In the world of movies, there’s a big buzz about who might win the top prize at the Oscars this year. The focus is on animated films, and two giants are in the running: “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse” and Hayao Miyazaki’s latest creation. Let’s dive into the excitement and understand why these animated movies are causing such a stir.
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Setting the Stage for Animated Glory
Back in 2002, the Academy Awards decided that animated movies deserved their own category. At that time, DreamWorks’ “Shrek” was the first to take home the animated Oscar. But things have changed since then. More studios, like Sony and Netflix, have joined the race, and now we have a bunch of animated movies that can stand tall with Disney and Pixar.
While Disney and Pixar have been the kings of animated nominations and wins, getting a nod for Best Picture has been a rare achievement for animated features. This year, however, things might be different. Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, the sequel to the 2019 Oscar-winning animated feature, is making headlines not just for its cool animation but also for its success at the box office.
The Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse‘s Rise to Glory
Directed by Kemp Powers, who also helped write Disney/Pixar’s Oscar-nominated “Soul,” this Spidey flick is not just any animated movie. It’s part of a beloved franchise, with a stellar cast including Oscar nominees Brian Tyree Henry and Hailee Steinfeld, Oscar hopeful Greta Lee, and Oscar winners Mahershala Ali and Daniel Kaluuya.
Apart from its impressive reviews, Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse has secured a spot on AFI’s list of the year’s top 10 films, standing alongside live-action heavyweights like “Barbie,” “Killers of the Flower Moon,” and “Oppenheimer.” It’s not just an animated movie; it’s a contender in a league of its own.
Facing the Miyazaki Challenge
However, standing in the way of Spider-Man’s glory is none other than the legendary Hayao Miyazaki. His latest work, The Boy and the Heron, has stormed the North American box office, proving the enduring power of Studio Ghibli and Miyazaki’s storytelling. At 82 years old, Miyazaki claims this is his final film, adding even more weight to the competition.
The race for Best Picture is not just about Spider-Man swinging through dimensions; it’s about Miyazaki’s animated prowess making a final stand. The Academy has a chance to honor this animation maestro once again with an Oscar or even make history by nominating an animated film for Best Picture.
Challenges and Predictions
Looking at predictions, other films like “American Fiction,” “Barbie,” and “Killers of the Flower Moon” are expected to grab Best Picture nominations. However, Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse is not far behind, currently sitting in 17th place but steadily gaining ground.
The sequel, picking up more than a year after the first film, follows Miles Morales and Gwen Stacy on a mission to save every universe of Spider-People. It’s not just the storyline that’s catching attention; it’s the breathtaking visuals, multiple animation styles, and the promise of a compelling narrative.
Critics and Accolades
Critics are loving it too! Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse has a 95% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with reviewers comparing it to iconic sequels like “The Dark Knight” and “The Empire Strikes Back.” Brian Tallerico of RogerEbert.com calls it “a smart, thrilling piece of work.”
Yet, animated movies face a historical challenge to secure a Best Picture nomination. Only three animated films have achieved this feat before. With a guaranteed 10-nominee lineup now, animated movies theoretically have a better chance, but they still need critical acclaim or blockbuster status.
Anticipation Builds for the Oscars
So, as we gear up for the Oscars, the big question is whether we’ll see not just one but two animated contenders in the Best Picture race. Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse and Hayao Miyazaki’s The Boy and the Heron are gearing up for a showdown that could redefine the place of animation in the world of Best Picture at the Oscars. The stage is set, the contenders are ready—let the animated battle begin!