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‘Nimona’ Leads Annie Awards Animated Feature Competition With Nine Noms; Snubs Include ‘Wish,’ Which Was Shut Out

By Carolyn Giardina

January 11, 2024

In a competitive year in animation, Nimona, based on the graphic novel by ND Stevenson, leads the 51st Annie Awards feature competition with nine nominations includes best feature, direction and writing.

In the top category for best feature, the International Animated Film Society ASIFA-Hollywood — which hands out the annual animation prizes — also nominated Hayao Miyazaki’s The Boy and the Heron, Sony Pictures Animation’s Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse and Makoto Shinkai’s Suzume, which earned seven nominations apiece; and Paramount and Nickelodeon’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem, which collected six nominations. Pixar’s Elemental also earned a total of six nominations, though it was snubbed in the top category.

Nimona, The Boy and the Heron, Across the Spider-Verse, Mutant Mayhem and Robot Dreams (which was also nominated for best independent feature) received directing noms.

Disney’s centennial-celebrating Wish and Dreamworks Animation’s Trolls World Tour both failed to earn a single nomination. Among the additional titles snubbed in the top category for best feature were Illuminations’s The Super Mario Bros. Movie (the year’s highest grossing animated movie that topped $1 billion at the global box office), which grabbed just one Annie nom; Aardman and Netflix’s Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget, which earned two Annie noms; and Illumination’s Migration, which collected one.

Nimona began production at the former Blue Sky Studios and was shut down when the studio was acquired by Disney as part of the Fox purchase. But the team, including Annie nominated helmers Nick Bruno and Troy Quane, believed in the movie, and Nimona was revived by Annapurna and Netflix.

A pair of animated shorts that are Oscar shortlisted, HUMO and War Is Over! Inspired by the Music of John and Yoko, received Annie nominations for best short subject. VFX shortlisted Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 earned an Annie nom for character animation is a live action feature.

During the 51st Annie Awards, which will be held Feb. 17 at UCLA’s Royce Hall, Winsor McCay Awards for career achievement will be bestowed on animator and director Charlotte “Lotte” Reiniger (posthumous), Studio Ghibli composer Joe Hisaishi, and National Film Board animator and producer Marcy Page.

“The Artists of Walt Disney Animation” will be honored with a Special Achievement Award. The June Foray Award for charitable impact will be presented to BRIC Foundation co-founders Alison Mann and Nicole Hendrix, and the Ub lwerks Award for technical achievement will go to John Oxberry (posthumous).

The complete list of nominees follows:

BEST FEATURE

Nimona -Annapurna Animation for Netflix

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse -Sony Pictures Animation

Suzume -CoMix Wave Films Inc. and STORY inc.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem -Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies

The Boy and the Heron -Studio Ghibli / Distributed by GKIDS

BEST FEATURE-INDEPENDENT

Ernest & Celestine: A Trip to Gibberitia -Folivari, Mélusine Productions, Studio Canal / Distributed by GKIDS

Four Souls of Coyote -Cinemon Entertainment

Robot Dreams -Arcadia Motion Pictures

The Inventor -Curiosity Studios

White Plastic Sky -SALTO Films & Artichoke

BEST SPECIAL PRODUCTION 

Invincible: Atom Eve
Amazon MGM Studios, Skybound Entertainment

Shape Island: The Winter Blues
Bix Pix Entertainment in association with Apple

Snoopy Presents: One-of-a-Kind Marcie
WildBrain Studios in association with Apple

The Smeds and The Smoos
Magic Light Pictures

The Velveteen Rabbit

Magic Light Pictures in association with Apple

BEST SHORT SUBJECT

Carne de Dios
Ojo Raro & Fedora Productions

Daffy in Wackyland
Warner Bros. Animation

HUMO
Outik Animation, 3rd Street Video, Mindsoup Entertainment, IMCINE

PINA
PUNCHLINE CINEMA / NEXT DAYS FILMS

WAR IS OVER! Inspired by the Music of John & Yoko
ElectroLeague

BEST SPONSORED 

“Video Games” by Tenacious D
Pinreel Inc.

Alzheimer’s Research UK ‘Change The Ending’
Passion Pictures

Laugh Track – The National (featuring Phoebe Bridgers)
Bernard Derriman

Up in smoke
NOMINT

BEST TV/MEDIA – PRESCHOOL

BatwheelsEpisode: To the Batmobile! – Warner Bros. Animatio

Ghee Happy  Episode: Navagraha -Ghee Happy Studio

Playdate with Winnie the Pooh  Episode: Piglet, Tigger and the Cardboard Box -Oddbot Inc.

StoryBots: Answer Time  Episode: Fractions -JibJab Bros. Studios for Netflix

The Creature Cases Episode: The Forest Food Bandit -Silvergate Media/Team TO/Choice/Provisions/Netflix

BEST TV/MEDIA – CHILDREN 

CURSES! Episode: The Baboon Temple -DreamWorks Animation

Hilda Episode: Chapter 8: The Fairy Isle -Hilda Productions Limited, a Silvergate Media Company, Netflix Inc. and Mercury Filmworks

Marvel’s Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur Episode: The Beyonder -Flying Bark Productions / Disney Television Animation

My Dad the Bounty Hunter Episode: Bizarre Ride -A Netflix Series

Shape Island Episode: 105B Square’s Special Place -Bix Pix Entertainment in association with Apple

BEST TV/MEDIA – MATURE

Big Mouth Episode: The International Show – Netflix

Blue Eye Samurai Episode: Pilot: Hammerscale – A Netflix Series / 3 Arts Entertainment and Blue Spirit Productions

Bob’s Burgers Episode: Amelia – 20th Television Animation

Scavengers Reign Episode: The Signal -Max in association with Titmouse Animation and Green Street

Tomato Kitchen Episode: Special Production – Bilibili / Studio Reflection

BEST TV/MEDIA – LIMITED SERIES

Kizazi Moto: Generation Fire Episode: Enkai -Triggerfish Animation Studio & Blinkink

Only You: An Animated Shorts Collection Episode: Yellowbird -Afterman production in association with Max/Warner Bros. Discovery

Pokémon: Path to the Peak Episode: 1 -The Pokémon Company International

BEST STUDENT FILM

From The Top

Student Director: Rich Farris
Student Producer: Martina Buendia Silva
School: National Film and Television School

Kolaj

Student Director: Besen Dilek

Student Producer: Besen Dilek

School: Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg GmbH

La quête de l’humain

Student Team: Mélina IENCO, Lucie JURIC, Caroline LEIBEL, Faustine MERLE, Claire PELLET
School: Gobelins, l’école de l’image

Quem Salva 

Student Team: Laure Devin, Maxime Bourstin, Nathan Medam, Charles

Hechinger, Titouan Jouent
School: Supinfocom Rubika

The Little Poet

Student Director: Justine King
Student Producer: Justine King
School: California Institute of the Arts

BEST FX – TV/MEDIA

Blue Eye Samurai  Episode: All Evil Dreams and Angry Words – Production Company: A Netflix Series / 3 Arts Entertainment and Blue Spirit Productions – FX Production Company: Blue Spirit

Thomas Decaens, Karl Burtin, Laurent Bretonniere

Kizazi Moto: Generation Fire Episode: Moremi – Production Company: Triggerfish for Disney+ – FX Production Company: Lucan Matthew Dunwoody, Dmitry Sarkisov, Podchasha Yuri Anatolyevich, Richard Bothma, Emile Van Straaten

Star Wars: Visions Episode: Sith -Production Company: Lucasfilm Ltd.- FX Production Company: El Guiri Studios

Jonatan Catalán, Alberto Sánchez, Phoebe Arjona, Virginia Cantaro, Rubén Hinarejos

The Bad Guys: A Very Bad Holiday Episode: The Bad Guys: A Very Bad Holiday – Production Company: DreamWorks Animation – FX Production Company: DreamWorks Animation and 88 Pictures Sateesh Malla, Russell Richardson Jr., Akash Gopal, Basavaraj P, Kevin Rumold

What If…? Episode 206, “What If…Kahhori Reshaped the World?” Episode: 206 – Production Company: Marvel Studios – FX Production Company: SDFX Studios

Ryan Barringer, Rajkumar Gurudu, Bipin Kumar Patra, Pranil Ravindra Mahajan

BEST FX – FEATURE

Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget  – Production Company: Netflix Presents An Aardman Production – FX Production Company: Aardman Production

Charles Copping, Jon Biggins, Jim Lewis, Rich Spence, Martin Lipmann

Elemental – Production Company: Pixar Animation Studios- FX Production Company: Pixar Animation Studios

Chris Chapman, Tim Speltz, Krzysztof Rost, Amit Baadkar, Ravindra Dwivedi

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse – Production Company: Sony Pictures Animation – FX Production Company: Sony Pictures Imageworks

Pav Grochola, Filippo Maccari, Naoki Kato, Nicola Finizio, Edmond Boulet-Gilly

Suzume – Production Company: CoMix Wave Films Inc. and STORY inc. – FX Production Company: CoMix Wave Films Inc. and STORY inc.

