Flashback: Oscars' Least Exciting Biggest Upset

by urbanemovies | created - 5 months ago | updated - 5 months ago | Public

The least exciting envelope reveal in Oscar's history happened at 1957's 29th Academy Awards ceremony in the 'Best Short Subject Cartoon' category. All the nominees in the category that year were for the same producer, Stephen Bosustow, the same production company, United Productions of America (UPA) and the same theatrical distributor, Columbia Pictures. This was the only time in Oscars' history that all the category nominees were for the same individual. As a result, it left little suspense when the card inside the envelope was finally read aloud.

The nomination sweep itself was the true surprise of these Oscars. Given upstart animator UPA had only begun its foray into theatrical animated shorts seven years earlier. Further, its distribution partner, Columbia Pictures historically had been an also-ran in a field long dominated by the animation divisions of Disney, Warner Bros., MGM, and Paramount. The sweep of nominations was a true David vs. Goliath story, except that David had to defeat four Goliaths. A perfect storm of factors conspired to make the category that year, the least exciting and the biggest upset, both at the same time.

Which of these Oscar-nominated animated shorts that were part of the least exciting envelope reveal, but the biggest upset contest in Oscars' history, is your favorite?

Discuss the topic here.

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1. The Jaywalker (1956)

7 min | Animation, Short

Milton Muffet is confessed poor pedestrian. He's addicted to "the most awful, habit-forming vice" man falls prey to, jaywalking.

Director: Robert Cannon | Star: Eugene Bollay

Votes: 118

Animated Short Film Link: The Jaywalker Producer: Stephen Bosustow Production Company: United Productions of America (UPA) Theatrical Distributor: Columbia Pictures

2. Gerald McBoing! Boing! on Planet Moo (1956)

Approved | 7 min | Animation, Short, Adventure

While meeting a new friend, Gerald is abducted by aliens and whisked to the planet Moo. The king of Moo mistakenly thinks that all Earthlings - like Gerald - speak only in sound effects, ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Cannon | Star: Marvin Miller

Votes: 292

Animated Short Film Link: Gerald McBoing! Boing! on Planet Moo Producer: Stephen Bosustow Production Company: United Productions of America (UPA) Theatrical Distributor: Columbia Pictures

3. Magoo's Puddle Jumper (1956)

6 min | Family, Animation, Short

At a used car lot, Mr. Magoo is intent on buying a car for his nephew Waldo. He is slick talked into buying an old clunker thanks to a shifty salesman but he drives it off anyway. ... See full summary »

Director: Pete Burness | Stars: Jim Backus, Daws Butler

Votes: 327

Animated Short Film Link: Magoo's Puddle Jumper Producer: Stephen Bosustow Production Company: United Productions of America (UPA) Theatrical Distributor: Columbia Pictures



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