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The Oscar Winners: “Toy Story 3” and “The Lost Thing”

The winners of this years Academy Awards were announced tonight in Hollywood.

Toy Story 3 won for Best Animated Feature (Director Lee Unkrich, above).

Toy Story 3 also won Best Song, “We Belong Together” by Randy Newman.

Best Animated Short went to The Lost Thing by Andrew Ruhemann and Shaun Tan.

Tim Burton’s Alice In Wonderland won for both Best Art Direction and Best Costume Design.

A complete list of all nominees and winners is posted here.

(Pictured below, in size place, 24-hours before winning the Oscar, The Lost Thing’s director Shaun Tan, Brewmaster Jerry Beck and The Lost Thing’s key animator Leo Baker.)

  • Zap

    The lost thing won :O

    • Matthew Koh

      I KNEW IT!!!

  • Servandot

    The lost thing was sort of a surprise.

  • Lib

    Personally, I liked Day & Night and Madagascar better. They also were much more original approaches in terms of animation as a medium.

    Toy Story 3 as best animated picture was, well, expected.

  • Clement

    I hope blogs will explain what was so great about the lost thing

    • Amelia

      Seriously. I thought it was amateur and pretentious. Maybe I’m just missing something? Can someone who likes this film explain to me why they like it? I’m honestly curious to know.

      • Was My Face Red

        People have different tastes? It’s a shock to discover that I know, but it’s true. Passion Pictures aren’t ‘amateurs.’ Look them up. See? Four people took three years to make that film. It wasn’t pumped out of one of the corporate cartoon sheds. Maybe the judges wanted the award something to go to people who don’t have it so easy?

        Right, snarkyness aside (sorry, the internet tends to do that to you) I did enjoy Day And Night but to me it felt a little trite and easy – slick in a rather factory tooled way. I had liked The Lost Thing as a book already, so I was already half way there. Pretnetious? Well it tries to be about something more than a few visual gags, but doesn’t spell it out too loudly so I guess that might make it feel like the vaguely meaningful things you often see in film festivals. But Tan is a real talent whose work is well worth seeking out.

        Me, I was rooting for the Gruffalo too. Simple and charming and beautifully opened up from the book. It was a children’s film primarily interested in children, which is very rare these days and kinda pure because of it.

      • Amelia

        I understand people have different tastes, that’s why I was asking. I just wanted to hear from someone who liked it, why they liked it, so maybe I can understand that different view point.

        I don’t think I’m going to feel like it’s any less amateur if I learn more about the people who did it. I think if I saw their previous work and it was amazing, I would just wonder why with, “The Lost Thing”, they made something so amateur.

        “Madagascar: Carnet du Voyage” was done by a small group as well, but it doesn’t feel amateur at all. If the academy was looking to honor an independent short, why didn’t they pick this one?

        I think for me, it’s the narration that makes it feel so pretentious. The narration is saying, “This is a very important story about something much deeper then what I’m showing you with the visuals. Just take my word for it.”

    • Dognam H

      The appeal in “The Lost Thing” is the design. Shaun Tan’s passion about the ‘look appeal’ of the film is what shines through.

      The story is intriguing when thought about, especially in reflection of modern society.

      The animation could have been better. This award proves that ‘style’, ‘visuals’ win through with Academy judges, rather than appealing animated movement.

      Well done Shaun Tan. I note the comments all mention his name as the ‘designer’. The animators hardly get a peep (and that’s the exactly way, I think, it should be for this Oscar winning short film).

  • Woo! And I saw The Lost Thing at the Animation Show of Shows!
    I wish Day and Night won instead.

    Toy Story 3 won, what a surprise.
    I wonder if this year that winning streak of theirs will be broken…
    It’s not that I hate Pixar of Toy Story 3, but the anticipation of the Oscars aren’t as fun, when the winner is so obvious.

  • The Obvious

    I disagree with the Academy’s decision on “Best Animated Feature”. “How to Train Your Dragon” deserved the recognition that comes with the winning of an Oscar. I haven’t been this disappointed with the Academy since “Shrek” beat “Monsters Inc.”

    I thought “Kung-Fu Panda” and “Wall-e” both deserved the Oscar for different reasons in 2008, but I can’t believe that “Toy Story 3” deserved to beat “How to Train Your Dragon.”

    As far as I’m concerned, Dreamworks has two classic films that don’t have Oscars. One lost in a toss up, and the other was robbed.

    • How To Train Your Dragon was robbed? How was How To Train Your Dragon so much better then Toy Story 3?

    • Oscar Goldman

      These lamentations for How to Train Your Delusions of Grandeur are expected, but as boring and tedious as the Oscar ceremony itself.

    • There are times where we feel that our choices were “robbed”. I felt that Wall-E was robbed at the Annies that year, not winning one award. That to me was robbed. However, Toy Story 3 was a huge success as a movie, and seeing it wouldn’t win Best Picture (due to politics), the Academy awarded Best Animated Featured to Pixar.

