Richard Corliss: 'Toy Story 3' Won't Win Best Picture
Time magazine critic Richard Corliss says The Race is wrong to think director Lee Unkrich's Toy Story 3 has more of a chance to get its just Oscar deserts just because he ranks it above every live-action (or animated) film this year.
"I do not think Toy Story 3 will win the Oscar for best picture," Corliss wrote in an email to The Hollywood Reporter. "The Academy membership has never believed animated features deserve to be rewarded with the top Oscar, any more than documentaries or foreign-language films. Until 1992 (Beauty and the Beast), no animated feature had been even nominated for the top award. That includes the years of Walt Disney's early feature triumphs -- Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Fantasia, Pinocchio, Bambi -- which were widely proclaimed, wildly popular and released back when, as now, the best picture category had 10 nominees."
"Today animated features are a bigger part of the business; and yes, Up was nominated for best picture last year. But nine years ago the Academy took a major step in sealing the form's ghetto status: it added the best animated feature category. ('We already gave them an award.') Also, since most Academy members have never worked on an animated feature, they can think it's produced by elves or gifted children and not suitable for a prize in the category they're familiar with: best (live-action) picture. The number of animators in the Academy is also too small to exert its muscle and make a difference."
"I'm flattered to be told my designating Toy Story 3 as the year's best movie would spur members to vote for it -- except that two years ago I put WALL-E in the same top slot. Didn't mean a thing."
"I can think of only one reason for the Academy to name Toy Story 3 the Best Picture of 2010: because it IS the best."
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Scott Feinberg, the lead awards analyst for The Hollywood Reporter, is one of the entertainment industry's most experienced and trusted experts about the Oscars, Emmys and Tonys. He started on the awards beat in 2001, writing for independent websites including his own ScottFeinberg.com before joining the Los Angeles Times and then THR, for which he writes “The Race” blog, which won the LA Press Club’s National Entertainment Journalism Award for best entertainment blog of 2012-2013. A voting member of both the Broadcast Film Critics' Association and Broadcast Television Journalists Association, he is also writing a book about film history for young people for which he has interviewed more than 500 high-profile Hollywood figures whose careers span the silent era through the present.
Follow Scott on Twitter at twitter.com/scottfeinberg.