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PR: 35th Annie Awards Nominations Announced

BURBANK, CA (December 3, 2007) – The International Animated Film Society, ASIFA-Hollywood, announced nominations today for the 35th Annual Annie Awards recognizing the year’s best animation across film, television, commercials, video games and short subjects.

The Annie Awards, the industry’s oldest and most prestigious awards, are considered an important industry benchmark and an annual predictor of the Academy Award for Animation. The winner of the most coveted and high profile Best Animated Feature Annie has gone on to claim the Oscar for animation every year but one since its inception.

2007 was another prolific year for animation with a dozen animated features released theatrically. Winners will be announced at an awards ceremony on Friday, February 8, 2008 at UCLA’s Royce Hall, in Los Angeles, CA.

In the feature categories, Pixar Animation Studios’ “Ratatouille” leads the field this year with 13 nominations including Best Animated Feature as well as individual nominations for directing, writing, character animation, animated effects (two nominations), production design, storyboarding, character design, character animation, music and voice acting (three nominations). Sony Pictures Animation’s “Surf’s Up” follows with 10 feature nominations for feature, animated effects, animation production artists, character animation (two nominations), character design, and directing.

Rounding out the Best Animated Feature category are DreamWorks Animation’s “Bee Movie,” Sony Pictures Classics’ “Persepolis,” and Twentieth Century Fox’s “The Simpsons Movie.”

For television, Nickelodeon’s “El Tigre” leads the pack with four nominations for Best Animated Television Production for Children, and individual nominations for character animation, character design, and music. The Best Animated Television Production nominees this year are “Creative Comforts America” from Aardman Animations, “Jane and the Dragon” from Weta Productions Limited & Nelvana Limited, “Kim Possible” from Walt Disney Television Animation, as well as “Moral Orel” and “Robot Chicken Star Wars” from ShadowMachine.

For a complete listing of Annie Award nominations, log on to

www.annieawards.org

Special juried awards honoring lifetime achievement and exceptional contributions to animation will also be awarded:

WINSOR MCCAY AWARD WINNERS (career contributions to the art of animation)
John Canemaker
– Animation historian, educator, Oscar winning filmmaker. Canemaker’s tomes on Windsor McCay and Felix The Cat, his numerous books on Disney history (The Nine Old Men, Mary Blair, etc.) are esstential references. Canemaker is Chair of NYU’s Animation Program and won an Academy Award for his animated short The Moon And The Son: An Imagined Conversation.

Glen Keane
– One of the leading lights in the current generation of Disney character animators, Keane’s artistry has been the bedrock of many classic animated features since 1977. Most notably, Keane was lead animator of Ariel in The Little Mermaid, The Beast in Bauty and The Beast, and animated the characters Aladdin, Tarzan, Pocahontas in their respective Disney films. Aside from Disney he’s worked on animated films of Star Trek and Alvin and the Chipmunks.

John Kricfalusi
– Notorious animator Kricfalusi created the influential Ren & Stimpy Show in 1991. He restored an individual look to TV animation, pushing the envelope during the “creator-driven” movement of the 1990s. He also pioneered the use of artist-driven Flash animation. His animated films and design style currently influences a new generation of cartoonists, with which he communicates personally to through his blog.

JUNE FORAY (significant and benevolent or charitable impact on the art and industry of animation)

Jerry Beck

UB IWERKS (technical achievement)

Jonathan Gay, Gary Grossman and Robert Tatsumi – the creators of FLASH computer software

SPECIAL ACHIEVEMENT ANNIE AWARD
Edward R. Leonard – promoting the Linux open system for animation in animation studios and gaming software development

CERTIFICATE OF MERIT
Marcus Adams
Jo Jo Batista
Steve Gattuso
Jon Reeves
Gemma Ross
Woodbury University

The Annie Awards honor overall excellence as well as individual achievement in a total of 25 categories ranging from production design, character animation, and effects animation to storyboarding, writing, music and voice acting. Entries submitted for consideration were from productions that originally aired, were exhibited in an animation festival or commercially released between January 1, 2007 and December 31, 2007.

The 35th Annual Annie Awards will be held February 8, 2008 at UCLA’s Royce Hall, in Los Angeles, CA. The black-tie ceremony will feature a lively mix of animation luminaries, celebrity presenters and comedic talent to celebrate this year’s best of the best.

A pre-reception begins at 5:00 pm with the awards ceremony following at 7:00 pm. A post-show celebration immediately follows at the Royce Hall.

More than 1,500 entertainment industry insiders are expected to attend the annual Annie Awards. Tickets will be available to the general public online at
www.annieawards.org, after January 1, 2008, space permitting.

Sponsors to date for the 35th Annual Annie Awards: Cartoon Network, DreamWorks Animation, Imagi Animation Studios, Laika/house, Nickelodeon Animation Studio, Pixar Animation Studios, Sony Pictures Animation, Sony Pictures Imageworks, Starz Media, 20th Century Fox, Walt Disney Animation Studios and Walt Disney Television Animation.

For tickets, advertising, sponsorship and general information on the 35th Annual Annie Awards visit www.annieawards.org or contact ASIFA-Hollywood at 818-842-8330. Media inquiries contact Antran Manoogian at 818-625-3400 or antran.manoogian@sbcglobal.net.

Founded in 1972 by ASIFA member and veteran voice talent June Foray, the Annie Awards have grown in scope and stature for the past three decades. Today, ASIFA-Hollywood, the largest of an international network of chapters, supports a range of animation activities and preservation efforts through its membership. Current initiatives include the Animation Archive, Animation preservation, special events, classes and screenings.

ASIFA is the French acronym for L’Association Internationale du Film D’ Animation, an organization founded in 1957 in France by a group of professional animators and chartered by UNESCO in 1960 to encourage the art of animation and further international understanding and goodwill through the animation medium. Today, there are ASIFA chapters in nearly thirty countries worldwide.

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