      If it was expected this year, next year will definitely prove predictability: Cars 2 will not win Best Animated Feature. That I assure you. Neither will Kung Fu Panda 2.

      • I agree, I think Happy Feet 2 will clean up shop.

      • The Obvious


        My assessment is based on:

        The boldness of narrative decisions and subject matter. One example is the use of the “dragon” simultaneously as a metaphor for our unexplored inner vitality and our unexplored shadow side. This perfectly blends what the creature is a symbol for in the East and West.

        The real sense of consequences for the lead character in both the intensity of his father’s rejection and his eventual maiming which effectively asserts both the possibilities in change as well as the inevitable risks.

        The timely exploration of the idea that fear without any true understanding can be an accelerant for generational conflicts that, in the end, are about a failure to communicate.

        Technique applied to making me feel for products of consumer culture(toys) and their feelings, no matter how well done, doesn’t speak to me on the same level, and certainly not the third time around. Those landfills in “Wall-e” will have their share of “Buzz” and “Woody” merchandise eventually, and at a certain point we(the audience) can’t grow up without real loss.

        That is not to say that either film is a “Spirited Away,” however “How to Train You Dragon” took some interesting risks and had a more compelling message.


        “These lamentations for How to Train Your Delusions of Grandeur are expected, but as boring and tedious as the Oscar ceremony itself.”

        I agree with your assessment of the Oscars, however a film called “How to Train Your Delusions of Grandeur” was not in competition. If there is such a film you might benefit from watching it.

      • I truly did like the message in HTTYD. The message however is nothing new. You see the themes in HTTYD, in movies like Avatar, Tarzan, Pocahontas, Little Mermaid, to name a few. All these movies are about one culture going against another out of fear, because they don’t understand each other. With the maiming of the lead character, they conveniently chose to hurt the part of Hiccup that was the least useful. He was never considered too good on his feet and he was still perfectly capable with riding Toothless after the injury. I am glad they did show a lasting injury from all the fighting but it had to do just as much with building up sympathy from the audience as showing any real impacting consequence on who Hiccup was as a character.

        The Toy Story trilogy seems to deal with different themes in each movie. The first movie is Woody learning to accept others. The second movie is about Woody learning how to keep faith in his owner. The third movie is about Woody learning how to let go of the kid he loves and move on. All these stories are told extremely well. In Toy Story 3 they were able to use more elements then ever before to heighten the story. Just look at Dice Daisuke’s color script alone and you will see how the lighting and color drove the dramatic elements of the story forward. We see a same location like the Sunnyside Daycare look like paradise one moment and a few scenes later look like a prison, just through the way Dice the rest of the team were able to work the colors and sound. It is your personal taste that make toy product not resonate with you as make believe dragons and I respect that. However, there are many, myself included, who were moved emotionally by these toy products just as much as we were by make believe dragons.

        It seems that your opinion on why HTTYD was robed has more to do with Toy Story 3 not meeting your personal taste, then Toy Story 3 being less of a quality made film then HTTYD.

      • The Obvious

        Well stated rebuttal, and thank you for that. I think you raise some valid points, and I will do my best to address them.

        As for the “nothing new” aspect which is common in popular films, the more significant infraction lies with “Toy Story 3,” the second sequel of the “Toy Story” franchise. A sequel that even Pixar once wrote off as a bad idea. The first “Toy Story” film is a classic and a lot of fun, but you can argue that outside of the technology innovation, it was a very well told “buddy story” that featured a simple and fun concept that was both well and thoroughly explored in the first film.

        As you define the meaning in the sequels (“Woody learning to keep faith in his owner” and “Woody learning to let go of the kid he loves”) these are all compelling when they are about the relationships between human beings, but when they are about toys, the groundbreaking elements of the narrative are a little too disturbing of a commentary on modern consumer culture.

        Woody and Buzz are mass produced toys. Their value is established as being determined by their owners love. It was a funny idea to explore the question “Do old toys get jealous of newer toys?”, but exploring the emotional relationship between us and merchandise in two more films and rewarding the second sequel with an Oscar is something that should give us pause.

        I would argue that the decision to maim Hiccup’s leg was about the idea of ‘leg as a metaphor for stability’ and to bring Hiccup’s relationship with Toothless full circle. It is even on the same side as Hiccup maimed Toothless’ tail. Injuring him in a fashion that made it impossible to ride Toothless isn’t in sync with the message of sacrificing for progress.

        I would also add that removing a young human characters lower leg, is always significant. His stumble the first time he tries to walk as well as the look on his face when he notices the injury are just beautifully done, human moments. But lets also add how much more is at stake for an audience when a movie shows a human father rejecting his son in plain view of the entire society they live in.

        In addition, the examples of cultural difficulty between human cultures, humanlike fantasy creatures, and humanized apes that you cite speak to different metaphors.

