Golden Globes in Toon for ’07

Not even the Hollywood Foreign Press can ignore the growing impact of animation on the art and industry of film. The organization announced today that it has added a Best Animated Feature category for the 64th Annual Golden Globe Awards ceremony in 2007. Eligible films must be “feature-length” (70 minutes or longer) with no more than 25% live action.

The decision to recognize animation with its own category came after members voted on the matter last month. “Animated features have become an important component of the studio lineup so there was an overwhelming consensus that this new category be created,” says Hollywood Foreign Press Association president Philip Berk.

While many in the animation industry will see this development as progress, other will no doubt consider it a double-edged sword. Though the new category means that animation will play a larger role in the prestigious annual event, it also excludes animated features from the Best Picture race. Last year, Disney/Pixar’s The Incredibles was up for Best Picture (Musical or Comedy), and contenders in previous years included Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin and The Lion King, Disney/Pixar’s Toy Story and Toy Story 2, and DreamWorks’ Chicken Run and Shrek. However, an animated film has never won the award.

The Best Animated Feature category will be limited to three nominations per year. If less than eight films qualify, the award will not be given, in which case the films would be eligible for Best Picture. The addition brings the total number of Golden Globe categories to 25, not counting the Cecil B. DeMille lifetime achievement Award.