Tomorrow, the shortlist of animated shorts competing for next year’s Oscar will be unveiled. It will be our first insight into the Academy’s tastes this year. In anticipation, we’ve tried to guess what they’ll pick.
Predicting this category is a pretty inexact science, as it gets relatively little attention, and the shortlist isn’t preceded by a steady run of buzz-building awards as feature categories are. There’s a reason bookies don’t take bets on shorts at this stage.
With that in mind, we’ve gone ahead and picked the films we think stand the best chance of being shortlisted (out of the 84 that qualified). Our choices are based on factors like the film’s exposure so far (whether through marketing or festival hype and honors) and the prominence in Hollywood of the studio and director. The Academy’s voting record suggests these things are important. Quality is a factor here, but perhaps not the most important one, and in any case it is more subjective than others.