        The “dragon” as it was used in this film is a monster with no ability to communicate or visually evoke an at oneness with human beings. As a metaphor it goes beyond the conflict without to the conflict within in a more profound manner. When the father frees Toothless underwater he is confronting the side of his son that he has shunned, and that is where the power of the metaphor is compounded by the fathers rejection of his son being about the rejection of a part of him that he is afraid of.

        We are on the same page regarding the fact that both of these movies are well done from a technical standpoint, and on a “Toy Story” note, I will never forget Buzz losing his arm in the first film, and that film is truly brilliant. I really feel as though the series never needed the sequels. Once you get past the charming premise, “Toy Story” has been largely about adding depth to the relationship between a child/young man and his toys.

        No matter how well done both films are from a technical standpoint, I believe that “How to Train Your Dragon” has the stronger message, the fresher and bolder story, and the more profound use of metaphor.

        It’s no contest.

      • To be honest Obvious I thought the two movies were very well done. I think I would say Toy Story 3 was better, but not by much. I would have been sad if either one had won the award.

        That being said, I think that you are still basing your decision on HTTYD being “robed” on a difference in personal taste. The quality and messages in Toy Story 3 are very strong for me. Based on their critical and puplic success, it seems they were quite strong with most of the world as well. The Toy Story films in general have been about Woody and all of them have dealt with inner conflict. The idea of letting go of someone you love and feel connected to as both a friend and a parental figure, is a huge subject to deal with. I think it is handled extremely well in Toy Story 3. There are many people who have a emotional connection with their toys. In a sense toys give kids comfort and hold a lot of memories for adults. The idea of having and loving toys is not a bad thing. The series of movies did not push for huge merchandising, in fact on of the keys to the Toy Story trilogy is taking care of and cherishing the old toys just as much as the new. I think that was one of the greatest points at the end of Toy Story 3. Andy was giving his old toys to Bonnie and made a point about her needing to take good care of them.

        I am not a huge fan of the Disney Company merchandising the crap out of the Toy Story series, but frankly Dreamworks is trying to do the same thing with HTTYD. If you look at Woody and the rest of the toys just as products meant to sell more toys then I could see how HTTYD would be a story with a much stronger message. I do not consider Woody and the rest of the toys in Toy Story to be products to make me buy more toys. I consider them interesting and in insightful characters that have taken me on a journey through many emotional situations that I find very true to real life.

      • Marco

        HTTYD didn’t really have a fresh and bold message. Its story has been told a million times before in almost the exact same way, sometimes in better ways. I also highly doubt dragons were used as a metaphor. Vikings fight weird beasts: hey look, let’s have them fight dragons. I’m seriously not getting this immense praise for the movie. It wasn’t better than The Illusionist and it certainly wasn’t better than Toy Story 3’s ACTUAL fresh and infinitely more moving story.

      • The Obvious


        I respect your views (as always), and I appreciate the significance toys can have in the lives of children. I don’t find it an unworthy subject to explore. The concept was rich and compelling in the first “Toy Story” movie and particularly in the “Winnie the Pooh” movies where it is about fully inhabiting the land of play and eventually growing up and leaving “The Hundred Acre Wood.”

        I also don’t have a problem with Disney’s or anyone else’s merchandising. My children have Buzz and Woody toys as well “Thomas the Tank Engine” trains, and Totoro stuffed animals not to mention countless Lego blocks that embed themselves in my feet daily.

        I would love to see Pixar make a movie based on Buzz Lightyear or Woody the characters rather than films about the toys based on the characters because I think they are so visually compelling. The opening sequence of “Toy Story 2” and the clips from “Woody’s Roundup” hint at rich possibilities and perhaps Pixar will do so in the future.


        Doubting that the dragons were used as, or even can be used as anything other than, metaphor flies in the face of hundreds of years of mythology and storytelling, but by all means feel free. I give both “Toy Story 3” and “How to Train Your Dragon’s” creators enough respect that they at least know that much. We can praise “The Illusionist,” “Toy Story 3,” and “How to Train Your Dragon” without descending into the petty dismissal of any or all of one of those films’ virtues.

  • Kenny B.

    Gruffalo should’ve won; but congrats to Tan anyway.

  • Lily

    :( I was rooting for How to Train Your Dragon so badly. Toy Story 3 is a sequel, I felt it has won enough in the past, now we will see this movie industry doing more sequels instead of more new original movies.

    • Deaniac

      Uh, for the record, Dragon was based off a BOOK; if it won, there’d probably be more film adaptations of books. Where would your “original movies” be THEN?

      • Lily

        Sequels are never better than adaption of books in my opinion. Especially when it’s done right. And HTTYD was amazingly well done.

        I would rather see more How to Train your Dragon and Iron Giant than sequels of the same characters and same story.

      • tedzey

        This is why it’s better to go into a movie without any knowledge of where it comes from, in my opinion. When you expect what to see on screen, it takes away from the movie going experience. Hearing people compare books to their film counterparts has turned into comparing apples to oranges! The book’s not going anywhere so nothings destroyed!