Yoshitaka Takeuchi, Hiroyuki Seshita

The Peasants – Production Company: Breakthru Films – FX Production Company: Breakthru Productions

Lukasz Mackiewicz, Kamil Polak

BEST CHARACTER ANIMATION – TV/MEDIA

Adventure Time: Fionna and Cake  Episode: The Winter King – Cartoon Network Studios

Alex Small-Butera

Blue Eye Samurai Episode: Episodes 101, 104 and 106 – A Netflix Series / 3 Arts Entertainment and Blue Spirit Productions
Alex Bard

Kizazi Moto: Generation Fire  Episode: Moremi, Surf Sangoma, Stardust – Triggerfish Animation for Disney+

Andre DeVilliers

Star Wars: Visions Episode: I Am Your Mother – Lucasfilm Ltd.

Laurie Sitzia

The Amazing Digital Circus Pilot Episode: 1 – Glitch Productions
Kevin Temmer

BEST CHARACTER ANIMATION – FEATURE

Elemental – Pixar Animation Studios

Jessica Torres

Nimona  – Annapurna Animation for Netflix

Toby Seale

Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken – DreamWorks Animation

Prashanth Cavale

Suzume – CoMix Wave Films Inc. and STORY inc.

Kenichi Tsuchiya

The Boy and the Heron – Studio Ghibli / Distributed by GKIDS

Takeshi Honda

BEST CHARACTER ANIMATION – LIVE ACTION

Ahsoka  – Production Company: Lucasfilm – FX Production Company: Industrial Light & Magic

Rick O’Connor, Mike Beaulieu, Stewart Alves, Kevin Reuter, Wai Kit Wan

Cocaine Bear– Production Company: Wētā FX- FX Production Company: Wētā FX

Carmelo Leggiero, Steve Braggs, Kevin Kelm, Cedric Enriquez Canlas, Kane Elferink

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3  – Production Company: Marvel Studios – FX Production Company: Framestore

Fernando Herrera, Chris Hurtt, Nathan McConnel, Daniel Cabral, Chris McGaw

The Little Mermaid – Production Company: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures – FX Production Company: Framestore

Pablo Grillo, Kayn Garcia, Ferran Casas, Stuart Ellis, Joseph Lewis

Transformers: Rise of the Beasts – Production Company: Wētā FX – FX Production Company: Wētā FX

Kevin Estey, Kai-Hua Lan, Blaine Toderian Toderian, Richard John Moore, Joseph C.K Leong

BEST CHARACTER ANIMATION – VIDEO GAME

Atomic Heart – Mundfish
Mundfish Animation Team

Hogwarts Legacy – Avalanche Software

Tara Edwards

Let’s! Revolution! – BUCK
BUCK Animation Team

Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 – Insomniac Games
Insomniac Games Animation Team

Teslagrad 2 – Rain Games
Aslak Helgesen

BEST CHARACTER DESIGN – TV/MEDIA

Clone High  Episode: Let’s Try This Again
– Max in association with Lord Miller, Doozer, ShadowMachine, and MTV Entertainment

Tara Billinger

Jessica’s Big Little World Episode: Bedtime Routine- Cartoon Network Studios

Nick Winn

Kizazi Moto: Generation Fire Episode: You Give Me Heart- Triggerfish for Disney+

Lesego Vorester

Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur Episode: 515M-106 (The Beyonder) – Disney Television Animation / Cinema Gypsy Productions

Jose Lopez

Spirit Rangers Episode: Water Protectors – Laughing Wild / Netflix

Marie Delmas

BEST CHARACTER DESIGN – FEATURE

Elemental – Pixar Animation Studios

Maria Yi

Merry Little Batman – Amazon MGM Studios, Warner Bros. Animation, DC Entertainment

Nikolas Ilic

Nimona -Annapurna Animation for Netflix

Aidan Sugano

Robot Dreams – Arcadia Motion Pictures
Daniel Fernandez Casas

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse – Sony Pictures Animation
Jesús Alonso Iglesias

BEST DIRECTION – TV/MEDIA
Kizazi Moto: Generation Fire  Episode: Moremi- Triggerfish Animation Studio & Lucan Studio

Shofela Coker, Andrew McNally

My Dad the Bounty Hunter Episode: Bizarre Ride – A Netflix Series

Kenji Ono, Kai Akira, Patrick Harpin

Pokémon Concierge Episode: #2 What’s on Your Mind, Psyduck? – dwarf studios for Netflix

Iku Ogawa

Scavengers Reign Episode: The Fall – Max in association with Titmouse Animation and Green Street

Diego Porral

Star Wars: Visions Episode: Screecher’s Reach – Lucasfilm Ltd.

