Annie Awards

Disney/Pixar Withdraws from ASIFA!

Annie Awards, Ed Catmull

Posted by Martin • August 25, 2010

After almost four decades as a loyal sponsor, The Walt Disney Company has withdrawn from the Annie Awards and ASIFA, its parent organization.

Today’s announcement comes from Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios President Ed Catmull: "We believe there is an issue with the way the Annies are judged, and have been seeking a mutually agreeable solution with the board."

Concerns arose due to ASIFA’s questionable policy; anyone can get a membership, and in turn, could skew the vote in what is meant to be a representation of the animation community’s views. In other words, the Annies are not truly an industry award because they can be easily bought out.

To avoid controversy, we won’t directly mention DreamWorks’ policies related to the Annies. This also means that we won’t be covering the 38th annual ceremony as it is unlikely that Toy Story 3 will be eligible to compete.

Should Disney/Pixar have withdrawn from the Annies?

(via Variety)

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Up at the 37th Annual Annie Awards! Wins Best Feature and Best Director!

Annie Awards, Awards, Pete Docter, UP

Posted by Martin • February 6, 2010

Up has reclaimed what many regard as last year’s monumental and unwarranted let down with two top wins at the 37th Annual Annie Awards!

Pete Docter was named Best Director by ASIFA-Hollywood for his latest film which also took home Best Feature for Pixar! "It has been a great year for animation." said Docter as he accepted animation’s highest honor. And he’s right — more on that below.

Pixar’s collection of Golden Zoetropes now includes:

Best Animated Feature: Up — Pixar Animation Studios

Directing in a Feature Production: Pete Docter —  Up — Pixar Animation Studios

• William "Bill" Reeves was also awarded the Ub Iwerks Juried Award by none other than Pixar President Ed Catmull for innovation in animation!

Although Up was nominated nine times and won what most would consider the top prizes, Pixar Animation Studios‘ latest still wasn’t awarded the most statuettes of the night. In fact, two other excellent animated films, Laika’s Coraline and WDAS’s The Princess and the Frog, went home with three awards each. Like Docter said, 2009 was a year filled with wide success in animation, so it’s not surprising that individual achievement prizes went all around recognizing diverse mediums from stop-motion to hand-drawn.

As far as studios go, Walt Disney Animation took the cake with six wins; three for ‘Princess’ and another three for Prep & Landing. DreamWorks followed closely behind with five wins from a wide variety of media including their sole feature film of 2009, a couple of holiday spin-offs and a TV show. But the most excitement is sure to come straight from The Walt Disney Studios which, combined with Pixar and WDAS, now has eight more Annies to celebrate!

Congratulations to Pete Docter, Bill Reeves, and the Up crew on this fine recognition by the animation community! Check out the rest of the deserving Annie Award winners and nominees here. Next stop — the Oscars, and it should be a great show if this is any kind of indicator…

What do you think about the 37th Annual Annie Awards winners? Do you agree with the diverse picks? In your opinion, who should/shouldn’t have won?

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Annie Nominations Announced: Disney/Pixar Domination!

Annie Awards

Posted by Martin • December 1, 2009

We all know how last year turned out at the Annie Awards, but let’s start with a blank slate as 2009 nominations are announced.

Up is a strong contender this year with 9 individual nominations in 8 different categories including Best Animated Feature. When it comes to the Annies, I can see why Up might have appealed more than WALL•E considering the former’s more "cartoon-y" style. 

Also in the running for top honors are Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, Coraline, Fantastic Mr. Fox, The Princess and the Frog, and The Secret of Kells. Seems to me like we’ll be seeing the identical Best Animated Feature list (sans one) during the Oscars. It’s worth noting that Pixar’s Bill Reeves will be presented the Ub Iwerks award for developing particle simulation at the upcoming ceremony. Partly Cloudy, Dug’s Special Mission and the Cars Toons were sadly absent. 