        And for the record, the animation presentation blowed! While most categories get a well thought slide show of it’s rich history and cultural impact; and what does animation get? An i phone gag Justin Timberlake pulls out of his ass! Crimedy!

      • Well Lily, will say the same thing for HTTYD when they release more sequels? DreamWorks is already in the process of making sequels for HTTYD:



      • Lily

        Yes Tres, I know about the sequels. You don’t have to throw those links in my face. I would say the same thing about KFP 2 and HTTYD 2, I am not bias that it is a Pixar or DreamWorks movie. :)

        However, even if TS3 wasn’t a sequel, I still prefer HTTYD more. It’s just more heart felt. TS is just weird to me in so many sense. I can’t get into the idea of a bunch of toys, freaking out all the time about the human characters abandoning them, and going into a pile of garbage, then washing off with just water and no soap, and then given to a little kid to play.

    • Marco

      Uh, Toy Story has never won a Best Animated Oscar as its prequels were released at a time where the award didn’t exist. What’s with this talk about how adaptations of books are always better than sequels? Absolutely not: a better movie is a better movie is a better movie. I don’t care where it comes from, and humorously enough, a sequel using the same characters took far more risks and told a far more emotional and original story than the non-sequel. Whodathunkit?

  • I still thought How to Train your Dragon was the best of the three closely followed by The Illusionist.

  • Some girl

    Gosh, congrats !
    But geez…man, golly gee…
    What happened to Dragon?????
    And I bet it was the NIN crowd is jumped for joy in the Score category.
    Take my words with a grain of salt, but HTTYD was just…forgotten!
    I am bummed.
    Am I dreaming to big? Wishful thinking? Ughh.

    • 2011 Teenager

      Wow. There are seriously tons of people who thought HTTYD would win?! Looking back, there was more hype about Toy Story 3 than HTTYD could ever build up, both verbally and in marketing, in toys, online, everywhere! It was the fan favorite, and it was the board’s favorite.

      • Some Girl

        Of course we knew it wasn’t going to win, just a better film. There is a difference.

  • Matt Sullivan

    Pixar won?


    • Jam

      I wish I can double and triple like this

  • congratulations to shaun tan, doing us aussie animators proud this year

  • Karl Hungus

    I’ve always rooted for Pixar because they have the art of storytelling dialed in more than any other studio. Their humor, intelligence, craftsmanship and restraint(often the most important ingredient) is unmatched in the field.

    …but was I the only one a little turned off that Lee Unkrich was crowing about Pixar being “the best place to work” in the same year that the Justice Department found Pixar guilty of collusion to keep their workers wages down through an illegal agreement with other companies? That was a heaping helping of arrogance I could have done without.

    Nevertheless, congratulations to Pixar and Shaun Tan & Dave Elsey!

    • Toonio

      Your comment is dead on. Pixar employees have put that company where it is.

      Since the early Lucasfilm days Pixar employees have gotten the short end of the stick over and over. The ones that alway win attention, credits and job satisfaction are the top dogs (Catmull and Smith can be exonerated of any blame, they are not “businessmen”).

      Sometimes I think Joe Ranft’s early departure from this life occurred in part to the fact that the Pixar heart was dying and they didn’t deserve a guy like Joe.

      Read some interesting details about working at Pixar here:


      • Karl Hungus

        You know what though?

        Pixar understand how to get the most out of their employees.. to make work FUN. People will work for substantially less money and amazingly more hours if they have fun doing it. Pixar appears to be capitalizing on this characteristic of human nature. And its more than just ping pong tables and scooters in the hallway. Its letting employees contribute. Putting them in an environment where they can pour their hearts out and things that they dream up, actually get used(!). Thats a fulfilling environment to work in.

        I’ll tell you this, there are about a dozen studios here in Los Angeles(and I’ve worked for many of them) that will not only pay you peanuts and expect you to move mountains and work free overtime, at every juncture of the process those in senior positions will step over a good idea that you contribute for a mediocre one thats theirs. There really is no better way to sew the seeds of dissent at a company than that. And it happens every day here in LA.

        So I’m just being devil’s advocate here, but who’s smarter: those left unfulfilled with rates kept low by a flooded market, or the talented people in northern California who giggle on their drive to work and make less that they “should” be making.

        Tough question…

      • “Fun” won’t feed your family.

      • Sarah

        Thanks for the insightful info Karl. My 5 cents
        on your FUN comment… sarcasm aside of course.
        I agree with what you are saying and as someone who has worked on one of the other Oscar animated films that did not win this year I can tell you that what you say about Pixar and its employees boils down to:
        EGO. Yes, ego; but not that old typical ego everyone has in mind, the ego every animator or artist or jet pilot or football player or handsome guy/gal has. No, not that! Its a bit more subtle, yet none the less an ego and a negative one that desrves attention.

