The smash Sing and the acclaimed Kubo and the Two Strings have their work cut out for them at this weekend’s 74th Golden Globes Awards ceremony, because here’s the thing: Disney rarely surrenders the animation crown.
The Golden Globes began honouring best animated feature film a decade ago, and since then, a Disney Animation or Disney/Pixar movie has taken home the trophy eight times. Pixar alone has won this category seven times, including last year’s Inside Out, and Disney Animation’s mega-hit Frozen won for 2013.
The only non-Disney winners have been Nickelodeon Movies/Amblin’s The Adventures of Tintin (2011), the Steven Spielberg-directed action adventure that featured cutting-edge motion-capture effects, and 2013’s How to Train Your Dragon 2, directed by former Disney talent Dean DeBlois and produced by DreamWorks Animation, which Spielberg co-founded.
So how does that all bode for this year?
Well, the most striking aspect is who’s not here: Pixar, so often a lock for a nomination, was shut out for 2016, as the sequel Finding Dory failed to get a nod.
Yet Disney Animation has two very strong nominees: Zootopia, which is one of only two animated films to top the $1 billion (Dh3.67 billion) mark this year and the visual spectacle that is Moana. Both films received mostly positive reviews.
So who’s got a shot to try to take down Disney?
The Oregon-based Laika scored its third nomination ever with the strikingly beautiful Kubo, and France’s Rhone-Alpes Studios received a nod for My Life As a Zucchini. Both films are critically acclaimed.
One catch here is both Kubo and Zucchini are stop-motion animation, so as gorgeously handcrafted as they may be, a Golden Globe win would be historic.
So that leaves Illumination Entertainment’s big hit Sing. Although the American Idol-with-animals is proving popular at the box office, reviews overall have been middling at best.
So barring a huge upset, every sign points to Disney winning the animation Globe yet again — with Moana’s lush marine beauty trying to take down the engaging, politically-laced story of Zootopia.
Either way, Alan Tudyk — who voiced characters in both those Disney films, as well as in the studio’s Rogue One — walks away a winner. And films featuring Matthew McConnaughey’s voice acting would be empty-handed as they hope next for an Oscar nod.