UpA record 20 animated films will vie for Oscar glory next year in a contest stuffed with wildly popular 3D offerings, including UP and A Christmas Carol.

Most years only see three nominations for Best Animated Film at the Academy Awards, but this year five are allowed because 20 movies have been submitted, breaking the 16 submissions threshold.

The last time five nominations were permitted was in 2002, when Hayao Miyazaki's Spirited Away pushed the submissions to 17 and won the Oscar. UpA record 20 animated films will vie for Oscar glory next year in a contest stuffed with wildly popular 3D offerings, including UP and A Christmas Carol.

Most years only see three nominations for Best Animated Film at the Academy Awards, but this year five are allowed because 20 movies have been submitted, breaking the 16 submissions threshold.

The last time five nominations were permitted was in 2002, when Hayao Miyazaki's Spirited Away pushed the submissions to 17 and won the Oscar.

The category was only introduced in 2001 but is becoming ever more important as animated films continue to thrive. And now more than ever animated films are also 3D.

The films submitted for next year's prestigious award also include Fantastic Mr Fox, Monsters vs Aliens, Coraline, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs and Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel. Nominations will be announced on the 2 February with the ceremony on 7 March.

Fear not if your favourite film is also an animation because they can win the Best Picture award too. However, an animated film hasn't won this award since 1991 when Beauty and the Beast triumphed. And in 2008 there was criticism when Wall-E, a hugely popular film was not nominated for Best Picture, despite receiving overwhelmingly positive reviews from critics and moviegoers.

Past winners of the Best Animated Film Oscar are:

2002 - Shrek
2003 - Spirited Away
2004 - Finding Nemo
2005 - The Incredibles
2006 - Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit
2007 - Happy Feet
2008 - Ratatouille
2009 - Wall-E
CATEGORIES Movies, Hot Topic, Awards