        While what you describe as FUN environment: pool tables, snacks, these being secondary of course to contribution and the pouring of ones heart out for the company – working long hours, fullfillment and again being a fun place is valid. In a monetary sytem we all are in it’s still just ego no matter how you dress it up. Its the fact of working long hours, low pay, fun company, great movies, overtime,
        big-big box office returns you will never see, awards you help other people win (your company), life you spend pouring your heart out. For what??
        For FUN? For that giggle you mention? I partly disagree.

        It boils down to fooling yourself and having an ego, and on the part of Pixar using this knowledge to take adavnatege of this weakness of human nature and use that negative energy by turning it into a positive energy on Pixars campus to make a loooot of money for Disney/Pixar. Besides good animators and artist thay hired even better psychologist and thinkers to work this out before they even made theirs first film which coincidently was Toy Story as well.

        Using the passionate drive of people who would work for Pixar for free while throwing that ego inside of them/you to impress and fool no other than themselves. Big time Karl! Willing to put a blind eye towards a better pay, less hours, more family-leisure time for the sake of working for a FUN company making crazy box office numbers for somebody else, making rich somebody else, YES doing what you like, agree… in the end you only fool yourself while Disney/Pixar is fooling you in this monetary system of ours. Think about it. Pixar has made more than enough money to pay their employees more money. Yes, of course. Why should they when people are willing to work there long hours, low pay for merley satisfiying their EGOs. They never will and thats why they have simply built a system that makes great movies (money) with creative collective energy of many people who fool themselves into this mental paradigm many artist easliy fall for. Anybody can do that. Work for free or for low pay on FUN projects. Of course not anyone has the skills but more and more people do. Everyday. Thats way dont expect the salaries to go up anytime soon while the cost of life everywhere goes up. The question is how many people make their own FUN projects and make a living, money running their own show or offering their services in return for money and personal fun? Something worth considering at least? Having said that I would consider working there one day. Only consider. For now I am happy with that other film gotting nominated. Would have been fun it won but thats ego too.

      • Karl Hungus

        Just one note: I wasn’t defending Pixar per se. I’m just pointing out an angle that they are playing.

      • toothless

        If you’ve ever worked on a big studio project, you would know that work is work and it is not always FUN, no matter how oscar-worthy the project may be.

        While the public may only be exposed to the ping pong tables, swimming pool or pool tables at Pixar, the free food and fancy new campus at Dreamworks, or the sleeper cubicles, wacky games and dorm-like life at Google, the benefits at these companies often go far beyond that. Profit sharing, bonuses, stock options, retirement plans, internal training/cross-training/education, family or pet friendly corporate environments, generous vacations, and long term contracts or permanent staff positions don’t make exciting news articles.

        Large studios such as DW & Disney/Pixar well know the cost of burning our their employees with long hours and do all they can to minimize it especially with the ever increasing slate of films each year. Employees are a long term investment for them, unlike many of the smaller contract FX studios in an artist may ramp right into crunch time from one house to another to another to another.

        The nice thing about both studios is that with a stable job, one is free to pursuit one’s own artistic desires and other hobbies, like that sailboat kept in the garage. Any many of the artists at both studios do just that, especially during down time where many artists in LA would be looking for their next job. Oh but wait, what down time? It’s all work and low pay and no play.

        I loved Dragon, which was a great film that told a great story. There were moments of animation in there that were just beautiful. Unfortunately Toy Story 3 was just a better story-wise in comparison, but only by a few hairs. It’s too bad Tangled didn’t even make it into the running.

      • Jimmy Jam

        Man, you guys have no idea what you are talking about. People at Pixar get paid very well.

  • Toonio

    Toy Story was no surprise for me. The uncalled statement about ABC hosting the awards through 2020 said it all.

    I think there is this little showbiz newspaper call Variety that does a great job keeping up with this kind of announcements.

    Now if the Academy is honoring those who play safe by rewarding sequels. I’ve got the feeling they are leading some studios to the same direction that killed MGM.

    And good for Randy Newman but c’mon! Dido’s song (and performance) had both more heart and feeling.

  • Congrats to the Lost Thing!

    And congrats to Pixar. How to Train Your Dragon may have been a favorite among others but I believe that Toy Story 3 was a much more fulfilling, well written, and well directed film.

  • Well, The Obvious said it all and briefly. Totally agree with him.

    Even though HTTYD is not perfect, I probably liked it better than TS3. I definitely like the ending of HTTYD A LOT MORE than the ending of TS3.

    This year I was rooting for Pixar in the short film department. Day And Night was really good, probably the best they’ve done yet. And I think Teddy Newton is one of the most interesting guys working at Pixar. I hope he gets the chance to direct a feature soon.

    Even the introduction of the awards was boring, with a reference to Shrek, which wasn’t even nominated. Pixar also won last year, and it was predictable, but I really liked the awards introduction. They were five animated movies very different to each other and most of them pretty good and they managed to do a very funny introduction with the characters talking about their nominations. Variety is ok, but I wouldn’t mind to see something similar every year.

  • Justin

    Great job Lee Unkrich and the team at Pixar! All three nominated films were deserving of the award, in my opinion. Congratulations to all of them!

