I think we all know that Ratatouille will win the 2008 Oscar for Best Animated Feature. So, do we really need to waste time nominating others? Yesterday, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences named 12 movies eligible for the award, a shortlist that will eventually be pared down to three finalists when the Oscar nominees are announced in January. Had there been at least 16 eligible animated films this year, the number of nominees would be five, but with only 12, the category will only see three contenders. What could they be? Certainly Ratatouille will be one of them, and it's my guess that Persepolis and Surf's Up (the Academy loves penguins) will be the ones to join the Disney/Pixar sure-thing. I'm on the fence about Beowulf, especially after reading Scott's praise this morning, but I think it has a good chance of eventually being disqualified from being nominated. There's some debate already about whether or not it is technically an animated film. Another movie I have doubts about is Alvin and the Chipmunks, which seems to be primarily live-action. Last year, Arthur and the Invisibles ended up out of the race due to its own matter of having too much live footage.

The full list of animated features: Ratatouille; Persepolis; Shrek the Third, which should be the first of its series to not get a nomination; The Simpsons Movie, which the Academy should deem too television for its award; Bee Movie, which would only get a nomination if the Academy needed Seinfeld to attend the ceremony -- and hopefully it doesn't; TMNT (aka Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles); Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film for Theaters; Alvin and the Chipmunks; Beowulf; Meet the Robinsons; Surf's Up; and Tekkonkinkreet, a Japanese film by American director Michael Arias, which could be a dark horse if Persepolis wasn't the favorite for the necessary foreign animated selection. I'm not sure why Happily N'Ever After was excluded, but I guess it wouldn't have a chance anyway. What do you think should win, or at least make the nomination round?