Leading the pack this year is Laika’s Coraline with 10 nominations followed closely by Up and The Princess and the Frog. As a studio, Walt Disney Animation received 17 nominations (including Prep & Landing) and as a company, Disney received 26 — leading by a landslide! Can anyone say Disney domination?

Here’s the full list of nominees from Pixar:
Best Animated Feature: Up
Best Animated Effects: Eric Froemling for Up
Best Character Animation: Daniel Nguyen for Up
Best Character Design: Daniel Lopez-Munoz for Up
Best Directing Feature Production: Pete Docter for Up
Best Music Feature Production: Michael Giacchino for Up
Best Storyboarding Feature Production: Ronnie del Carmen for Up
Best Storyboarding Feature Production: Peter Sohn for Up
Best Writing Feature Production: Pete Docter, Bob Peterson, and Tom McCarthy for Up

Congratulations to the talented team at Pixar and everyone who was nominated! Check out all of the (really!) deserving nominations for this year’s Annie Awards presented by ASIFA Hollywood here. Winners will be announced February 6th, 2010.

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Nine Noms for Pixar at 36th Annual Annie Awards

Annie Awards, Awards, Pixar, Presto

Posted by Martin • December 1, 2008

This year Pixar has some tough competition at the 36th Annual Annie Awards with an unprecedented 17 nominations for Kung Fu Panda, 8 for WALL•E, and 5 for Bolt. Note some of the Kung Fu Panda nominations are repeats in the same category. The top prize will be given to one of the following five animated features (each very deserving): Bolt, Kung Fu Panda, $9.99, WALL•E or Waltz with Bashir.

Here are the noms for WALL•E:
Best Animated Feature (Pixar Animation Studios)
Best Animated Video Game (THQ)
Animated Effects (Enrique Vila)
Character Animation in a Feature Production
 (Victor Navone)
Directing in an Animated Feature Production (Andrew Stanton)
Production Design in an Animated Feature Production (Ralph Eggleston)
Storyboarding in an Animated Feature Production (Ronnie Del Carmen)
Voice Acting in an Animated Feature Production (Ben Burtt)

Presto also got a nom:
Best Animated Short Subject (Pixar Animation Studios)

That brings the awards total to 9 nominations for Pixar. Remember, just because WALL•E didn’t get as many nominations doesn’t mean our favorite little robot won’t come out on top…
Check out the full list of nominees at the official Annie Awards website. The winners will be announced January 30th, 2009. Congratulations to everyone at Pixar and good luck!

P.S. This year John Lasseter took home the Winsor McKay award along with Mike Judge and Nick Park "for career contributions to the art of animation."

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Annie Award Nominees Announced

Annie Awards, Awards, Brad Bird, Michael Giacchino, Ratatouille, THQ, Video Game, Your Friend, The Rat

Posted by Thomas • December 4, 2007

Nominations for the 35th Annual Annie Awards have been announced, with Ratatouille leading the awards for animation with 13 nominations including Best Animated Feature. In the category it is up against:

Bee Movie – DreamWorks Animation
Persepolis – Sony Pictures Classics
Surf’s Up – Sony Pictures Animation
The Simpsons Movie – Twentieth Century Fox

Other categories Ratatouille has been nominated in are:

2 x Animated Effects
Character Animation in a Feature Production
Character Animation in a Television Production
Directing in an Animated Feature Production
Music in an Animated Feature Production
Production Design in an Animated Feature Production
Storyboarding in an Animated Feature Production

3 x Voice Acting in an Animated Feature Production
Writing in an Animated Feature Producti

Other award nominations for Pixar and Pixar related productions include:

Best Animated Short Subject (Your Friend the Rat)
Best Animated Video Game (THQ Inc.)

The full list is here. And if my memory serves me correctly, no winner of the Best Animated Feature at the Annie’s has gone on to not win the Oscar for Best Animated Feature (bar of course, the Academy’s blunder when they gave that penguin film the award instead of Cars. Surely there is no doubt in their minds this year. I guess this article is also a good segue into this New York Times article on the issue of Disney putting Ratatouille up for Best Picture this year also.

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