  • Congratulations to the Toy Story 3 crew! You were able to take on some classic characters and make them your own. The film truly felt like a great ending to a great story, full of memorable characters that will entertain and impact generations to come.

  • ajnrules

    While I was hoping for a win for Day & Night and was predicting a win for The Gruffalo, I’m happy with The Lost Thing winning. That makes Shaun Tan the first person of Chinese heritage to win the Best Animated Short Oscar. :)

  • Bob

    I wanted “I See the Light” to win Best Original Song. But “We Belong Together” is a nice song too.

  • Pixar really slam dunked it with TS3. How to train your dragon was visually astonishing but the story was just business as usual. I also had some serious issues with the character designs but that’s just me nitpicking.

    They need to add more nominations to the animated feature category. 3 spots is not enough.

    • They only do more than 3 spots if 15-16 animated movies apply for nomination. Oscar rules.

  • erin

    really happy The Lost Thing won! I thought it was such a charming little short! I love Passion Pictures. Loved seeing the Tangled song performed also :).
    best animated feature… eeehh. We all saw it coming unfortunately.

  • Yoshiki

    I think this year was awesome.
    Toy Story 3, How to Train your Dragon, Despicable Me, The Illusionist, Tangled…All of these were amazing and they got high reviews.

    Oscar, I think you should think more seriously about animation.

    • I personally think last year was awesome-r. Coraline, Fantastic Mr. Fox, Kells and the not nominated Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs were all very different and pretty good movies. Princess And The Frog wasn’t great but it was a good old fashioned traditional animated feature. Even Pixar’s Up was more experimental than most of their film with a very surreal story and unusual characters as the main protagonist.

      This year we got T.S. 3, Dragon, Tangled and The Illusionist, which are all good movies, but the first is a sequel and the Disney movie , even though it’s better than Princess, is again CGI instead of traditional animation or stop motion, so there is less variety in that department. The look and tone of the three first films is more similar (Cloudy, while being CGI, was really a different film in tone and visual style).

      Well, we’ll soon see Rango. I have high hopes for that one. It looks much more interesting than Cars 2, Rio or Winnie The Pooh (though I’ll probably watch those in theaters too).

    • tedzey

      I know! You’d figure for ten years of having a category honoring the best animated film, there would be a nice clip show of the history and cultural significance like most other categories get, right? NO! Instead we get an I-phone gag Justin Timberlake pulls out of his ass!

      Funny thing about that was that it was supposed to be from Shrek, but instead used a backdrop of “Far Far Away” featured in Shrek 2; so they didn’t even get THAT RIGHT!

  • Some Girl

    Oh well, there is always 2013 when Monsters Inc. 2 and HTTYD 2 will be going up against each other. And from what I’ve heard, the sequel to Dragon won’t dissapoint.
    2013 will be a fun year.

    • Jonathan

      Too bad the world ends in 2012!

      • No, the world will only end when the Academy gives the Best Picture Oscar to an animated film (or is that when hell freezes over ? One of those. )

    • Marco

      Monsters Inc. 2 comes out in 2012.

  • 2011 Teenager

    I know what won’t win any awards though. That YouTube Poop edit of movies set to a Auto-tuned song! Ugh.

  • Robert Schaad

    I just want to add that I am not a fan of the music (same every year?)that is played when the animated short subject and animated feature winners make their way to the stage.

    • What in the cel?

      Agreed. I never understood why they don’t just play a piece from the winning shorts score. It’s always over the top hokey circus music that sounds condescending.

      • I noticed the same thing and I always hate that . It’s VERY condescending. The musical director of the Oscar show must figure, hey, it’s for a cartoon so let’s play some sort of vaguely ‘wacky/cartoony’ music as the filmmaker walks up to the podium They’d play the same hokey circus music even if the short was about genocide in Somalia or child prostitution in Thailand.

  • What in the cel?

    For me I think the main difference for HTTYD was it was new and really well handled. Between the music and the character acting, it was an all new experience. I saw Toy Story 3 already in my head before I sat down, very clearly. It was really solid but at the same time very predictable. The jokes write themselves because the characters are based on licenses we are all familiar with, to me that’s sort of a built in crutch. So I saw Toy Story 3 and got what I expected. I saw HTTYD and was pleasantly surprised and really entertained.

    • Stephen M. Levinson

      I agree I personally think How To Train Your Dragons should have won over Toy Story 3. Toy Story 3 is the same characters that everyone loves and was a pretty safe decision on Pixars half. Everyone already loves the characters, and have known and loved them longer than HTTYD ever could. People always go with what their familiar with, it’s why chain restaurants are a genius idea.

    • Marco

      You saw TS3 being a prison escape movie before it started?

  • Inkan1969

    Congrats to Tan and Ruhemann for “The Lost Thing”. I saw the animated shorts package in Greenville last week. I initially had a problem with “The Lost Thing” as I didn’t see the point to it at first. But I finally got the point when I heard the guy’s last few lines, and then the short got much more compelling. The short was Oscar worthy.

