2020 Precursor Predictions: Annie Awards

And now it’s time for the best broadcast awards show that you probably aren’t watching. The Annie Awards honor the best in animation every year and being on Friday evening makes it easier for me to watch, which is good. Hopefully, they stream once again this year. (Editor’s Note: Tripp submitted a mostly complete list of predictions and commentary after posting. The below has been updated.)

ANNIE AWARDS

Best Animated Feature

The Croods: A New Age
Onward (RU:Wesley, RU:Peter, RU:Tripp)
Soul (Wesley, Peter, Tripp, Thomas)
Trolls World Tour
The Willoughbys (RU:Thomas)

Wesley Lovell: With Soul‘s biggest Oscar competitor nominated in the Independent section, there will be smooth sailing for Pixar’s season leader for the big award. Not even their other nominated feature, Onward, has much of a chance.
Peter J. Patrick: It’s likely the Annies will fall in line with everyone else and award its top animation prize to Soul with Onward its closest runner-up.
Tripp Burton: Soul is on a nearly unbeatable roll, and that shouldn’t stop here.
Thomas LaTourette: In the past decade, only two Pixar films have won this award, but it is difficult to imagine anything but Soul taking home the award. Neither The Croods nor the Trolls sequels feel like a winner. If they do not go for Pixar’s Soul, they definitely would not award their Onward. That leaves the odd The Willoughbys as the only other possibility. I just think Soul will win.

Best Animated Feature – Independent

Calamity Jane
On-Gaku: Our Sound
Ride Your Wave (RU:Thomas)
A Shaun the Sheep Movie: Farmageddon (RU:Wesley, RU:Peter, RU:Tripp)
Wolfwalkers (Wesley, Peter, Tripp, Thomas)

Wesley Lovell: With Soul nominated in the main category, the competition for Wolfwalkers is limited as there’s little doubt the Irish feature will win. Only fellow Oscar nominee Farmageddon really has a chance to upset and that’s extremely doubtful.
Peter J. Patrick: Here’s where the Annies get to honor the second-most acclaimed animated feature of the year, Wolfwalkers, with Farmageddon its closest runner-up.
Tripp Burton: This is between the two Oscar nominees, and I would lean towards Wolfwalkers as the critical darling of the year.
Thomas LaTourette: Wolfwalkers has a very distinct look, which should appeal to the voters. Only Farmageddon has had a wide release otherwise and it is probably too commercial to win this award. Wolfwalkers seems like it should win easily.

Best Animated Short Subject

Filles Bleues, Peur Blanche (Peter)
KKUM
The Places Where We Live (Cake) (RU:Wesley)
Souvenir Souvenir (RU:Tripp, RU:Thomas)
World of Tomorrow Episode Three: The Absent Destinations of David Prime (Wesley, Tripp, Thomas, RU:Peter)

Wesley Lovell: With none of this year’s Oscar-nominated short films on the list, it will be very difficult to predict. The only short I could imagine having a broad amount of support is World of Tomorrow Episode Three. The first episode was brilliant and that residual love may carry over here, but without having seen any of the other competitors, this is mostly a guess.
Peter J. Patrick: No commentary provided.
Tripp Burton: I have no idea with these, but the Don Hertzfeldt seems like a likely winner.
Thomas LaTourette: With none of the Oscar shorts here, I am just guessing about what might win as I know little about any of these films, though the sequel to World of Tomorrow could possibly follow it to the winner’s circle.

Best Animated Special Production

Baba Yaga
Libresse / Bodyform – #WombStories (RU:Thomas)
Nixie & Nimbo (RU:Wesley)
Shooom’s Odyssey (Peter)
The Snail and the Whale (Wesley, Thomas, RU:Peter)

Wesley Lovell: While the previous category enabled me to use a small measure of educated guessing, this category offers no such option. I have no idea how it will go, so I picked by title.
Peter J. Patrick: No commentary provided.
Tripp Burton: No predictions or commentary submitted.
Thomas LaTourette: No commentary provided.

Best Animated Effects

The Croods: A New Age
Over the Moon (RU:Peter, RU:Tripp, RU:Thomas)
Soul (Wesley, Peter, Tripp, Thomas)
Trolls World Tour (RU:Wesley)

Wesley Lovell: Soul should be sweeping all of its nominated categories this year. As for Animated Effects, I could imagine with Soul out of the way, Trolls World Tour would likely have the best chance of winning.
Peter J. Patrick: No commentary provided.
Tripp Burton: No commentary provided.
Thomas LaTourette: No commentary provided.

Best Character Animation, Animated Feature

The Croods: A New Age (RU:Wesley)
Onward
Soul (Wesley, Peter, Thomas, RU:Tripp)
The Willoughbys
Wolfwalkers (Tripp, RU:Peter, RU:Thomas)

Wesley Lovell: Soul wins again, but this is where films like The Croods: A New Age and Wolfwalkers might surprise with their unerring creativity. Of course, there’s a lot of old creations in The Croods, so it might not win…at least, it might not be runner-up to Soul.
Peter J. Patrick: No commentary provided.
Tripp Burton: No commentary provided.
Thomas LaTourette: No commentary provided.

