(Note: This is a fictional creative writing exercise, inspired by hours of contemplation of which animated performances have been most worthy of attention over the years. This feature imagines that a Best Voice Performance category was added to the Oscars following Beauty and the Beast’s nomination for Best Picture at the 64th Academy Awards. Each week I’ll cover the hypothetical nominees and winner from one year of animated performances.)
After the controversy at the 75th Academy Awards, it seemed all anyone could talk about was Andy Serkis and the eligibility of his portrayal of Gollum in the Lord of the Rings films. His motion capture performance wasn’t nominated either for Best Supporting Actor or Best Voice Performance, and there was considerable debate over whether the acting or the animation branch (or both) would bend and give him the nomination. What the speculators didn’t count on was the arrival of Pixar’s latest film, one which would go on to be regarded as a game-changer in the industry on account of its depth and storytelling.