It’s a Disney kind of year at the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, with three of the five Golden Globe slots for best animated film awarded to Walt Disney Company films.
Two of the Disney nominees — Pixar’s Toy Story 4 and Walt Disney Animation Studios’s Frozen II — were expected, but the third nominee, The Lion King, is a total surprise because the Walt Disney Company had heretofore not acknowledged that it was an animated film. Did they have a change of heart? The answer is no.
According to sources with knowledge of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), we’ve learned that the Disney Company actually submitted The Lion King as a live-action film, however the HFPA disqualified it from the live-action categories. According to the organization’s rules (see PDF), “Animated motion pictures are not eligible for the Best Motion Picture – Drama, Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy, or Best Motion Picture – Foreign Language awards.”