Disney Dominate The 44th Annie Awards

Walt Disney Animation Studios’ Zootopia takes the top honor as Best Animated Feature at the 44th Annual Annie Awards, which took place on Saturday evening at UCLA’s Royce Hall. Disney also picked up other awards for Moana, The Jungle Book, Doctor Strange, Piper and the Mickey Mouse Shorts.

Zootopia also received an Annies trophy for

  • Outstanding Storyboarding – Dean Wellins;
  • Outstanding Character Design – Cory Loftis;
  • Outstanding Voice Acting – Jason Bateman as Nick Wilde;
  • Outstanding Writing –  Jared Bush & Phil Johnston;
  • Best Directing – Byron Howard & Rich Moore.

Other Disney winners included:

Best Animated Short Subject:

  • Piper (Pixar Animation Studios);

Outstanding Achievement for Character Animation in a Live Action Production:

  • The Jungle Book (Walt Disney Pictures).

Outstanding Achievement, Animated Effects in an Animated Production

  • Moana

Outstanding Achievement, Animated Effects in a Live Action Production

  • Dr. Strange

Outstanding Achievement, Voice Acting in an Animated Feature Production—TIE

  • Moana – Walt Disney Animation Studios- Voice Actress: Auli’i Cravalho Character: Moana
  • Zootopia – Walt Disney Animation Studios – Voice Actor: Jason Bateman

Outstanding Achievement, Editorial in an Animated TV/Broadcast Production

  • Disney Mickey Mouse – Episode: Sock Burglar

“It was a big year for animation all around. We saw a huge number of projects, great diversity  of subjects and styles and increasing international participation,” remarked Frank Gladstone,  Annie Awards executive producer. “Animation’s positive impact on communities world-wide was  evident throughout the evening. It was a great night.”

Presenting the coveted Annie trophies this year were Lakers basketball legend, Kobe Bryant; actress  Jenna Elfman; animator and film director, Patrick Osborne; Auli’l Cravalho – voice of Moana; animator, author and illustrator, Glen Keane; actor and comedian, Tom Kenny; Paige O’Hara – 25th Anniversary of Beauty and the Beast; actor & director, James Hong; directors Travis Knight – Kubo and the Two Strings and Michael Dudok de Wit – The Red Turtle; comedian Stephen Kramer Glickman and actress Chelsea Kane, along with ASIFA-Hollywood President, Jerry Beck and Executive Director, Frank Gladstone.

ASIFA-Hollywood was thrilled to have all three Winsor McCay recipients in attendance. The  Winsor McCay recipients this year are legendary animator Dale Baer; independent animation champion Caroline Leaf; and influential anime director Mamoru Oshii for career contributions to the art form. The Ub Iwerks Award was presented to Google Spotlight’s Virtual Reality Platform for technical advancement; and the Specia Achievement Award was presented to Life, Animated, a documentary about animation’s effect on one young   autistic man’s journey.

The June Foray Award was presented to Bill & Sue Kroyer for their career-long benevolent and public-spirited influence within the animation community. Certificate of Merit awards were   presented to Leslie Ezeh, ASIFA-Hollywood volunteer coordinator and Gary Perkovac, ASIFA-Hollywood’s office manager.

The Annie Awards honor overall excellence as well as individual achievement in a total of 36 categories from best feature, best feature – independent, production design, character animation, and effects animation to storyboarding, writing, music, editing and voice acting, and have often been a predictor of the annual Academy    Award for Best Animated Feature.

The ceremony was live-streamed again this year at www.annieawards.org/watchit-live where animation enthusiasts and those unable to attend the event, could watch the show. A complete list of winners can be viewed at www.annieawards.org and highlights of the ceremony will be uploaded to the Annies website in the next few weeks.


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