When nominations for Best Animated Feature were announced this morning, we had to recheck the noms to make sure we heard right. “Kung Fu Panda 2,” “Puss in Boots,” “Rango,” “A Cat in Paris,” and “Chico & Rita.” Yes, Disney was left off the Oscar ballot for Best Animated Feature this year—not that this should come as any surprise. “Cars 2” wasn’t spectacular by any means — actually, it was pretty dreadful.
The film suffered from a ridiculous spy side plot a la James Bond and displayed an action sequence and explosions so over-the-top, one couldn’t help but wonder if Michael Bay was in the driver seat. These along with crude humour helped earn the film a 39% rating on movie reviewer Rotten Tomatoes and the title of first Pixar dud.
Sure there were a few shockers this morning—David Fincher didn’t get a directing nod for “Girl with the Dragon Tattoo,” Albert Brooks was robbed, and Jonah Hill received his first nomination—but, Disney, forget Cars, left off the Oscar bids is a big deal.
This marks the first time since the award’s creation in 2001 that Pixar/Disney was left out of the Oscar race for Best Animated Feature. The mouse powerhouse has taken home seven of the Academy’s 11 total awards. A nod and win this year, would have secured Disney five years in a row for Best Animated Feature. This year’s omission goes to show not even a big-name shoo-in is safe from being snubbed.
Even Steven Spielberg‘s “The Adventures of Tintin” — which Roger Ebert listed as one of the Best Films of 2011 — was also surprisingly left off the nominations list.
Let this be a lesson to Pixar who started going a little too sequel happy (“Toy Story,” the upcoming “Monsters Inc.” prequel, “Monsters University“) in the past few years. They should have taken a cue from DreamWorks.
Let’s hope “Brave,” “The Secret World of Arrietty,” or “Frankenweenie,” due out this year, will fare better at the box office and in the eyes of critics.