Paul Young

BEST DIRECTION – FEATURE

Nimona  – Annapurna Animation for Netflix

Nick Bruno, Troy Quane

Robot Dreams  – Arcadia Motion Pictures
Pablo Berger, Benoît Feroumont

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse – Sony Pictures Animation
Joaquim Dos Santos, Kemp Powers, Justin K. Thompson

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem – Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies

Jeff Rowe, Kyler Spears

The Boy and the Heron – Studio Ghibli / Distributed by GKIDS

Hayao Miyazaki

BEST MUSIC – TV/MEDIA

Animaniacs  Episode: Talladega Mice – Warner Brothers Animation/Amblin Entertainment/HULU Originals

Steven Bernstein, Julie Bernstein

Babylon 5: The Road Home Special Production– Warner Bros. Animation

Michael McCuistion, Kristopher Carter, Lolita Ritmanis

Pacemaker Short Film – A Running Commentary
Christopher Lennertz

Star Wars: Visions Episode: Aau’s Song – Lucasfilm Ltd.

Markus Wormstorm, Nadia Darries, Dineo du Toit

The Smeds and The Smoos Special Production– Magic Light Pictures

René Aubry

BEST MUSIC – FEATURE

Elemental – Pixar Animation Studios
Thomas Newman, Ari “LAUV” Leff

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse – Sony Pictures Animation
Daniel Pemberton, Metro Boomin

Suzume – CoMix Wave Films Inc. and STORY inc.

Kazuma Jinnouchi, RADWIMPS

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem  – Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies

Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross

The Boy and the Heron – Studio Ghibli / Distributed by GKIDS

Joe Hisaishi

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN – TV/MEDIA

Blue Eye Samurai  Episode: Hammerscale – Netflix Animation

Jason Scheier

Blue Eye Samurai Episode: The Great Fire of 1657 – A Netflix Series / 3 Arts Entertainment and Blue Spirit Productions

Toby Wilson, James Wilson, Emil Mitev

Scavengers Reign Episode: The Storm – Max in association with Titmouse Animation and Green Street

Charles Huettner, Jonathan Djob Nkondo, Pauline Mauvière, Hugo Moreno, Jon Juarez

Star Wars: Visions Episode: Sith – Lucasfilm Ltd.
Carlos Salgado

What If…? Episode: What if… Nebula Joined the Nova Corps? – Marvel Studios

Paul Lasaine, Kristina Vardazaryan, Cynthia Halley, Ryan Magno, Simon Dunsdon

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN – FEATURE

Elemental – Pixar Animation Studios

Don Shank, Maria Yi, Dan Holland, Jennifer Chang, Laura Meyer

Nimona – Annapurna Animation for Netflix

Aidan Sugano, Jeff Turley

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse – Sony Pictures Animation
Patrick O’Keefe, Dean Gordon

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem  Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies

Yashar Kassai, Arthur, Tiffany Lam

The Boy and the Heron – Studio Ghibli / Distributed by GKIDS

Yoji Takeshige

BEST STORYBOARDING – TV/MEDIA

Craig Before The Creek Episode: Craig Before The Creek – Cartoon Network Studios

Erik Fountain

Fright Krewe Episode: The Blood Awakening, Part 1 – DreamWorks Animation

Leah Artwick

Gremlins: Secrets of the Mogwai Episode: Never Give Up- Warner Bros. Animation and Amblin Television

Kristine Lee

Kung Fu Panda: The Dragon Knight Episode: Apok-ta-pokalypse Now, Part II – DreamWorks Animation

Grace Liu

Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur Episode: 515M-107 “Run the Rink”
– Disney Television Animation / Cinema Gypsy Productions

Ben Juwono

BEST STORYBOARDING – FEATURE
Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget 
– Netflix Presents An Aardman Production

Richard Phelan

Nimona – Annapurna Animation for Netflix

Esteban Bravo

Robot Dreams  – Arcadia Motion Pictures

Maca Gil

Suzume  – CoMix Wave Films Inc. and STORY inc.

