“Coco,” Pixar’s colorful journey through the Land of the Dead, swept the 45th Annie Awards on Saturday, winning in every category in which it was nominated, picking up 11 trophies overall, including best animated feature.
“Coco” also won prizes for direction (Lee Unkrich and Adrian Molina), voice acting (Anthony Gonzalez), animated effects (Shaun Galinak, Dave Hale, Jason Johnston, Carl Kaphan and Keith Daniel Klohn), character animation (John Chun Chiu Lee), character design (Daniel Arriaga, Daniela Strijleva, Greg Dykstra, Alonso Martinez and Zaruhi Galstyan), music (Michael Giacchino, Kristin Anderson-Lopez, Robert Lopez, Germaine Franco and Adrian Molina), production design (Harley Jessup, Danielle Feinberg, Bryn Imagire, Nathaniel McLaughlin and Ernesto Nemesio), storyboarding (Dean Kelly), writing (Adrian Molina and Matthew Aldrich) and editorial (Steve Bloom, Lee Unkrich, Greg Snyder and Tim Fox).
Coming on the heels its Golden Globe win for animated feature, the Annies victory cements “Coco’s” position as the frontrunner in the category for the Oscars.
Cartoon Saloon’s “The Breadwinner” was named best animated feature — independent, and will go up against “Coco” for the Academy prize on March 4.
“Revolting Rhymes,” Magic Light Pictures’ adaptation of Roald Dahl’s reimagining of classic fairy tales, picked up the prize for best animated special production. The short film will go up against “Dear Basketball” in the animated short category at the Oscars.
On the TV side, it was a big night for Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim. “Rick and Morty” took home trophies for best general audience TV/broadcast production and writing (Ryan Ridley and Dan Guterman), while “Samurai Jack” garnered three awards: one for Craig Kellman’s character design, one for Scott Wills for production design and one for Paul Douglas for editorial. Overall, Cartoon Network snagged six awards, including a best animated TV/broadcast production for children win for “We Bare Bears.”
Disney Television Animation’s “Disney Mickey Mouse” picked up three awards, including direction (Dave Wasson, Eddie Trigueros and Alonso Ramirez-Ramos), storyboarding (Trigueros) and music (Christopher Willis). Disney Junior’s “Octonauts” won the award for best TV/broadcast production for preschool children.
Other winners included Lyft’s “June” for TV/broadcast commercial; student film “Poles Apart” by Polma Baeza; DreamWorks Animation Television’s “Trollhunters” for character animation in a TV/broadcast production; “War of the Planet of the Apes” for character animation in a live-action production; and “Cuphead” for character animation in a video game.
In juried accolades, the Winsor McCay Award for career contributions to animation was given to British character animator James Baxter, “SpongeBob SquarePants” creator Stephen Hillenburg and Canadian animation duo Wendy Tilby and Amanda Forbis. The Ub Iwerks Award for technical advancement went to TVPaint for its 2D animation software. Studio MDHR Entertainment was awarded the Special Achievement Award for its 1930s-inspired game “Cuphead.” The June Foray Award for benevolent impact was given to animation historian Didier Ghez. And a certificate of merit awarded to David Nimitz, who was Foray’s longtime caretaker.
The Annie Awards ceremony, held at Royce Hall on the campus of UCLA and live-streamed on the Annie Awards website, was dedicated to ASIFA-Hollywood’s founding member June Foray, the legendary voice actor who passed away last year at the age of 99. “More than anyone else, June was responsible for founding the Annies 45 years ago. This will be the first year she is not going to be with us, so we will do our best to remember and celebrate June’s creativity, generosity and unrelenting advocacy for the animation community,” said ASIFA-Hollywood Executive Director Frank Gladstone, ahead of the ceremony.
The Time’s Up and #MeToo movements were also in evidence at the ceremony as the org Women in Animation urged members to wear white roses and Time’s Up pins to the event.
Complete list of winners: