GKids plans to distribute 4 Oscar-qualifying films

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Oscar Statuette, Academy Awards

Oscar Statuette, Academy Awards

New York-based animation distributor GKids announced Tuesday that it plans to give runs to four films in order to qualify them for this year’s Oscars.

Three of the four are French features: Zarafa (Pathe), Le Chat du Rabbin (The Rabbi’s Cat) (TF1) and Le Tableau (The Painting) (Rezo). The fourth is Kokurikozaka Kara (From Up on Poppy Hill), from Japan’s Studio Ghibli.

Last year, GKids distributed two Oscar-nominated features: Chico & Rita, from Spain’s Fernando Trueba and set in the milieau of Cuban jazz, and French spy tale Une Vie De Chat (A Cat In Paris).

The four new releases will raise the number of Oscar-qualifying films to 15, which means that the number of nominees for Best Animated Feature will automatically increase from three to four. If just one qualifying animated film is released, the number of Oscar nominees in the category will reach five.

Already, six studio films have received Oscar-qualifying runs: Universal’s Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax, Sony/Aardman’s The Pirates: Band of Misfits, DreamWorks Animation’s Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted, Disney/Pixar’s Brave, Blue Sky/20th Century Fox’s Ice Age: Continental Drift and Laika/Focus’ ParaNorman.

Scheduled for release later this year are Sony Pictures Animation’s Hotel Transylvania, Tim Burton’s stop-motion Frankenweenie and Rich Moore’s Wreck-It Ralph from Disney, and DWA’s William Joyce adaptation Rise of the Guardians.

A Liar’s Autobiography: The Untrue Story of Monty Python’s Graham Chapman, with contributions by over a dozen different animation studios, is also scheduled to receive a qualifying run.

The Oscars have had a Best Animated Feature category for 11 years. There has been a field of five nominees three times — twice in the last three years.

With this looking like the Oscar pack, do you have any favorites, or guesses as to which film will take it all this year at the Oscars???

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