Makoto Shinkai

The Boy and the Heron – Studio Ghibli / Distributed by GKIDS

Hayao Miyazaki

#27 BEST VOICE ACTING – TV/MEDIA ● Archer 

Episode: Keys Open Doors – FX Productions

○ Aisha Tyler (Character: Lana Kane)

● Craig Before The Creek Episode: Craig Before The Creek – Cartoon Network Studios

○ Vico Ortiz (Character: Serena)

● Marvel’s Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur
Episode: Moon Girl Landing
– Flying Bark Productions / Disney Television Animation

○ Diamond White (Character: Lunella Lafayette / Moon Girl)

● Solar Opposites
Episode: The Re-Visibility Bouillabaisse – 20th Television Animation

○ Dan Stevens (Character: Korvo)

● The Velveteen Rabbit
Episode: The Velveteen Rabbit
– Magic Light Pictures in association with Apple

○ Alex Lawther (Character: Velveteen Rabbit)

#28 BEST VOICE ACTING – FEATURE ● Merry Little Batman 

– Amazon MGM Studios, Warner Bros. Animation, DC Entertainment ○ David Hornsby (Character: Joker)

● Migration 

– Illumination
○ Tresi Gazal (Character: Gwen)

● Nimona 

– Annapurna Animation for Netflix
○ Chloë Grace Moretz (Character: Nimona)

● Suzume 

– CoMix Wave Films Inc. and STORY inc.
○ Hokuto Matsumura (Character: Souta Munakata)

● The Super Mario Bros. Movie 

– Illumination
○ Jack Black (Character: Bowser)

#29 BEST WRITING – TV/MEDIA ● Blue Eye Samurai 

Episode: Episode 105: The Tale of the Ronin and the Bride
– A Netflix Series / 3 Arts Entertainment and Blue Spirit Productions

○ Amber Noizumi

● Only You: An Animated Shorts Collection
Episode: Yellowbird
– Afterman production in association with Max/Warner Bros. Discovery

○ Tsvetelina Zdraveva, Jerred North

● Rock Paper Scissors Episode: Birthday Police
– Nickelodeon Animation Studios

○ Josh Lehrman, Kyle Stegina, Aram Spencer Porter, Julia Prescott, Mike Trapp

● Rosie’s Rules
Episode: Time Trouble
– 9 Story Media Group, Brown Bag Films

○ Leyani Diaz, Maria Escobedo

● Scavengers Reign
Episode: The Reunion
– Max in association with Titmouse Animation and Green Street

○ Sean Buckelew

#30 BEST WRITING – FEATURE ● Nimona 

– Annapurna Animation for Netflix
○ Robert L. Baird, Lloyd Taylor

● Robot Dreams 

– Arcadia Motion Pictures ○ Pablo Berger

● Suzume 

– CoMix Wave Films Inc. and STORY inc. ○ Makoto Shinkai

● Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem 

– Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies
○ Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg, Jeff Rowe, Dan Hernandez, Benji Samit

● The Boy and the Heron 

– Studio Ghibli / Distributed by GKIDS ○ Hayao Miyazaki

#31 BEST EDITORIAL – TV/MEDIA ● Blue Eye Samurai 

Episode: Episode 105: The Tale of the Ronin and the Bride
– A Netflix Series / 3 Arts Entertainment and Blue Spirit Productions

○ Yuka Shirasuna

● Hilda
Episode: Chapter 6: The Forgotten Lake
– Hilda Productions Limited, a Silvergate Media Company, Netflix Inc. and Mercury Filmworks

○ John Mckinnon, Mike Stefanelli

● I Am Groot
Episode: Groot’s Snow Day – Marvel Studios

○ Dan Urrutia

● Star Wars: Visions Episode: Screecher’s Reach – Lucasfilm Ltd.

○ Richie Cody, ACE, BFE

● The Legend of Vox Machina
Episode: The Sunken Tomb
– Amazon MGM Studios, Critical Role Productions, Titmouse

○ Todd Raleigh

#32 BEST EDITORIAL – FEATURE 

● Elemental 

– Pixar Animation Studios
○ Stephen Schaffer, Amera Rizk, Gregory Snyder, Jen Jew, Kevin Rose-Williams

● Leo 

– Happy Madison for Netflix
○ Patrick Voetberg, Joseph Titone, Darrian M. James, Danny Miller, Brian

Robinson

● Nimona 

– Annapurna Animation for Netflix
○ Randy Trager, Erin Crackel, Stephen Schwartz, Ashley Calle

● Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse 

– Sony Pictures Animation
○ Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse Editorial Team

● Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem 

– Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies
○ Greg Levitan, Illya Quinteros, David Croomes, Myra Owyang