Date: 2019 January 26 21:14
Posted by Joe
Mamoru Hosoda's latest movie Mirai has been nominated for an Oscar for Animated Feature Film. It made the the list of final nominees which also includes Incredibles 2, Isle of Dogs, Ralph Breaks the Internet and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.
Mirai's nomination is significant as it's the first anime film to be nominated that isn't from Studio Ghibli. Hayao Miyazaki's Spirited Away was nominated in 2002 and won the Oscar, being to date the only animated movie from Japan to win the prize.
Studio Ghibli features have been nominated 4 other times (5 times if you include the Ghibli produced and European animated The Red Turtle). Howl's Moving Castle was nominated in 2005 and Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit won. While in 2013 The Wind Rises was nominated and was eclipsed by Frozen. In 2014 The Tale of the Princess Kaguya was in the running and Big Hero 6 won. Before this year 2015 was the last time an anime movie was nominated in the form of When Marnie Was There, which lost out to Pixar's Inside Out.
We think it's fantastic that's Mirai is nominated, but looking at the track record for anime, we don't think it'll win. Part of this is down to how the Oscar winners selection works. The body that runs the Oscars The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences consists of around 7,000 filmmakers and film professionals, and these are the people that vote for the Oscars. Of these 7,000 professionals most of them are not animation fans and see it as a kids category, some will just vote Disney / Pixar without seeing any of the films, some will just let their kids watch the movies and ask which to vote for, from what we've heard too a few don't quite know what they're voting for. Many also chose not to cast a vote and abstain.
Looking at various betting sites Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse appears to be the bookies favourite. Mirai appears to be the least likely to win according to people who like to bet money. Not that this can actually predict the future. Personally we think Incredibles 2 has a good chance of wining too.
Although we doubt Mirai will win, we're still rooting for it as it truly is a fantastic film that we believe will stand the test of time. It's a rare instant classic that will age well. It's also got fantastic rewatch value, if you watch it as a child you'll see one thing, but as a parent the viewing experience will be totally different as you'll appreciate completely different things. If you want to know more you should read our review of Mirai.
However there is hope, we're reminded when you buy and sell investments the phrase "past performance is not an indicator of future outcomes" is often quoted. This can also be applied to many things in life including the Oscars.