‘The Lion King’ Will Not Compete for Best Animated Feature Oscar

     October 16, 2019

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences revealed today the 32 films that have been submitted for consideration in the Best Animated Feature Oscar category, and Disney’s The Lion King is not among them. Since the film hit theaters and dominated the box office earlier this year, debate raged on whether it’s actually a “live-action remake” as it was marketed, or if it’s an animated film. In truth there’s only one live-action shot in the whole movie, while the rest was created using cutting-edge visual effects to craft photoreal versions of the characters. So yes, the characters are CG, but they’re not presented as “animated” characters in the traditional sense.

Indeed, Disney opted not to submit The Lion King for Best Animated Feature consideration, so it will not be presented as such. It is, however, expected to be a major player in the Best Visual Effects race.


Image via Disney

Among the films that are vying for the Best Animated Feature Oscar, we have Disney’s upcoming Frozen II and Pixar’s Toy Story 4, DreamWorks Animation’s How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World and Abominable, Warner Bros.’ The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part (a film that, I assure you, did actually come out this year), and Illumination Entertainment’s The Secret Life of Pets 2. LAIKA’s Missing Link is also competing, and Netflix is entering the race with the upcoming holiday film Klaus and the indie I Lost My Body.

Also of note, acclaimed filmmaker Genndy Tartakovsky’s Primal – Tales of Savagery is being submitted as a film, despite airing in chunks on Adult Swim.

Notably absent from the list is Aardman Animations’ A Shaun the Sheep Movie: Farmageddon, which hits domestic theaters in December. It’s unclear why it was not submitted.

As for who the frontrunner is, traditionally a Disney or Pixar film wins this category (more often Disney than Pixar in recent years), so the safe bets are on either Toy Story 4 or, if it has the goods, Frozen II. We’ll find out when the Oscars take place on February 9, 2020. Nominations will be announced on January 13, 2020.


Image via Disney/Pixar

Check out the list of animated films submitted for consideration below, and click here for my current Best Picture predictions.

The Addams Family
The Angry Birds Movie 2
Another Day of Life
Buñuel in the Labyrinth of the Turtles
Children of the Sea
Dilili in Paris
Frozen II
Genndy Tartakovsky’s ‘Primal’ – Tales of Savagery
How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World
I Lost My Body
The Last Fiction
The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
Marona’s Fantastic Tale
Missing Link
Ne Zha
Okko’s Inn
The Secret Life of Pets 2
Spies in Disguise
The Swallows of Kabul
This Magnificent Cake!
The Tower
Toy Story 4
Upin & Ipin: The Lone Gibbon Kris
Weathering with You
White Snake

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