Awards season is in full swing already. The Golden Globes have already passed, and the Academy will be handing out those little statues in early March. There's already been some buzz about the Oscars this year, but as usual it's covered in controversy. Concern has arisen over recent rule changes surrounding the nomination of animated films. In the past, the Academy had a specific branch dedicated to selecting animated films for nomination, and then the entire Academy's membership voted on the winner. Now however, the entire Academy will be eligible to nominate the Best Animated Feature film, in the same way that the Best Picture is nominated.
There had been concerns that this would exclude indie animated features from consideration. The idea of having a specific branch nominate in each category is that it allows experts to select the best work for consideration. That is, it allows people who understand the technical aspects behind the animation processes to choose what should be presented for judgement. Opening nominations up to the entire Academy is risky, especially given allegations that voters merely select winners based on what their kids liked. Now that the actual nominees have been selected though, those features have been allayed... mostly.
The big frontrunner of course is Pixar's Coco, which is a given. We also saw some smaller productions make it too, which is a good sign! We've got Loving Vincent, and The Breadwinner. The inclusion of these smaller titles has bolstered many hopes in the Academy's fairness and scope. However, eyebrows have already been raised at the other two nominations: The Boss Baby and Ferdinand. The Internet has exploded especially over the former, which came as a surprise given the critical and audience feedback.
Ultimately though, it seems to be par for the course. We've got the Disney/Pixar nomination, we have our indie titles, and we have some popular films up for the running. The shift in rules seems to have had little effect, at least this year. And perhaps, now that everyone has the responsibility to nominate animated films, more members of the Academy will give them a fair shake?
Well, in any case we have the Annie Awards on February 3.
We're lucky enough to work with the talented writer and director, Jared White! Jared has been working as an editor on Bink as well as writing and storyboarding for other projects we're working on!
Jared was born and raised in the San Fernando Valley and was always passionate about filmmaking. In addition to making home movies when he was younger, Jared would make his own animated stop-motion films! Although animation was always a love of his, he ended up going down the path of live-action films. After graduating from Cal State Northridge with a degree in Film Production he started working at Panavision. Jared was a workflow consultant on major feature films like Ted, Smurfs, Captain America, and more! Since Jared was so familiar with the equipment, he began making his own independent films on the side.
Eventually, Jared decided to go out on his own and started working as a freelance writer and director. Two years ago, he decided to start his own production company, Squared Pictures. Jared has had the opportunity to work on various web series and work with reputable companies like College Humor and Funny or Die. His short films have been featured in festivals in the U.S. and internationally, and he recently won an award at the 48 Hour Film Project.
It was so exciting for Jared to be able to return to animation once again when he started working with Eric Miller Animation. He enjoys keeping up with animation news and watching animated films in his free time.
When Jared's not working, he enjoys traveling with his wife. Recent travels include Europe and Costa Rica, and they're currently planning a trip to Japan.
Want to learn more about Jared and his production company? Check them out at www.squaredpictures.com!