New rule allows five noms, with many to choose from

Animated movies have been one of the year’s major bright spots at the cineplex. Thanks to a new rule, the HFPA can nominate five (previously three), any one of which could break out to make the Oscar’s list.

“CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS”
Classic Precursor: “Armageddon” and “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” breed a wonderful monster.
Shot at a Globe Nom: If the HFPA is in a hungry party mood, Phil Lord and Chris Miller’s wildly imaginative “Cloudy” will make the cut.

“CORALINE”
Classic Precursor: Coraline discovers the “Other World,” much like another little girl dropped through the rabbit hole in Disney’s “Alice in Wonderland” (1951).
Shot at a Globe Nom: Director Henry Selick’s “James and the Giant Peach” and “The Night Before Christmas” were not GG-blessed but his new 3D stop-motion fantasy could be the charm. A $120 million-plus gross doesn’t hurt its chances either.

“FANTASTIC MR. FOX”
Classic Precursor: Another quirky barnyard pic, “Animal Farm” (1954), received a BAFTA nom.
Shot at a Globe Nom: HFPA has avoided the charms of Wes Anderson’s “Rushmore,” “The Royal Tennenbaums” and “The Darjeeling Limited” despite their comic pedigree. Roald Dahl’s movie adaptations have also been HFPA-ignored, except for the nom that Johnny Depp snared for “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.” Maybe the voices of Globe faves George Clooney and Meryl Streep will pull “Fox” out of the hole and into the awards limelight.

“ICE AGE 3″
Classic Precursor: It doesn’t get much more classic than “The Lost World” (1925).
Shot at a Globe Nom: The first two “Ice Age” pics made up for Globes snubs by grossing more than $1 billion worldwide. “Ice Age 3″ adds more than $874 mil­lion to that growing tally. Maybe it’s time to pay attention to the Carlos Saldanha oeuvre.

“PONYO”
Classic Precursor: “The Little Mermaid” meets “Spirited Away.”
Shot at a Globe Nom: While Hayao Miyazaki has received two Oscar noms and won one Oscar (for “Spirited Away”), he has yet to be honored by the Globes.

“THE PRINCESS AND THE FROG”
Classic Precursor: It didn’t win the Oscar, but “Beauty and the Beast” (1991) won the Globe for best comedy/musical.
Shot at a Globe Nom: Disney blows the original Grimm brothers’ “The Frog Prince” story out of the bayou. Best aspect of its update and deconstruction is the African-American heroine, the first in Disney’s 49 animated features.

“UP”
Classic Precursor: It recalls the story of “Around the World in 80 Days,” arguably the worst film ever to be honored with top awards from the Golden Globes as well as Oscar.
Shot at a Globe Nom: Forget that earlier balloon pic. Pete Docter and Bob Peterson’s fantastical direction and literate script banish any comparisons to Mike Todd’s leaden trip.

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