Disney/Pixars THE INCREDIBLES is up for four Oscars in the list of nominees just released by The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for the 77th Annual Academy Awards, starting with Best Animated Feature, where it is pitted against DreamWorks SHREK 2 and SHARK TALE. Festival favorites in the Animated Shorts category are Chris Landreths RYAN (CFB), Sejong Parks BIRTHDAY BOY, Mike Gabriels LORENZO (Disney), Bill Plymptons GUARD DOG and Paul Jeff Fowlers GOPHER BROKE (Blur Studios).
Comicbook and fantasy pics lead the three-way race for Best Visual Effects between Sony Pictures SPIDER-MAN 2 (Sony Pictures Imageworks plus Zoic Studios, Radium Inc. and Barbed Wire); Warner Bros.s HARRY POTTER AND PRISONER OF AZKABAN (Industrial Light & Magic, with assist from London-based MPC, Framestore CFC, Cinesite (Europe) and Mill Film) and 20th Century Foxs I, ROBOT (Digital Domain plus Weta Digital, Rainmaker Digital Pictures, Pixel Magic and Modern Videofilm Inc.).
This marks the first time that the HARRY POTTER franchise has been nominated in the visual effects category, which means that ILM and the Soho studios are finally being recognized for their stellar work, including the diverse CG characters. Speaking of CG characters, Digital Domain is obviously being recognized for Sonny in I, ROBOT along with Wetas spectacular chase. And after being beaten by THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE TWO TOWERS, the SPIDER-MAN 2 team is now considered the favorite.
Individuals named for AZKABAN are Rogert Guyett, Tim Burke, John Richardson and Bill George; individuals named for SPIDER-MAN 2 are John Dykstra, Scott Stokdyk, Anthony LaMolinara and John Frazier and individuals named for I, ROBOT are John Nelson, Andrew Jones (the animation director bound for Imageworks), Erik Nash and Joe Letteri.
Brad Birds script for THE INCREDIBLES is up for Best Original Screenplay, competing against John Logan for THE AVIATOR; Charlie Kaufman, Michel Gondry and Pierre Bismuth for ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND; Keir Pearson and Terry George for HOTEL RWANDA and Mike Leigh for VERA DRAKE.
THE INCREDIBLES, THE POLAR EXPRESS (Skywalker Sound) and SPIDER-MAN 2 sound so good to Academy pros, they each garnered noms in the Sound Editing and Best Sound Mixing categories.
Also up for Best Sound Mixing are THE AVIATOR and RAY.
Animation is usually a strong contender in the Best Song category, and this year is no exception with the competition spread amongst SHREK 2 for "Accidentally In Love" and THE POLAR EXPRESS for Believe. The other nominees are THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA for Learn to be Lonely, THE CHORUS for Look to Your Path and THE MOTORCYCLE DIARIES for Al Otro Lado Del Rio.
The 77th Annual Academy Awards ceremony, hosted by Chris Rock, will be held on Feb. 27, 2005, at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood, and will be televised live on ABC starting at 5:00 pm PST. For a full list of nominees, go to /www.oscars.com/nominees/nominees.html.