The 2019 Annie Awards have come and gone. The special event honors overall excellence as well as individual achievement in a total of 36 categories. The big award each year include Best Feature, Production Design, Character Animation, and Effects Animation, as well as Storyboarding, Writing, Music, Editing, and Voice Acting. It’s a wonderful event that highlights the numerous behind-the-scenes talent that creates our animated films, shorts, and commercials. This year marked the 46th Annual Annie Awards.
“Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,” from Sony Pictures, was the big winner this weekend, winning across seven categories. The film took home awards in Character Animation – David Han; Character Design – Shiyoon Kim; Directing – Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey & Rodney Rothman; Production Design – Justin K. Thompson; Writing – Phil Lord and Rodney Rothman; and Editorial – Bob Fisher, Andrew Leviton & Vivek Sharma. Best Animated Feature – Independent was awarded to MIrai (Studio Chizu).
This year the Best Virtual Reality Production category was added, and the award went to “Crow: The Legend” from Baobab Studios. Disney’s “Mary Poppins Returns” won the award for Best Animated Special Production, and Best Animated Short Subject went to “Weekends” from Past Lives Productions.
The award for Best Animated TV/Broadcast Commercial went to “Greenpeace” ‘There’s a Rang-Tan in My Bedroom’ from Passion Animation Studios, while the award for Best General Audience Animated TV/Broadcast Production went to “BoJack Horseman” episode ‘The Dog Days are Over’ from Torante Productions, LLC for Netflix.
Best Animated TV/Broadcast Production for Children went to “Hilda,” from Hilda Productions Limited, a Silvergate Media Company, Netflix Inc. and Mercury Filmworks. The award for Best Animated TV/Broadcast Production for Preschool Children went to “Ask the StoryBots” from JibJab Bros. Studios for Netflix; while Outstanding Achievement for Character Animation in a Live Action Production went to Disney’s “Mary Poppins Returns.”
“What a terrific night,” remarked ASIFA-Hollywood Executive Director, Frank Gladstone. “While the weather was a challenge this year, everyone rose to the occasion and we had a brilliant time. This year’s awards garnered the largest amount of submissions yet, leading to a great list of nominees, so it was no surprise that the Annie recipients continued to showcase animation’s rising influence and diversity.”
Among the guests and presenters were Pixar Chief Creative Officer, Pete Docter and Disney Creative Officer, Jennifer Lee; Brad Bird; Holly Hunter; Diane Warren; Frances Fisher; Brenda Chapman; Simon Wells; Steve Hickner; Phil Lord; Christopher Miller; Rob Paulsen; Maurice LaMarche; Jim Cummings; John Ratzenberger; and Patrick Warburton.
This year’s Winsor McCay recipients were Frank Braxton (posthumously), Ralph Eggleston and Andrea Romano. The Winsor McCay Award stands as one of the highest honors given to an individual in the animation industry in recognition for career contributions to the art of animation.
The June Foray award was given posthumously to Adam Burke. The June Foray award honors an individual(s) who has given significant and benevolent contributions to the art and industry of animation.
Blender Open Source Animation Software was given the Ub Iwerks Award. Ton Roosendaal, Dutch software developer and film producer, accepted the award. The Certificate of Merit recipient was presented to dedicated ASIFA-Hollywood volunteer, Jason Jones.
A complete list of winners can be found at annieawards.org.