When you walk into the atrium of Pixar’s main building in Emeryville, California, there are many things that catch your eye. First, the size of the space and its architectural design are breathtaking, along with the gorgeous pieces of concept artwork that line the building’s walls. Then you are drawn to the glass case near the entrance which is packed with awards statues the studio has earned over its storied history. Pixar has been a mainstay at the Oscars, even picking up two Best Picture nominations, more than any other animation studio in the business. Early this morning, Oscar nominations for the 2017 ceremony were announced and Pixar is indeed included. Find more details about the nominees after the break!
In 2015, Pixar released two feature films and two shorts for the first time, giving the studio more opportunities for awards than it has ever had before – Inside Out and Sanjay’s Super Team were Oscar nominees, with the former taking a golden statue home for Best Animated Feature Film. Last year, Finding Dory and Piper were released in theaters together. Today, one of the two garnered a nomination.
Piper, the stunningly beautiful short from director Alan Barillaro, was nominated in the Animated Short Film category. It is the 13th time that a Pixar film has been nominated in the category. It has been some time since we have seen a Pixar short take the prize – the last was For The Birds, which was released about 15 years ago. Disney Animation has had some recent success in the category, with 2012’s Paperman and 2014’s Feast walking away with the Oscar. The five nominees for this year’s show are:
Finding Dory, however, was left off the list of nominees in the Animated Feature Film category. It joins Cars 2, Monsters University, and The Good Dinosaur as the only Pixar feature films to not receive an Oscar nomination for Best Animated Feature. All four of these films were released between 2011 and 2016, representing quite a shift in awards season for the animation medium. In years past, it was practically a given for a Pixar feature film to be present in the category (and usually, to win). There is more competition than ever before, especially from Pixar’s sister studio Disney Animation – 2013’s Frozen and 2014’s Big Hero 6 took the Oscar, while this year both Zootopia and Moana are nominated. Then last year, Pixar’s own Inside Out overshadowed Good Dinosaur.
John Lasseter has served as the Chief Creative Officer for both studios, and it shows. Disney is in the middle of another renaissance after years of solid yet unmemorable animated films. If anything, it creates a friendly rivalry between the related subsidiaries. It is an exciting time to be a fan of animation. Finding Dory was definitely not a poor Pixar film – critics and fans enjoyed the film, overall. However, Zootopia has been the animated film to beat since its release, and it appears Dory never picked up steam at the beginning of awards season. The five nominees in the category are:
The 89th Annual Oscars is scheduled to be held on February 26th.