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With the competition as fierce as ever in the world of the animated feature, we should perhaps spare a thought for those who will be presiding over the 42nd Annie Awards, where The Boxtrolls leads the way with a grand total of 13 nominations.

It is closely followed by How to Train Your Dragon 2, which scored 10 nominations, with Big Hero 6 and Song of the Sea in joint third with seven apiece.

The Boxtrolls‘ tally puts it on a par with the likes of Ratatouille and The Hunchback of Notre Dame, whilst elevating it above classics such as Toy Story 2 and Finding Nemo. However, no-one remembers the nominees once the gongs have been dished out, so we’ll see. Incidentally, How to Train Your Dragon won 10 awards in 2011, so it’ll be interesting to find out how the sequel fares.

It would be folly to say that there’s only one category that matters, but every bash has its blue riband event and down at the Annies it’s Best Animated Feature. Going up against the multiple nominees previously mentioned are Cheatin’, The Book of Life, The LEGO Movie and The Tale of The Princess Kaguya.

There may be some of you out there who are unfamiliar with the Annies. It’s true to say that they are a bit of an unsung hero in amongst all the razzmatazz of awards season, especially as they’ve only been going since 1972, which compared to the Oscars makes them a veritable spring chicken of a ceremony. They were founded by June Foray to honour Max and David Fleischer, the geniuses behind such characters as Betty Boop, as back then animation was about the only medium that wasn’t really recognised – but from little acorns and all that. Nowadays the Annies are used as a barometer for the Academy Awards, proof of which came last year when Frozen won Best Animated Feature at both ceremonies.

Will history repeat itself? Find out on January 31.

Sources: Annie Awards | BBC News | Animation Xpress
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