The Golden Globe Nominations have been announced, and Ghibli Freaks will be paying special attention to the Animation and Foreign Film categories. Sadly, Ponyo did not receive any nominations.
The movies nominated for Best Animated Feature Film include Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, Coraline, Fantastic Mr. Fox, The Princess and the Frog, and Up.
While I would have been thrilled to see Miyazaki's Ponyo given a nod, it most likely would have to be in the Foreign Language category, and not the Animation Feature. American movies take center stage in this venue, and this year has been excellent for the animation medium. There's just a lot of competition this time around.
I have to say I'm happy to see Coraline and Fantastic Mr. Fox given nominations. I wouldn't expect either to win (Pixar will wrap up the award once again), but it's very good news to see these more independent-minded (and inventive) films acknowledged. I would like to see more films like those. I'd like to see the medium expand and grow, and not merely rehash or mimic what Pixar has done.
I know it's a silly old cliche, but sometimes, it really is good enough just to be nominated. The artists behind these films should feel proud. And they should feel inspired to create more intelligent, original movies. The animation medium is dependent on fresh ideas, not formula. Let's hope some good comes from this.
The big question, for me, is what this suggest for the Oscar nominations. The Golden Globes are often viewed as an early indicator of where the Motion Picture Academy will go. That's probably truer for the major acting categories, and less so for the "minor" categories, but this does suggest where
Obviously, I think Ponyo deserves an Oscar nomination for Best Animation Feature. Heck, I think it deserves a nod for Best Picture, and I've harped on that enough. But it is quite possible that Hollywood will decide that Hayao Miyazaki has already been recognized for his achievements when he won the Oscar for Spirited Away. The Golden Globe nominations suggest this. We'll have to wait and see what happens.