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Awards Update: BAFTA, Critics Choice and Golden Reel Winners Announced

This past weekend was a huge one for the animation industry, with both ASIFA-Hollywood's Annie Awards and the British Animation Awards taking place. Animators were also celebrated as part of the wider entertainment industry in other awards ceremonies that took place on both sides of the pond.

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts returned to London's Royal Albert Hall for the annual BAFTA Film Awards BAFTA's Best Animated Film category was first awarded in 2006, during which time it has only been awarded to a film produced by a studio other than Disney or Pixar five times. 2022 wasn't going to change that as this year's award went to Walt Disney Animation Studios' Encanto. It had been nominated alongside Pixar's Luca, Sony's The Mitchells Vs The Machines and the independent feature Flee. The latter was also nominated in the documentary category, but it lost to music documentary Summer Of Soul.

BAFTA has had an animated short category for a lot longer, first awarding it in 1989 (To Nick Park's A Grand Day Out). Since 2013 the award has become Best British Short Animation, in a bid to recognise local talent. There was something of a surprise in this category this year, when Vladimir Krasilnikov, Jordi Morera and  Antonin Niclass's Don't Feed The Pigeon won. The favourite had been Affairs Of The Art from British indie animation legend Joanna Quinn and Les Mills. With several awards and an Oscar nomination in the bag, it had been presumed to be Quinn's year.

In the Special Visual Effects category, Denis Villeneuve's sci-fi epic Dune beat out competition from Free Guy, Ghostbusters: Afterlife, No Time To Die and The Matrix Resurrections. Disney's live-action 101 Dalmatians prequel Cruella won for Best Costume Design

Don't Feed The Pigeons

There has been much debate over the American Academy's decision to cut several awards categories from the live Oscars telecast this year. BAFTA has been way ahead of them here, and has been shunting several categories including both Animated Short and Animated Feature into an 'Awarded earlier' montage broadcast at the end of the 2-hour version that airs on BBC One.

Meanwhile, it was a different result at the Critics Choice Awards which also took place on March 13, In this case, the Best Animated Film award went to The Mitchells Vs The Machines. Once again, the VFX award went to Dune and Cruella picked up another gong for costumes

The Critics Choice Awards also include TV categories and Marvel Studios' first animated series What If..? was the surprise winner. It had been nominated against Bob's Burgers, Big Mouth,The Great North, pre-school series Bluey and (strangely enough) Netflix's Q-Force.

The Golden Reel awards are a lesser known ceremony, that recognises excellence in sound in film and television.  Animation winners were Love, Death + Robots (Outstanding Achievement in Sound Editing: Animation Series or Short), Arcane (Outstanding Achievement in Sound Editing: Non-Theatrical Animation) and  Raya And The Last Dragon (Outstanding Achievement in Sound Editing: Feature Animation).