Executives at movie giant Disney have pulled all the studio's films from competing at the annual Annie Awards following a dispute over the judging criteria. Disney-Pixar blockbuster "Up" landed the top prize at this year's ceremony, which honors the best in animation, and films including box office hit "Toy Story 3" were expected to sweep the board at the 2011 show.
But Disney bosses have now announced they will no longer be putting films forward for nomination after they failed to agree with Annie Awards bosses at the Association Internationale du Film d'Animation (ASIFA) over the way the prizes are judged.
A statement from Disney-Pixar boss Ed Catmull reads, "After more than a year of discussions with the ASIFA board, we have regretfully decided to withdraw from the organization and no longer participate in the annual Annie Awards. We believe there is an issue with the way the Annies are judged, and have been seeking a mutually agreeable solution with the board. Although some initial steps have been taken, the board informed us that no further changes would be made to address our concerns."
The dispute is said to have been sparked by a disagreement over which ASIFA members, many working for rival companies, are allowed to vote for the film nominees, according to Variety.com. But ASIFA chief Antran Manoogian is convinced Disney-Pixar films could still be included in future awards shows, as producers and artists may still enter their own work for consideration.
The next Annie Awards will take place in Los Angeles on February 5, 2011.