A record 20 films have been submitted for best animated feature at the Academy Awards.
As long as at least 16 films qualify, there will be five nominees in the feature-length animation category.
The category has had only three nominees most years, but 2009 has been a prolific year for animation. The only previous year when there were five nominees came in 2002, when 17 animated films were submitted.
Submissions include a wide variety of styles, including the computer animation of such hits as "Up," "Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs" and "Monsters vs. Aliens"; the stop-motion animation of "Coraline," "Fantastic Mr. Fox" and "Mary and Max"; and the hand-drawn animation of "The Princess and the Frog" and "Ponyo."
Other films submitted are "Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel," "Astro Boy," "Battle for Terra," "Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs," "Disney's A Christmas Carol," "The Dolphin _ Story of a Dreamer," "The Missing Lynx," "9," "Planet 51," "The Secret of Kells," "Tinker Bell and the Lost Treasure" and "A Town Called Panic."
Some films have yet to complete a weeklong theatrical run in Los Angeles to qualify for the Oscars. Academy rules for the category also state that a "significant number of the major characters must be animated, and animation must figure in no less than 75 percent of the picture's running time."