Apparently, universal critical acclaim and the title of highest grossing anime film in history just aren’t enough, these days.

Earlier today, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences revealed their nominees for the 2017 Oscars. Relevant to our interests, though, is the list of contenders for “Best Animated Feature Film.” Wild Bunch & Studio Ghibli co-production The Red Turtle managed to make the list, among four other contenders. The full list includes:

  • Kubo and the Two Strings
  • Moana
  • My Life as a Zucchini
  • The Red Turtle
  • Zootopia

Neither Your Name. (Kimi na No wa.) nor Miss Hokusai made the cut for this year’s awards. Twenty-seven films were considered for nomination, including:

  • The Angry Birds Movie
  • April and the Extraordinary World
  • Bilal
  • Finding Dory
  • Ice Age: Collision Course
  • Kingsglaive Final Fantasy XV
  • Kubo and the Two Strings
  • Kung Fu Panda 3
  • The Little Prince
  • Long Way North
  • Miss Hokusai
  • Moana
  • Monkey King: Hero Is Back
  • Mune
  • Mustafa & the Magician
  • My Life as a Zucchini
  • Phantom Boy
  • The Red Turtle
  • Sausage Party
  • The Secret Life of Pets
  • Sing
  • Snowtime!
  • Storks
  • Trolls
  • 25 April
  • Your Name.
  • Zootopia

The Red Turtle is the first theatrical feature from Studio Ghibli since 2013’s The Wind Rises. The studio co-produced the feature with French company Wild Bunch. Michael Dudok de Wit (The Monk and the Fish) directed the feature, while Isao Takahata (Grave of the Fireflies, The Tale of Princess Kaguya) served as artistic director. The script was written by French director and screenwriter Pascale Ferran (Lady Chatterly, Bird People).

The feature debuted at France’s Cannes Film Festival on May 18, which was followed by a wider French release on June 29. The film won a Special Jury Prize at the festival.

Toho is distributing The Red Turtle in Japan. Sony Pictures distributes the film in North America under their “Sony Classics” label. They screened the feature in New York and Los Angeles on January 20.

Sony describes the film as:

Through the story of a man shipwrecked on a tropical island inhabited by turtles, crabs and birds, The Red Turtle recounts the milestones in the life of a human being.

Your Name. is an original film from Makoto Shinkai (5 Centimeters per Second, Children Who Chase Lost Voices),who directed the feature at CoMix Wave Films. Shinkai also penned the script, while Masayoshi Tanaka (anohana: The Flower We Saw That Day, High School of the Dead) provided character designs. Masashi Ando (Spirited Away, Paprika) served as animation director on the project.

The film made its global theatrical début on July 3, at Anime Expo. Funimation announced that they licensed the movie at the convention. The feature also saw an Oscar qualifying theatrical run in late 2017. A wide theatrical release is planned for April 7.

Funimation currently holds the rights to Your Name., which they describe as:

The day the stars fell, two lives changed forever. High schoolers Mitsuha and Taki are complete strangers living separate lives. But one night, they suddenly switch places. Mitsuha wakes up in Taki’s body, and he in hers. This bizarre occurrence continues to happen randomly, and the two must adjust their lives around each other. Yet, somehow, it works. They build a connection and communicate by leaving notes, messages, and more importantly, an imprint.

When a dazzling comet lights up the night’s sky, it dawns on them. They want something more from this connection—a chance to meet, an opportunity to truly know each other. Tugging at the string of fate, they try to find a way to each other. But distance isn’t the only thing keeping them apart. Is their bond strong enough to face the cruel irony of time? Or is their meeting nothing more than a wish upon the stars?

Miss Hokusai is based on Hinako Sugiura’s Sarusuberi manga. The film, which hit Japanese theaters in May 2015, was helmed by Keiichi Hara (Colorful, Crayon Shin-chan: Arashi o Yobu Eiko no Yakiniku Road) at Production I.G. Yoshimi Itazu provided character designs for the project, while Miho Maruo (The Dog of Flanders, Sazae-san) wrote the script.

GKids currently holds the domestic rights to the feature, and gave it a limited theatrical run in October. They describe Miss Hokusai as:

As all of Edo flocks to see the work of the revered painter Hokusai, his daughter O-Ei toils diligently inside his studio. Her masterful portraits, dragons and erotic sketches – sold under the name of her father – are coveted by upper crust Lords and journeyman print makers alike. Shy and reserved in public, in the studio O-Ei is as brash and uninhibited as her father, smoking a pipe while sketching drawings that would make contemporary Japanese ladies blush. But despite this fiercely independent spirit, O-Ei struggles under the domineering influence of her father and is ridiculed for lacking the life experience that she is attempting to portray in her art. Miss Hokusai‘s bustling Edo (present day Tokyo) is filled with yokai spirits, dragons, and conniving tradesmen, while O-Ei’s relationships with her demanding father and blind younger sister provide a powerful emotional underpinning to this sumptuously-animated feminist coming-of-age tale.

Source: Twitter (TheAcademy)