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« From Russia With Link | Main | Skyfall (The Ultimate James Bond Fan Review) »
Friday
Nov092012

Animated Short Oscar Race ~ The Great Winnowing

The fifty-six wide list of Oscar semi-finalists previously announced has been narrowed down to just ten lucky films. Half of these (or less) will go on to win the insanely coveted title of "Oscar Nominee".

They are...

Adam and Dog (Minkyu Lee)
Combustible (Katsuhiro Otomo)
Dripped (Léo Verrier)
The Eagleman Stag (Mikey Please)
The Fall of the House of Usher (Raul Garcia)
Fresh Guacamole (PES) 
Head Over Heels (Timothy Reckart)
Maggie Simpson in 'The Longest Daycare' (David Silverman)
Paperman (John Kahrs)
Tram (Michaele Pavlátová) 

The list is notable for: the absence of Pixar, which usually has a showpony in this race, though Paperman represents for Disney; nudity since Tram is comically erotic and the Adam of Adam and Dog is the first man; the absence of any previous winners -- only Michaela Pavlátová has been Oscar nominated previously! It'll be a first time for anyone who wins and maybe for all who are nominated.  

You can see photos and read more about these on our Animated Predictions Chart. Reviews coming soon for the films we can get our hands on...

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Reader Comments (6)

so no fans of this category out there? Y'all disappoint me. So many of these films look interesting to me.

November 10, 2012 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

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November 10, 2012 | Unregistered Commenter3rtful

I'm a huge fan, but for some reason my comment never made it past the censors.

I have no problems with this list. The films I've seen were all very good in ways that take animation and storytelling to the limit, while the films I haven't seen look interesting in the same way. Sure, it is kind of sad that Don Hertzfeldt got the boot again, but what can you do? He just doesn't jive with the Oscar demographic.

Also the complete film for Dripped is available on YouTube. Hopefully that will help you in making your predictions.

November 10, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterajnrules

ajnrules -- there are no censors here. Just me. must have been a glitch :(

November 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNathaniel R

Paperman is fantastic. Better even than Wreck-It Ralph, which I thoroughly enjoyed. Fresh Guacamole seems like a waste of a choice. I know it's full of whimsy and wit, but it's basically a retread of Western Spaghetti. I also seriously doubt that they'd nominate a 90-sec piece with no moral and that used no new technology.

November 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEvan

Adam And Dog: Trailer: http://vimeo.com/34849443 This looks like a really well-made traditional drawn animation short, which is nice in a landscape that's mostly either 3D or super-experimental stop-motion/hand drawn. It's nice to see something more traditional but still obviously very well-animated. This won the Annie award for animated short, which isn't the best predictor of Oscar winners since it leans considerably more toward big studios, but this isn't a big-studio film and it could certainly get a nomination.

Combustible: (no clip) Directed by the famous Animé director Katsuhiro Otomo, of Akira fame, this certainly looks interesting but all I can find are two still frames, so it's hard to know much of anything about it! According to Cartoon Brew, the film's design is heavily influenced by traditional Japanese paintings and woodblock prints

Dripped: FULL FILM: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cOaOCZr4ftY This is maybe the closest to a surprise nomination, it didn't get a huge amount of advance buzz, and while it got into Annecy it didn't win anything there... but it's a great, fun film. I expect this to be one that gets chopped from the final five, but who knows? It's certainly very well animated, with a neat mix of stylized 3D and 2D [TREND ALERT]. Watch it!

The Eagleman Stag: FULL FILM: http://www.theeaglemanstag.com/ This is just a stunningly animated film. Make sure you watch both the film itself and the making-of. It's perhaps the most buzzed-about animated short film of the year: Just look at the list of awards at the link above! Sheesh! It's one of the most intricately made films I've ever seen. It's just so cool. Watch it!

The Fall of the House of Usher: Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5So_E6yPW40 This is the only fully 3D film on the shortlist this year, and honestly, from what's above, it doesn't look so great, at least to me. I'm certainly a bit biased against 3D, but do we really need another film with the same angular independant-3D style? I don't know, maybe it's great, but it looks like the least-interesting film on the shortlist.

Fresh Guacamole: FULL FILM: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FQMO6vjmkyI If Fresh Guacamole wins the Oscar, it will be the shortest film ever to do so. In any category. I wouldn't put that past it. Despite being only a minute and a half long, this film is just perfect in pretty much every way. I honestly think I've watched it more times than any other animated short. Everything, from the appetizing sound design to the smoothness of the animation, is just perfect. Go PES! Watch it!

Head Over Heels: Trailer: http://vimeo.com/37604847 Jeez, this looks cool. I don't know anything about it other than that trailer, but man, it just seems like a great idea, well-animated, and it's certainly something to look for.

The Longest Daycare: Low-quality camcorder of the full film: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sE6FJgHXJaM Meh. Do we really need this? With all the awesome independent animation out there, does one of the Oscar slots really need to go to a mediocre Simpsons short that screened before Ice Age? It's no different than a five-minute version of a Simpsons episode, except in that there's no dialogue and it's [TREND ALERT] made partially in 3D and partially in 2D. There's nothing new or pioneering about it, and it's not even all that funny.

Paperman: Making-of: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OKl9mpGMCiA If there's one big-studio, big-budget, half-2D half-3D [TREEEEEEND ALERT] short to get into the oscars, let this be it. In plot, this is basically just the classic boy-meets-girl, animated tricks and effects ensue of most Pixar shorts (Although TECHNICALLY this wasn't made by Pixar, yeah yeah alriight). But the animation here is just really really pretty and cool. Wreck-It Ralph is the best big-budget 3D animated film in a while, and this short (which plays before it) is very good too.

Tram: Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1kkRWC4yp8M This doesn't look like anything special at first, the youtube video has ".mp3" at the end of its title and there's not much written about it online... and yet, if I were to pick an early frontrunner for the Oscar, this would be it. Because it won the Crystal at the Annecy animated film festival. More and more, the Annecys have been influencing the animation Oscars: Three of the last five Oscar winners for animated short won the Annecy Cristal, and the other two winners didn't make the shortlist. Tram's win means that it gets a HUGE advantage against the other winners right from the get-go.

SUPPORT INDEPENDENT ANIMATION! woo

November 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSamECircle

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