While Pixar has been a force to be reckoned with in the Animated Feature category at the Oscars winning seven of its 10 bids, it has not been as strong in the Animated Short category, with only three victories: “Tin Toy” (1988), “Geri’s Game” (1997) and “For the Birds” (2001). But Pixar’s fortunes look like they might change this year with “Sanjay’s Super Team,” which is the overwhelming frontrunner to win.
Below, let’s take a look at the varied collection of films in contention for this year’s prize.
“Sanjay’s Super Team”
Young Sanjay loves watching TV and playing with his action figures but not engaging in daily Hindu prayers with his father. While this disappoints his father, Sanjay begins to imagine a new perspective of the religion that allows him to appreciate his faith.
Sanjay Patel and Nicole Grindle have earned their first Oscar nomination for this film.
Pros: The film is very sweet, tugs at the heart strings and will probably have the broadest appeal. Since it screened before “The Good Dinosaur,” this is one that most voters will be already familiar with.
Cons: The film could have gotten more into the issues of family and religion for a greater context.
Votes: 16 of our 27 Oscar Experts drawn from journalists who cover this beat year-round as well as five our seven in-house Editors, 16 of the Top 24 Users (those two dozen folks who did the best predicting last year’s winners) and 65% of all Users.
“World of Tomorrow”
A little girl named Emily is taken on a journey of the distant future by her third generation clone and is given an amazing insight into mankind’s fate.
This marks the second Oscar nomination for Don Hertzfeldt who was nominated in 2000 for “Rejected.”
Pros: It’s definitely the most ambitious in terms of its plot and blends several genres including comedy and science fiction. It makes a stark statement about memory and how we use it, plus the film earned a lot of press at Sundance last year where it won the Grand Jury Prize for Short Film. It might also be helped by the fact that it’s the only film with spoken dialogue.
Cons: The bizarre nature of the film could overpower the greater points that it makes for some voters.
Votes: 5 Experts, 2 Editors, 6 of the Top 24 Users and 25% of all Users.
An old bear takes a mechanical diorama to a street corner where he charges for other bears to look inside and see the story of a bear taken from his family to be in the circus and dreams of escaping and returning to his family.
This is the first Oscar nomination for Gabriel Osorio and Pato Escalo.
Pros: The film is very emotional and sad and the animation details for the mechanical diorama section of the film are incredible.
Cons: The unanswered question of what happened with the bear’s family is something that leaves the film feeling incomplete.
Votes: 6 Experts and 6% of all Users.
“We Can’t Live Without Cosmos”
Two best friends, who have dreamed of becoming cosmonauts since childhood, are excelling at a training facility to become the next cosmonaut.
This is the second Oscar nomination for Konstantin Bronzit who was nominated in 2008 for “Lavatory – Lovestory.”
Pros: The hand drawn animation style really stands out and there’s an emotional gut punch towards the middle that really hits hard.
Cons: I’m not really sure how to explain it but the resolution of the short feels weird.
Votes: 1 Top 24 Users and <1% of all Users.
Four warriors in Ancient Greece engage in a fight to the death that is witnessed by a little girl.
While this marks the first Oscar nomination for Imogen Sutton, it is the third for Richard Williams. He won this category in 1972 for “A Christmas Carol” and Visual Effects in 1988 for “Who Framed Roger Rabbit?” He also received a Special Achievement Award for his work on “Roger Rabbit.”
Pros: Not only is the animation style dazzling to look at but the way the perspective shifts around the characters is engrossing.
Cons: The plot feels like it’s going nowhere most of the time and then, out of nowhere, takes a drastic and disturbing turn.
Votes: 2% of all Users.
What do you think will win Best Animated Short at the Oscars? Make your predictions using the menu to the right or below.