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Animated Oscar Nominations Revealed; 'Frozen 2' Shut Out

Despite numerous controversies and an ongoing debate about their relevance in the modern age, there's still little doubt that The Oscars are still the highest profile awards out there. In terms of animation, while The Academy has a tendency to pick the latest Disney or Pixar film (last year's Spiderverse one of the rare exceptions) the nominations can at least give some major publicity to some lesser-known films.

Now that this year's nominees have been revealed, we finally know what films will be duking it out come the night of  February 9. And this year's nominations have provoked genuine surprise. There was widespread expectation that the category would be Frozen 2's to lose.  But following its shock loss at The Golden Globes, the Disney Sequel has been left out in the cold and not even been nominated- the biggest upset in the category since The LEGO Movie was shut out in 2015.

Of course, it's not a Disney free category, as Pixar have been nominated for Toy Story 4, which we would now have to assume is the frontrunner.  Outside of The Mouse House studios, Dean DeBlois makes it three for three, as How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World follows in the first two Dragons films' footsteps. Could this finally be his year?

Netflix has crashed the party in a big way, scoring two nominations for Spa Studio's ground-breaking 2D animation Klaus and Jeremy Clapin's unique adult feature I Lost My Body.  Stop-motion is represented by LAIKA's Missing Link.  This will be the studio's fifth nomination (out of five releases) but they have yet to win in the category. GKIDS Films have had a fantastic record of getting recognition for their films but unfortunately, this is the first year they have missed out since 2012.

Frozen 2 has had to settle for its nomination in the Best Original Song category, with Into The Unknown nominated alongside I Can't Let You Throw Yourself Away from Toy Story 4

In the shorts categories, Pixar's Sparkshorts program struck gold, with a nomination for the charming Kitbull. Following it being picked up by Sony Pictures Animation, the partially crowdfunded short Hair Love also got a  nod. The other nominees all come from international filmmakers and are Memorable from France, Dcera (Daughter) from Czechia and Sister from China.

The VFX nominations went to Avengers Endgame, The Lion King, 1917,  The Irishman and Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker.

This year's category has suddenly turned from one of the most predictable in years to one that has real potential for a surprise. The Toy Story franchise is widely beloved, and the sequel was largely well-received, so we'd have to predict its the heavy favourite. But the others would all be highly welcome winners. We'll find out for sure when the ceremony takes place in Hollywood on Sunday, February 9