Ten Toons Compete for Oscar

The executive committee of the short films and feature animation branch of the Academy has identified ten films eligible to compete in the Best Animated Feature Film category of the 2005 Academy Awards competition. Pics making the first cut include three Disney releases’Chicken Little, Hayao Miyazaki’s Howl’s Moving Castle, and the Vanguard Animation-produced Valiant. The other contenders are Weinstein Co.’s Hoodwinked!, Fox Animation’s Robots, DreamWorks Animation’s Madagascar, Warner Bros.’ Tim Burton’s Corpse Bride, Sony Classics’ Steamboy, DreamWorks Animation’s Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit and Pentamedia Graphics Ltd.’s Gulliver’s Travel.

This year’s darkest horse is Gulliver’s Travel, a CG take on Jonathan Swift’s classic political satire about a man who finds himself a giant in the land of Liliput. Indian toon studio Pentamedia Graphics last year took a stab at the Oscar race with its 2D feature effort, The Legend of Buddha.

Hoodwinked!, Kanbar Ent.’s computer-animated spoof of the Little Red Riding Hood fairytale, opens in roughly 1,800 theaters across North America on Dec. 23. Read about the film’s production in the January issue of Animation Magazine, coming soon to Barnes & Noble and other booksellers. You can also check out the trailer at www.aoltrack.com/r/ca6a5fe600dd49309c7f0d0b5a05f3f6/ and

www.aoltrack.com/r/99aca927f71ce50ec8daecf9d74d8984/.

A maximum of three films can be nominated for the prize this year. Films submitted in the Best Animated Feature category also may qualify for awards in other areas, including Best Picture, provided they meet the rules criteria governing those categories.

The 78th Academy Award nominations will be announced at the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater on Tuesday, January 31, 2006. The 2005 Academy Awards will then be presented on Sunday, March 5, 2006, at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood and Highland, and televised live by the ABC Television Network beginning at 5 p.m. PST.