The César Awards, France’s highest film honor, have announced the shortlist of 12 French films that are in contention for its 2016 award for best animated short.

Four nominees will be announced on January 27, followed by the winner who’ll be announced at the César ceremony on February 26, 2016.

One of the key themes of Cartoon Brew is highlighting the breadth and diversity of animation from around the globe, and the César shortlist illustrates the point well. The organization that presents the award — Académie des Arts et Techniques du Cinéma — selected twelve quality films, only one of which qualified for the Oscars this year.

As much as we talk about the Oscars and Annies, the Césars remind us of the impracticality of any single awards organization or film festival judging the output of the entire animation community. Yet, each of these events is valid in that they help audiences discover new work that might otherwise go unrecognized, and their collective efforts enrich us all.

Below are the films that have been shortlisted for the César. Tellingly, ten of the the films are longer than 12 minutes; the French treat the short-form format as a platform for serious storytelling and are unafraid to tell more complex stories than typically expected from animated shorts. When possible, we have included either the trailer or the entire film itself:

  • Le C.O.D. et le Coquelicot
    Directed by Jeanne Paturle and Cécile Rousset
    Production: Les Films d’Ici, XBO Films (24 minutes)cod-et-coquelicot
  • Carapace
    Directed by Flora Molinié
    Production: Dark Prince (16 minutes)
  • La Chair de ma chère
    Directed by Calvin Antoine Blandin
    Production: Je Suis Bien Content (13 minutes)
  • Chez Moi
    Directed by Phuong Mai Nguyen
    Production: Papy3D Productions (12 minutes)
  • Chulyen, Histoire de Corbeau
    Directed by Cerise Lopez and Agnès Patron
    Production: Ikki Films (20 minutes)
  • Dans les Eaux Profondes
    Directed by Sarah van den Boom
    Production: Papy3D Productions (12 minutes)
  • Leftover
    Directed by Tibor Banockzi and Sarolta Szabo
    Production: Paprika Films (14 minutes)
  • La nuit américaine d’Angélique
    Directed by Pierre-Emmanuel Lyet and Joris Clerté
    Production: Senso Films (7 minutes)
  • Le repas dominical
    Directed by Céline Devaux
    Production: Sacrebleu Productions (14 minutes)
  • Smart Monkey
    Directed by Winshluss and Nicolas Pawlowski
    Production: Je Suis Bien Content (18 minutes)smartmonkey
  • Sous tes doigts
    Directed by Marie-Christine Courtès
    Production: Vivement Lundi!, Novanima Productions (13 minutes)
  • Tigres à la queue leu leu
    Directed by Benoît Chieux
    Production: Les Films de l’Arlequin (8 minutes)
  • (Images in header from “Tigres à la queue leu leu” and “Carapace.”)

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