With under two weeks to go until the 68th British Academy Film Awards, it’s time to take a look at the nominees for Best Animated Film and Best British Short Animation.
Best Animated Film Nominees
Big Hero 6 (Walt Disney Animation Studios)
- Directors: Don Hall, Chris Williams
- Starring: Jamie Chung, T. J. Miller and Maya Rudolph
- Robotics prodigy Hiro lives in the city of San Fransokyo. Besides his older brother, Tadashi, Hiro’s closest companion is Baymax, a robot whose sole purpose is to take care of people, but a devastating turn of events throws Hiro into the middle of a dangerous plot.
The Boxtrolls (LAIKA)
- Directors: Anthony Stacchi, Graham Annable
- Starring: Elle Fanning, Ben Kingsley, Nick Frost and Simon Pegg
- The Boxtrolls are a community of quirky, mischievous creatures who inhabit a cavern beneath the city of Cheesebridge but an adventure unfolds when villainous Archibald Snatcher hatches a plan to get rid of the harmless beings.
The LEGO Movie (Warner Bros. Pictures)
- Directors: Chris Miller and Phil Lord
- Starring: Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Banks, Will Ferrell and Liam Neeson
- Emmet, an ordinary LEGO figurine who always follows the rules, is mistakenly identified as ‘the Special’ – an extraordinary being capable of saving the world. He finds himself drafted into a fellowship of strangers who are on a mission to stop an evil tyrant.
It is surprising to see that How to Train Your Dragon 2 didn’t make the cut, especially since the first How to Train Your Dragon movie was nominated in 2010. But how great is it that The LEGO Movie is a nominee? Especially since it had been left out of Oscar nominations this year.
Like the Golden Globes, the BAFTA’s Best Animated Feature Award is a fairly new addition to the ceremony, having only been added in 2006. And because it’s so new they both seem to favor the fresher technology of CGI animated movies. The BAFTA’s past winners have all been CGI animated features, with Disney’s Frozen winning the previous year, so Big Hero 6 is in for a good chance.
This will be LAIKA’s third nomination for their third movie. Coraline and ParaNorman were previously nominated for a BAFTA but both lost to Pixar with Up and Brave. With more financial and promotional backing behind The Boxtrolls and with outstanding critical claim, could this be LAIKA’s year?
Best British Short Animation Nominees
Monkey Love Experiments
- Nominees: Ainslie Henderson, Cam Fraser and Will Anderson
- Inspired by love, a misguided monkey believes he is destined for the moon.
The Bigger Picture
- Nominees: Chris Hees, Daisy Jacobs and Jennifer Majka
- Tensions arise between two brothers as their elderly mother requires more care.
- Nominee: Marcus Armitage
- A Dad’s influence on a young boy’s life. His judgemental character mixed with the boys fondness for his dad prove to be a toxic mix that tears away at a world of opportunity and experiences.
All three short animated films are so different but all equally intriguing. Monkey Love Experiments is shown in a black-and-white tone that reminds us of stop-motion shows from the 1960s, a look you feel the short successfully achieves. Having already won the British Academy Scotland Awards, this is definitely a strong contestant.
Bigger Picture has really taken off in the animation short world. Creator Chris Hees believes the success is down to the story being something everyone can relate to since, “Most people know of older relatives who have struggled with health problems and the strain this can place on families.” Being the only short on the BAFTA nomination list to also be nominate for an Oscar, it gives us a strong hint to how high critics regard this nominee.
My Dad is the most British of the three, coming close to the ‘Brit-grit’ genre. With its raw, colorful and stark animation it certainly leaves an impression. The story of how a father’s influence can affect his son and his role in society is just the kind of powerful subject matter that the BAFTA’s tend to favor.
The BAFTA ceremony takes place February 8.
What do you think of the nominees? Who do you think will take home the BAFTA?
Edited by: Morgan Stradling