Could 'Toy Story 3' Be the First Best Picture Toon?

November 29, 2010
By James L. Hirsen, J.D., Ph.D.
contributor to

A particular Oscar campaign that may be of interest to movie-loving conservatives is one that involves Disney. The Mouse House is going after a nomination in the Best Picture category for “Toy Story 3.”

The company is running ads in trade publications that show past Best Picture Oscar winners such as “Shakespeare in Love” with Toy Story characters superimposed.

Back in the 1990s, another Disney flick, “Beauty and the Beast,” picked up a Best Picture nomination, and Disney is hungry for the win.

“Toy Story 3” has a better chance of getting the nomination under the new rules, which expanded the category from five to 10 films.

Under the 10-picture rule, the studio scored a nomination in the Best Picture category for “Up” last year.

The actual snagging of a win will depend on the willingness of Academy members to depart from honoring a film that might instead be perceived as more worthy, such as an intense drama.

“Toy Story 3” appeals to audiences and critics alike. The movie has taken in approximately $415 million domestically and over a billion worldwide, making it the No.1 box-office hit of the year.

Borrowed from the pages of “Animal Farm,” the toon’s Orwellian warning to preserve liberty gives the movie a timely relevance.

Although no animated film has ever won for Best Picture, even if “Toy Story 3” doesn’t come out on top in that category it should pretty much be a shoe-in to take the trophy for Best Animated Feature.