Not one pundit?

Posted by · 5:28 am · January 28th, 2011

Thanks to reader Graysmith for pointing out this Hollywood Reporter piece, in which Tim Appelo poses the semi-annual small-beats-big argument about the Oscar nominees. To this end, he points to the Best Animated Feature category, where bijou art film “The Illusionist” beat out major money-spinners “Tangled” and “Despicable Me,” and gets this quote from understandably overjoyed Sony Pictures Classics chief Michael Barker:

The Illusionist won against those big studio pictures. Not one pundit predicted it. This is animation done the old-fashioned way, without CGI, like Disney did.

Ahem. And just so I’m not tooting my own horn, Steve Pond,¬†Nathaniel Rogers and Sasha Stone, among others, saw it coming too. Make no mistake, Sylvain Chomet’s film was an underdog — and that narrative suits it nicely — but it didn’t exactly fall from the sky either. I’m really happy for you, Mr. Barker, and immalitchoofinish, but give us pundits some credit.

[Image: Sony Pictures Classics]

→ 17 Comments Tags: , , | Filed in: Daily

17 responses so far

  • 1 1-28-2011 at 6:16 am

    Silrone Lima said...

    I think he was talking about real pundits

  • 2 1-28-2011 at 6:19 am

    Joey said...

    What qualifies as a real pundit, then? Sasha Stone has been running AwardsDaily for over 10 years. Color me confused.

  • 3 1-28-2011 at 6:23 am

    Graysmith said...

    Well, if no “real” pundits predicted it, what does that say about them? That they’re clueless and bad at their jobs?

    I can accept that Barker wants to play up the underdog nature of his film, as if it’s a shocker a la Nolan’s snub or something, but it just comes off as really incompetent. Much like many of those “I’m sooooo shocked, I had no idea I was even in the running” reactions from nominees on Oscar morning.

  • 4 1-28-2011 at 6:34 am

    Guy Lodge said...

    Let’s be clear about one thing: there are no real pundits in this game. Everyone’s faking their way through it.

    I was just having a bit of fun with the post.

  • 5 1-28-2011 at 7:22 am

    Jim T said...

    Kanye West references FTW. I still haven’t got tired of them!

    And, yes, it’s not to be taken that seriously Graysmith. It’s not like he’s pushing for a win. He knows it’s not possible.

  • 6 1-28-2011 at 8:03 am

    Michael said...

    “immalitchoofinish” – that’s very nice of you kanye lodge ;^P

    I hate not having seen this film yet. I hope its nomination will increase its exposure and escalate the expansion into more markets. I also really want to see Idiots and Angels and My Dog Tulip as well… This year really was a damn good year for animation afterall.

  • 7 1-28-2011 at 8:23 am

    Tyler J. Pratt said...

    I know I have nowhere near the credentials of any of the above listed names, but I take pride in the fact that I predicted the illusionist to get a nod, and continue to stand by my current prediction that Chomet’s film will be picking up gold come Oscar Night.
    Check out my full list of predictions over at The Oscar Hut, which is set to awaken from it’s six month long hibernation come Groundhog Day. Heres hoping the blog sees it shadow!

  • 8 1-28-2011 at 8:33 am

    tintin(uruguay) said...

    Tangled is better than The illusionist. Sorry.

  • 9 1-28-2011 at 8:35 am

    Guy Lodge said...

    If you pull that prediction off, Tyler, we will all take our hats off to you. Stick with it.

  • 10 1-28-2011 at 9:03 am

    Matthew Starr said...

    As I have said before, how can a film besides TS3 win best animated feature if TS3 was nominated for best picture?

    Is this even logistically possible? Essentially the voters who voted TS3 in their top ten best pictures of the year would have to change their mind?

  • 11 1-28-2011 at 9:11 am

    Scott W. said...

    Compliments on the accompanying screen shot Guy. Appropriate and very nice work.

  • 12 1-28-2011 at 9:19 am

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    Yeah, and obviously I switched last minute. Odd of Barker to say that, as I know he reads all of this stuff carefully.

  • 13 1-28-2011 at 9:21 am

    Guy Lodge said...

    Matthew: You’re talking about the Oscars and you want logistics? Ha.

    Obviously, “Toy Story 3” is winning Best Animated Feature for a multitude of reasons, but voter rationale is rarely as clear-cut as you’re suggesting.

    For example, only a few years ago, “Amelie” was nominated for Best Film and Best Foreign Language Film at the BAFTAs, only to lose the latter award to “Amores Perros.” It’s a human process. Oddities abound.

  • 14 1-28-2011 at 11:31 am

    Pablo (BOG) said...

    Practically everyone predicted The Illusionist. I dont really know of someone who thought Despicable Me would get in. I twas very clear that those were the 3 nominees.

  • 15 1-28-2011 at 12:16 pm

    Speaking English said...

    ***Practically everyone predicted The Illusionist. I dont really know of someone who thought Despicable Me would get in. I twas very clear that those were the 3 nominees.***

    No, it wasn’t very clear. “Tangled” certainly had a real shot at it.

  • 16 1-30-2011 at 5:53 am

    The Q-Mann said...

    I’m still upset Maximus from Tangled didn’t get a best supporting actor nom. I loved that damn horse.

  • 17 1-31-2011 at 7:52 am

    AML said...

    Tangled is much better feature than The Illusionist. The Illusionist didn’t even receive a BAFTA nomination being disposed by Despicable Me. Lets not even mention how bad it did at the boxoffice or its questionable morality.

    HTTYD is the only real competition TS3 has.

    As for Michael Barker

    “This is animation done the old-fashioned way, without CGI, like Disney did”.

    What a load of bull, they isn’t a single frame in the Illusionist that hasn’t received a digital treatment one way or another, its anything but done in the same way as vintage Disney.