'Cimarron,' 'Spirited Away' win big in Annie awards

Animators were in high spirits as “Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron” and “Miyazaki’s Spirited Away” were the big winners at the 30th annual Annie Awards, presented Saturday night at the Alex Theater in Glendale. The awards, presented by AFISA-Hollywood, the Intl. Animated Film Society, recognize outstanding achievement in animation in film, TV, commercials, videos and special projects.

“Mizayaki’s Spirited Away” won four Annies, including top animated theatrical feature. “Spirit” won four awards recognizing the film’s accomplishments in character design, production design, effects animation and storyboards. Other film winners included “Monsters, Inc.” and “Lilo & Stitch.”

“The Simpsons” won the honors for top animated TV series. The other most recognized TV programs were “Samurai Jack” and “Rolie Polie Olie.”

Three juried awards were presented, including the June Foray award to Girard R. Miller for benevolent and charitable impact on the art and industry of animation. Other honors were given to Gene Hazelton, Floyd Norman and Robert and Richard Sherman for lifetime contributions to animation and to Lou Scheimer for service to the American animation industry.

The show was hosted by Annie- and Emmy-nominated comedian-writer Steve Marmel.

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