Best Character Animation, Live Action

The Christmas Chronicles 2 (Peter)
The Mandalorian (Wesley, Thomas)
Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made
The Umbrella Academy (RU:Wesley, RU:Peter, RU:Thomas)

Wesley Lovell: With two TV shows in the competition, this isn’t much of a film-related category, but predict it I shall. The Mandalorian likely has the edge here. Disney should have a good night.
Peter J. Patrick: No commentary provided.
Tripp Burton: No predictions or commentary submitted.
Thomas LaTourette: No commentary provided.

Best Character Design

The Croods: A New Age
Soul (Wesley, Peter, Tripp, Thomas)
Trolls World Tour
The Willoughbys (RU:Thomas)
Wolfwalkers (RU:Wesley, RU:Peter, RU:Tripp)

Wesley Lovell: There’s a slight variance between Character Animation and Character design and while I am tempted to put The Croods as runner-up again, Wolfwalkers benefits most here from this category not being about the actual animation, but the pre-production work of character design.
Peter J. Patrick: No commentary provided.
Tripp Burton: No commentary provided.
Thomas LaTourette: No commentary provided.

Best Directing

Rémi Chayé – Calamity Jane
Pete Docter, Kemp Powers – Soul (Wesley, Peter, Thomas, RU:Tripp)
Glen Keane – Over the Moon
Tomm Moore, Ross Stewart – Wolfwalkers (Tripp, RU:Wesley, RU:Peter, RU:Thomas)
Masaaki Yuasa – Ride Your Wave

Wesley Lovell: This award usually goes to the Best Animated Feature winner and that winner will be Soul.
Peter J. Patrick: No commentary provided.
Tripp Burton: No commentary provided.
Thomas LaTourette: No commentary provided.

Best Music

Onward
Over the Moon (RU:Wesley, RU:Tripp, RU:Thomas)
Soul (Wesley, Peter, Tripp, Thomas)
The Willoughbys
Wolfwalkers (RU:Peter)

Wesley Lovell: The Oscar frontrunner for Original Score is sure to take this award, but not so fast. The Annies also have a storied history of going with off-the-wall choices here, so it might not.
Peter J. Patrick: No commentary provided.
Tripp Burton: No commentary provided.
Thomas LaTourette: No commentary provided.

Best Production Design

Onward
Soul (Wesley, Peter, Tripp, Thomas)
Trolls World Tour
The Willoughbys (RU:Thomas)
Wolfwalkers (RU:Wesley, RU:Peter, RU:Tripp)

Wesley Lovell: Soul will be predicted down the line. Annie voters do love a sweep.
Peter J. Patrick: No commentary provided.
Tripp Burton: No commentary provided.
Thomas LaTourette: No commentary provided.

Best Storyboarding

The Croods: A New Age
Earwig and the Witch (RU:Tripp)
Over the Moon
Soul (Wesley, Peter, Thomas)
Wolfwalkers (Tripp, RU:Wesley, RU:Peter, RU:Thomas)

Wesley Lovell: Soul for the win, but this is one of those categories where the end result isn’t as important as mapping out the story and while it often goes to the same film as the Best Animated Feature winner, sometimes they do go different directions.
Peter J. Patrick: No commentary provided.
Tripp Burton: No commentary provided.
Thomas LaTourette: No commentary provided.

Best Voice Acting

Nicolas Cage – The Croods: A New Age (RU:Wesley, RU:Thomas)
Robert G. Chiu – Over the Moon (Thomas)
Tom Holland – Onward (Tripp, RU:Peter)
Vanessa Marshall – Earwig and the Witch
Eva Whittaker – Wolfwalkers (Wesley, Peter, RU:Tripp)

Wesley Lovell: Once again, we have a category where the unusual can happen as Annie voters are more familiar with non-blockbuster names and have given their award accordingly in the past. That’s why you see no Soul nominee here. That leaves a big question as to what can fill the void. Nicolas Cage and Tom Holland are bigger names, but Wolfwalkers is incredibly popular and Eva Whittaker has won plenty of awards for her work, so that’s where I’m starting.
Peter J. Patrick: No commentary provided.
Tripp Burton: No commentary provided.
Thomas LaTourette: No commentary provided.

Best Writing

Onward (RU:Tripp, RU:Thomas)
Over the Moon
A Shaun the Sheep Movie: Farmageddon
Soul (Wesley, Peter, Tripp, Thomas)
Wolfwalkers (RU:Wesley, RU:Peter)

Wesley Lovell: Once again, Soul is in the race and it would be unwise to bet against it.
Peter J. Patrick: No commentary provided.
Tripp Burton: No commentary provided.
Thomas LaTourette: No commentary provided.

Best Editing

Calamity Jane
A Shaun the Sheep Movie: Farmageddon (RU:Tripp, RU:Thomas)
Onward (RU:Wesley, RU:Peter)
Soul (Wesley, Peter, Tripp, Thomas)
The Willoughbys

Wesley Lovell: And finally, we have a category where Soul is going to win…and by finally, I mean the last prediction for today, not that Soul will finally lose because it probably won’t.
Peter J. Patrick: No commentary provided.
Tripp Burton: No commentary provided.
Thomas LaTourette: No commentary provided.

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