2015 was a very busy year for animation. From huge box office hits such as Pete Doctor’s Inside Out, to independent adult animated drams such as Charlie Kauffman’s Anomalisa, to downright bizarre flops such as George Lucas’ Strange Magic, not to mention the hundreds of short films and TV shows, the 2015 lineup was a diverse and interesting showcase of animation talent from around the globe.
Now the Academy Awards are here to give well deserved recognition to the best animated features and shorts of 2015. Just about every form of animation is showcased in this years Oscar race and it will be an interesting showdown between many talented film-makers. Which films made the cut and which film-makers have a chance of taking home the coveted golden statue? Let’s find out!
The Nominees for the 2015 Best Animated Picture are:
Anomalisa (Charlie Kaufman, Duke Johnson and Rosa Tran)
Synopsis (from the Oscars website): Michael Stone, a middle-aged motivational speaker who is grappling with an existential crisis, attends a customer service convention in Cincinnati to give a speech. At the hotel, he meets and falls for Lisa, a seemingly ordinary woman who sparks his imagination and energizes him to reexamine his life.
Boy and the World (Alê Abreu)
Synopsis: Despite his family’s poverty, young Cuca lives a satisfying life, full of wonder at his rural surroundings, until his father goes on a train trip and disappears. While searching for his father, Cuca meets a wide variety of people as he journeys from a farming camp to the ocean and a large factory and then back to the big city.
Inside Out (Pete Doctor and Jonas Rivera)
Synopsis: When 11-year-old Riley and her parents move to a new city, it’s up to Riley’s five main emotions — Joy, Sadness, Fear, Anger and Disgust — to help her adjust. Joy and Sadness are accidentally launched on a journey through Riley’s brain to preserve her core memories, and as the duo races back to Headquarters, Fear, Anger and Disgust must figure out how to guide Riley.
Shaun the Sheep (Mark Burton and Richard Starzak)
Synopsis: Shaun and his fellow sheep are disgruntled with the Farmer’s adherence to his rigid schedule, which leaves no room for spontaneous fun, but when he goes missing in the Big City, the flock and sheepdog Bitzer leave their rural home to hunt for their pal, all the while eluding a power-mad animal containment officer.
When Marnie Was There (Hiromasa Yonebayashi and Yoshiaki Nishimura)
Synopsis: After lonely young Anna is sent to live in Hokkaido with her relatives, she spends her time drawing and exploring her rural home. Anna is befriended by a mysterious blonde girl named Marnie who lives in an isolated mansion, and as their bond grows, Anna becomes obsessed with uncovering the secret of Marnie’s life.
The Nominees for the 2015 Best Animated Short are:
Prologue (Richard Williams and Imogen Sutton)
Synopsis: 2,400 years ago, four warriors — two Spartan and two Athenian — battle to the death in an intense struggle witnessed by a little girl, who then runs to her grandmother for comfort.
Bear Story (Gabriel Osorio and Pato Escala)
Synopsis: Every day, a melancholy old bear takes a mechanical diorama that he has created out to his street corner. For a coin, passersby can look into the peephole of his invention, which tells the story of a circus bear who longs to escape and return to the family from which he was taken
We Can’t Live Without the Cosmos (Konstantin Bronzit)
Synopsis: Two best friends have dreamed since childhood of becoming cosmonauts, and together they endure the rigors of training and public scrutiny, and make the sacrifices necessary to achieve their shared goal.
Sanjay’s Super Team (Sanjay Patel and Nicole Grindle)
Synopsis: Young Sanjay, a first-generation Indian-American, is obsessed with television, cartoons and his superhero action figures. He is reluctant to spend time in daily prayers with his devout Hindu father, but a flight of imagination helps him develop a new perspective that he and his father can both embrace.
World of Tomorrow (Don Hertzfeldt)
Synopsis: A little girl named Emily is taken on a fantastical tour of her distant future by a surprising visitor who reveals unnerving secrets about humanity’s fate.
Who do you want to win in this years Oscar’s race? Let us know in the comments!