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Disney Rolls Out Wall-E for Oscar Best Picture Consideration

After the amazing reviews and copious amounts of praise it received, this should come as a surprise to no one; but Disney has reportedly decided to push for an Oscar Nomination for Pixar’s WALL-E in both the Best Picture and Best Animated Film categories. Back in 1991 Beauty & The Beast was nominated for a Best Picture Academy Award and was the main impetus behind the creation of the Best Animated Film category in the following season.

“Wall-E,” from Disney’s Pixar unit, emerged as a darling of the critics for its adult sensibility, in addition to its heavily detailed computer animation. The film, the story of a lovesick robot, tackles a serious topic (environmentalism) while taking huge risks (for instance, a 45-minute stretch with nearly no dialogue).

“If we didn’t do it, I don’t think we’d be giving the movie its due,” Richard Cook, chairman of Walt Disney Studios, said of the decision to promote “Wall-E” for the top prize, even if that complicates the movie’s simultaneous bid for the more easily won award as best animated feature. One problem is a presumed tendency to split votes. Academy members can vote for a film in both the best picture and best animated feature categories. But they may not be inclined to do that or even know that the rules permit it.

That last bit scares me. But I trust Disney has the time to educate voters. What do you think? Does WALL-E stand a chance to win both? Or will this hurt its chances this year?

(Via the NY Times)

10 thoughts on “Disney Rolls Out Wall-E for Oscar Best Picture Consideration”

  1. I used to work in film publicity and a large part of my job was working on Oscar campaigns. I think the problem with submitting Wall-E for both (as they did with Ratatouille) is not that voters need to be educated (believe me, they know the rules) but that there is this mentality of “we’ll give it Best Animated Feature and give something else Best Picture.” The same thinking applies to Best Foriegn Film/Best Picture – even though foreign films have been nominated for Best Picture in the past, they hardly ever win.

    The other problem is that Academy campaigns are won and lost based on how much schmoozing the film’s talent does with the AMPAS members. Since Wall-E is animated, it doesn’t have the advantage of having Angelina Jolie or Leonardo DiCaprio promote the film.

    Personally, I think Wall-E deserves to win both categories – it’s a riskier, genre-redefining movie that speaks to all audiences and carries a great message – and we’re not likely to see anything better this year. But I can’t say I’ll bet my Oscar pool on it.

  2. I wanted to clearify a little. It was said that “Beauty and the Beast” was nominated for Best Picture for 1991 and the Best Animated Film Award was created the following season. While Beauty was definitely the springboard, the award was not created for a decade later. The first picture to win the award was “Shrek” in 2001, beating out “Monsters, Inc.”

  3. Before we talk about “Wall-E” winning in either category, we need to see if it gets nominated first. The movie is a sure thing for a nomination in the best animated feature category (probably to win it, too), but it’s a long-shot for any animated film to get nominated for best picture. If “Wall-E” does get a nomination for best picture, it would have an incredibly slim chance at winning in the catgory (deserving or not).

  4. WALL-E definatly deserves a shot at the best picture award, and I think there is a better chance because it has a powerful message, just as Beauty and the Beast did way back when.

    I just wish I would have confidence in the committie to at least think of Stanton for Best Director, he absolutley deserves it.

    I also think it is time for the Academy to consider an award for best Voice Preformance in an Animated Film. I’m not saying WALL-E would win it, as the voice acting was minimal, but there were some over the years that have deserved an award.

    Oh, and Fred Willard for Best Supporting Actor ;)

  5. And in response to “What will be different about this year” comments. Its something I call Powerfulbility- The ability to be considered a powerful film.

    Lets take The Incredibles and Ratatouille for example. Both of those films are great, but I think to message that the film provides does not have enough powerfulbitlity to be considered as a best picture film

    Now let us take a look at Beauty and The Beast. The Powerfulbility of that film is off the charts. In fact, I don’t think an animated film since has come close to the Powerfulbilities of BatB (With the possible exception of The Lion King, depending on how you look at the film.) Until WALL-E, that is.

    Only time will tell if WALL-E’s Powerfulbility level will surpass that of BatB’s, but I think it is about equal, and in this weaker year in films, I think it is the prime shot to make a run for Best Picture.

  6. And a final question: What is WALL-E up against to get the nomination at least? I know Dark Knight will probably be nominated, I’ve heard Iron Man is a possibility, but other than that, I haven’t really heard other possibilities.

    1. I wouldn’t expect Iron Man to get nominated. Dark Knight, yes. Iron Man, no. Most Oscar nominated movies aren’t big budget, heavily advertised, blockbuster popcorn flicks. They will probably nominate a few movies some of us barely remember and most of them come out closer to Oscar time rather than later.

  7. Does it deserve the nod? Of course it does. It probably deserves to win as well, as did Beauty and the Beast which was the best of the films nominated that year.

    But just as BatB got snubbed, just as “popular” films often get overlooked for something more “artistic” so will Wall-E be snubbed because it would be a “blight” on their snobby little game.

    I’m sorry, this annoys me, as many excellent films get overlooked, many deserving films, all because of some bizarre unwritten “rules” and traditions.

  8. I hope WALL-E ends up on the Best Picture Nod. If it doesn’t, I will not watch the oscars.

    WALL-E costed 180,000,000 to make, as much as the Dark Knight. So many people worked hard on it. Ben Burtt did amazing voice design, Stanton wrote a daring script, the computer graphics were realistic (with the exception of the humans), Newman did a beautiful themed score (WHY DID HE NOT GET A NOD FOR BEST MUSIC AT THE ANNIES?!), etc.,etc.

    WALL-E is not one of the bloated romance films like the overrated Titanic. Titanic did nothing but circled around Jack and Rose romance. There were many things going on beside WALL-E’s and EVE’s. There was a lethargic society, a polluted Earth, and machines making discoveries.

    WALL-E is certainly better than Kung Fu Panda. Kung Fu Panda only took 130 million to make. Kung Fu Panda is certainly funnier, but comedy can never define a good movie. Kung Fu Panda had a excellent storyline, but it is what it is, it was meant to make children laugh and enjoy it. Kung Fu Panda is not of the universal. Young children will love the cuteness of WALL-E, and teens and adults will love the allegorical story.

    Dreamworks may be funnier, but Pixar suceeds in mixing comedy with creative storytelling. Storylines matter more than comedy.

    If you think comedy defines how good a movie is, you are one of those inconsiderate people who give no damn toward the hard effort.

    WALL-E is no animated movie, it’s a romance made by animation. Saying that WALL-E is an animated movie is discriminating.

    If WALL-E doesn’t show up on the Best Picture category, I will never watch the Oscars again. Mark my words.

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