    Among the five, I was rooting for “Madagascar: Carnet du Voyage”, for its astonishing diversity of artistic styles, and its incredible 3D effect; MUCH more convincing 3D than any 3D movie I’ve seen, and I didn’t need any glasses. The heavy handed “Let’s Pollute” was the only short I didn’t think deserved its nom; I would’ve replaced it with “The Cow Who Wanted to Be a Hamburger”.

  • I thought Toy Story 3 and How To Train Your Dragon were both very satisfying films, but neither rocked me to my core like Sylvain Chomet’s The Illusionist did. A subtle, beautiful film that hasn’t left me since I saw it. And saw it a second time.

  • Stephen M. Levinson

    I like how Pixar thanked the animators who worked on the film in their acceptance speech.

  • Ryan

    I can’t be the only person who thought all three films were excellent and were deserving of the award, am I?

  • Chelsea

    Oh goodness- it was expected that these replies would be full of ‘oh Pixar won, what a surprise’ and ‘I like how to train your dragon better’.

    Congrats to everyone who was nominated (and, actually not nominated)- they made 2010 a fantastic year for animation.

    That being said- Randy Newman’s acceptance speech was fantastic!

  • Justin Delbert

    Toy Story 3: what a suprize, ha-ha.
    The Gruffalo should have won, but oh well (my dad even predicted the Gruffalo).
    I’m glad that Tangled at least got nominated for best song; it lost to Toy Story 3’s song, but who’s complaining.
    While this is off topic, I thought to myself “I know this is live but I’ll bet this is on a five or ten second delay.” A few seconds after I thought that, guess what happened? Melissa Leo drops the F bomb.
    After I watched the Oscars, I decided to watch What’s Cookin Doc? After all, there isn’t a better night to do so than last night:)

  • Tom

    I know it isn’t the way Awards shows should work, but considering the Best Animated Feature category didn’t exist during Toy Story 1 and 2’s release, I’d say Toy Story 3 deserved it. A bit like the Lord of the Rings… it doesn’t seem like an Oscar for only the film but for the entire trilogy.

    Anyway, I would’ve been happy with TS3 or HTTYD. Everyone needs to stop being so bitter about who won what and be glad that we got some truly fantastic movies, let alone animated ones, over the past year.

    In the grand scheme of things, movies are what we make of them, and no Oscar tells us otherwise. True Grit didn’t get best cinematography? Screw them, I thought it kicked ass anyway!

    • That’s how I look at Randy Newman’s oscar win as well… I din’t particularly think “We Belong Together” was that good of a song, and that Tangled’s “I See the Light” was much more deserving. But it can make up for the year’s when Randy had “You’ve got a friend in me” and “When She Loved Me”. Those were the songs that should’ve gotten him some awards, but they went up against “Colors of the Wind” and “You’ll be in My Heart”, some of the strongest songs from the Disney Renaissance.

      So, I’m just gonna look that win for his work on the whole trilogy, because for that, he’s extremely deserving.

  • wgan

    i thought every time they just randomly pick a best short out of some sort of stone scissor cloth

  • rbececa

    I’m really happy that the lost thing won. Am really supprised (but I know that I shouldn’t be) that the Australian media outlets paid little to no attention to this film being nominated. It seemed to me that every other Australian who was going to even be near the Oscar ceremony got a mention. In the acceptance speach for the award Mr Tan, named a lot of companies and alluded to some of the difficulties that I’m sure many Austalian animaters would have to put up with. I find it disapointing that this film didn’t receive as much attenetion as Nicole Kidman’s or Kate Blanchett’s horrible dresses.

  • Dognam H

    “The Illusionist” was a fantastic film. “How to Train Your Dragon” had much better character interaction than the overproduced Pixar film. The Academy have cemented their relevance as an anuual celebrity parade.

    • Marco

      Honestly, I’d have thought they had less relevance if they went with your HTTYD route. Who cares?

  • Blasko

    A friend of mine is a mime in an aging profession. He was deeply moved by The Illusionist and encouraged me to see it. After his third viewing he said, “I could talk about this film for hours.” Now, this isn’t the most important criterion for an Academy Award, but one wonders what kind of thought and reflection Toy Story 3 or HTTYD have generated. Ultimately, there just ain’t that much there in those two films for a mind to chew on.

    • James

      I like all three, but find TS3 the deepest of all three by far. If you can’t find many levels of meaning to chew on in TS3 then you really haven’t paid attention during it. There’s a reason people far and wide choke up and cry so deeply…myself included. It touches on the human experience more purely then any movie I have seen in a while.
      That said I do love the style of the Illusionist, but I think it ultimately fails for me because of the lack of dialogue. I love animation with no dialogue, but this story and the relationship would be dependent on at least some words between the too. To me it just feels awkward when it’s supposed to be moving and endearing. It really destroyed my empathy with the characters.
      Dragon was great fun and well done, but it’s more of a well-executed action movie then something dealing with levels of meaning…but it wasn’t supposed to be and I loved it.

