Animated Features Face Nov. 1 Oscar Submission Deadline

A new rule introduced this year could result in four or five nominees rather than the customary three.
Warner Bros. Entertainment

Last call for any feature-length animated film that would like to take home an Oscar!

Nov. 1 is the deadline by which filmmakers must submit entry forms and supporting materials to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences if they hope to be considered in the animated feature film category at the 84th Academy Awards. Film prints are then due by Friday, Nov. 11.

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This year, there’s some extra suspense in the Oscar race because of a rule change. Under the old rule, a year in which eight to 15 films were submitted could result in as many as three nominations; if 16 or more films were submitted, there could be as many as five nominees

But given the new prominence of animated movies – which, let’s face it, are often more entertaining and creative than a lot of adult fare – the rules have been revised in a way that could add up to more nominees: Now, eight to 12 submissions can result in two or three nominees; 13 to 15 entries can produce up to four nominees; and 16 or more films can lead to as many as five nominees.

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During the past ten years, there have been two years with five nominees, but most years have produced just three. This year, with possible entries hovering around the 15-film mark, it’s looking like four nominations are highly likely and five a real possibility.

Plus, Pixars’ Cars 2 wasn’t as universally adored as most recent Pixar movies, and so other entries – Paramount’s Rango, Fox’s Rio, Warners’ Happy Feet Two, Dreamworks Animations’ Kung Fu Panda 2 and Puss in Boots – all could have a shot at the gold. Although that could quickly change once everyone gets an eyeful of Steven Spielberg’s The Adventures of Tintin, which could quickly become the front-runner. The powers-that-be in the Academy’s short films and feature animation branch do have to first rule that the movie qualifies since the rules say “motion capture by itself is not an animation technique.” But just judging by the Tintin trailer, the movie appears to have plenty of animation wizardry on display.