With the nominations for this year’s Oscars announced today, it looks like Disney could be set to scoop a second in a row in the Best Animated Feature category, thanks to ‘Big Hero 6’.
Surprisingly, Disney have never won back-to-back Academy Awards for their feature films (and yes, we’re excluding Pixar titles here). You’d need to go back to 1953 and 54, where ‘The Living Desert’ and ‘The Vanishing Prairie’ won Best Documentary in consecutive years, but that’s the nearest they ever came.
Until now, that is.
But unlike last year when ‘Frozen’ appeared to be the outright favourite to nab the award (still fighting off stiff competition from the likes of ‘The Wind Rises’, mind), there are a number of possible winners here in this year’s list of five.
Apart from Disney’s entry, there’s Studio Ghibli’s ’The Tale of Princess Kaguya’, ‘The Boxtrolls’, ‘Song of the Sea’, and DreamWorks’ ‘How to Train Your Dragon 2’.
Ghibli’s frequency in the Best Animation category is always worthy, but having only scooped one solitary statue, which was back in 2002 for Hayao Miyazaki’s delightful ‘Spirited Away’, glory will likely evade them yet again. ‘The Tale of Princess Kaguya' is, according to the consensus, a wonderfully charming film, but didn't do particularly well at the box office.
‘The Boxtrolls' has gained some good, if not middle of the road reviews, with its limp takings failing to ignite the global box office.
‘Song of the Sea' featured during 2014's London Film Festival and doesn't officially arrive to UK shores until July of this year, so the jury (in this country, at least) is still out on that one.
For me, ‘Big Hero 6’s’ biggest challenger is ‘How to Train Your Dragon 2’. It made over $600,000 worldwide, and received widespread praise upon release, with a third film on its way. Personally, it didn’t do a lot for me other than look pretty, so with the wittier quality of ‘Big Hero 6’ on offer, it could be Disney’s to lose, with them being on such a good roll, and all.
Picture credits: Disney, Studio Ghibli, DreamWorks