  • Reading all these comments I can say human behaviour is pretty interesting. Pixar is considered the top notch in terms of animation (to many,anyway)and story telling but once it gets comfortable and settles down on its high perch people begin to get antsy and want numero uno knocked off and begin looking for another contender. It seems so constant in the arts . Music loves their indies bands but once they break big we want nothing to do with them and look else where!

  • jonathan Nix

    I’ll be returning to watch “The Illusionist” many times in the future. Like Triplets it reveals more layers with each subsequent viewing.

  • Pete

    It’s a scandal that Angry Man didn’t make the shortlist. But I suspect it is because it was two direct and confrontational as it deals with the taboo of an abusive father. It’s one of the most intense and effective animated shorts I’ve seen in a long time, and the art style together with the sound is really something. I’m sure there were many other worthy shorts on the list though, but I have to admit I haven’t even seen the Oscar winner. I’ve seen Day & Night though, and while the idea is clever enough, I don’t think the execution of that idea was particularly impressive. But it stays away from controversy, which makes it a safe pick for the Oscars list.

    That said, if we really want the animation medium to evolve, someone has to start taking some chances. In my eyes at least animation is a technique, not just a genre. One of the reasons why Pixar is so successful seem to be that they don’t have any big competition. Maybe if there were any any non-Pixar efforts that really could match the maturity of the Pixar storytelling, then maybe Pixar would start to take chances in other directions (including producing animated films that were primarily aimed at a mature audience

    • Chelsea

      “including producing animated films that were primarily aimed at a mature audience”

      This won’t happen anytime soon; by anytime soon I mean ‘as long as they’re owned by Disney’ which could mean forever. It’s not a lack of edginess or creativity that drives Pixar to make movies appropriate for all ages. It is because they started as a family entertainment company, and it is what they are and I’m pretty sure exactly what they want to be. If Pixar eventually wanted to get ‘more adult’ they would not have sold themselves to the mouse.

      And I’m not saying this is a good or bad thing, I’m just saying it is what it is. Pixar makes family movies. That doesn’t mean they can’t tell mature stories. It just means: Pixar makes family movies. And family movies can be just as great, innovative and mature as mature-audience films; just in different ways. I think and hope Pixar will continue to push the bar in /their/ own way.

      I don’t understand why so many people like to rag on Pixar for only being exactly what they have always been and said they would be. There was never any promise for mature-audience stories from them, and yet so many people reprimand them for not delivering something they never offered. It makes no sense.

      • Pete

        I think it makes perfect sense that people have opinions about what they would like to see. And I am also not saying that family movies CAN’T be innovative and push the bar. But I just don’t think Pixar is always as innovative as people give them credit for. Their movies can be pretty formulaic and unoriginal, and of course it is their ‘right’ to make that kind of fare if that’s what they really want to do. But the fact is that the studio has received 6 feature film Oscars since 2001, so I guess the audience has a ‘right’ to express their opinion. I think there’s simply not enough diversity in the medium to justify a Main Feature category. Pixar is the studio with the money and big budgets, so they are really the people who can make a difference. My point is just this: can’t they afford to experiment a little?

  • “maturity of the Pixar storytelling”

    So how is this scene “mature storytelling” exactly?


    It’s a straight up rip off of Wayne’s World.


    It’s cheesy and only mildly funny, but I bet Mom’s and dumb teenage girls love it….and yet this is actually a part of the animated film that won the Animated Feature Oscar and was nominated for Best Picture against truly courageous films like Winter’s Bone and Black Swan. Unbelievable.

    • James

      Norm : An one off gag that plays on the historical inanity of Barbie and Ken is not comparable to the overall themes and structure of the movie. Why not point to the scenes that deal with the Toys facing death or Andy having to leave behind his childhood or the mom having to say goodbye and Woody realizing the same? Those are deep and universal themes and ideas that are the heart of the story and the connection with audiences. The Black Swan was brilliant and my pic for best of the year, but TS3 also stands up there with it in a completely different way. They both will be remembered and watched (but by completely different audiences) for decades to come. We should applaud that.

  • Pete

    Norm: I agree with you. My point was really that there currently aren’t many feature animation studios that actually produce really innovative, thought provoking work. Alongside the standard fare that is put out, Pixar seems to be masters at what they do, but with some proper competition they might actually be challenged to do something really new.

    It’s just so frustrating that all the studios treat the medium as one single genre: the family friendly comedy. I like many of the things Pixar and others make, but the real problem I think is the lack of diversity, the lack of animated movies created across different genres. And I simply don’t buy the argument that adults wouldn’t go see an animated movie without bringing their kids along. It’s just a matter of changing the trend.

  • Pedro Nakama

    I liked “The Lost Thing” much better than “Toy Story 3.”

  • sigh

    I liked Day & Night until the end, when it simply lapsed into agitprop.