Toon Time

Some interesting Times features this week mark the arrival of the next two seasons of the film calendar:  holiday movie season . . . and awards season.

On the holiday front:

Enchanted, Disney’s new live action/animation blend, represents a shift in corporate thinking.  The Mouse now tolerates cross-pollination of animated characters from different fantasy worlds, and of course it has modestly embraced some parody.  Down the road, what might this mean for fair use?  Is this another example of a market for parody (thus curtailing fair use, at the margin)?  Or an example of the copyright owner recognizing that parody does not harm the market for the original (thus expanding fair use, at the margin)?

On the movie itself, go see it.  It’s lots of fun.  And it’s a nice tonic after No Country for Old Men, which is magnificent, but chilling.  Go see that, too.

On the awards front:

My favorite movie of 2007 (so far), Ratatouille, is now the subject of an interesting debate. Should the studio push for a “Best Film” Academy Award nomination?  Or a “Best Animated Feature” nomination?  Strategically, pushing for the first might lead to ballot-splitting and lessen its chances for either one.  Artistically, however, as the producer of Disney’s version of Beauty and the Beast notes, there is a tension in the film world between animation as genre (which pushes voters toward the “animated feature” category), and animation as technique (which pushes in the other direction).