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)


Technique: Stop-Motion

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)


Technique:  Hand-Drawn

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)




Technique: CG

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)


Technique: Stop-Motion

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)


Technique: Hand-Drawn

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)

Technique: Hand-Drawn

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)

Technique: CG

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)


Technique: Hand-Drawn

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)

Technique: CG

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)


Technique: Hand-Drawn

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!

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The Author

James Nethery

James Nethery

James knew that he wanted to do animation from a very early age thanks to his father being an animator at the Walt Disney Studio. When he was in his teens, he took a serious interest in the art of animation and then, finally, in the year 2011 James graduated from Animation Mentor: The Online Animation School with a diploma in Advanced Character Animation Studies. James is currently working for Floyd County Productions on Archer.


  1. February 27, 2016 at 4:48 pm — Reply

    How can I see Richard Williams film? Is it public yet or still private showings or festivals

  2. February 27, 2016 at 5:51 pm — Reply

    I expect that it’ll be Pixar again, mainly due to exposure and the power of the brand. A shame, since “Inside Out” is actually very good and if it wins it should do so because someone appreciates the quality… Haven’t seen most of the rest, but this years competition looks very good and diverse 🙂

  3. February 27, 2016 at 9:26 pm — Reply

    Anomalisa y Prologue

  4. February 28, 2016 at 5:35 am — Reply

    common it will be inside out …

  5. February 28, 2016 at 6:26 am — Reply

    Pixar owns the Oscars.

  6. February 28, 2016 at 10:53 am — Reply

    Richard Williams!!! 🙂

  7. February 29, 2016 at 12:48 pm — Reply

    The academy doesn’t even watch all of the films in the animation category, the film that wins will always be the one with the best marketing because it will be the only one the academy members would have bothered taking their kids to see.

  8. P
    March 21, 2017 at 7:53 am — Reply

    I only watched Inside Out and Sanjay’s super team. Want to find other animation on the list also. There are many nice animations in 2017. I look forward to seeing Oscar 2017 more than 2016.

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