the submissions might drop out is if they fail to make a qualifying run of a week long screening at a theater in Los Angeles County, California. All feature length movies in all categories are required to have a this qualifying run to be considered for the Oscars.
There were a few surprises in the category; LucasFilm's Strange Magic was not submitted, despite having a wide release early in the year. It's poor critical showing combined with not spectacular box office meant it was never a major contender, but it was still expected to be submitted. One title to pop up unexpectedly was Regular Show: The Movie, which was considered by many to be a TV movie only. However, it did have a week long qualifying run back in August, a week before it's television debut on September 1, meaning technically it is more qualified at the moment than more expected contenders than Pixar's The Good Dinosaur, which will have its theatrical release later this month.
The full list includes (with an asterisk placed next to entries known to contain at least one anthropomorphic animal character):
- The Boy and the Beast*
- The Boy and the World
- The Good Dinosaur*
- Hotel Transylvania 2*
- Inside Out*
- The Laws of the Univers - Part 0
- Moomins on the Riviera*
- The Peanuts Movie*
- The Prophet
- Regular Show: The Movie*
- Shaun the Sheep Movie*
- The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water*
- When Marnie Was There
At this time, Inside Out is the front-runner to win; it even has more than a few pundits positing it might become the fourth ever animated Best Picture nominee.