HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2 is Top Dog at Annie Awards

How to Train Your Dragon 2 a winner at the Annies!

The 42nd Annual Annie Awards, which honors the excellence of film and television/broadcast animation, awarded How to Train Your Dragon 2 the award for Best Animated Feature Film for 2014.

The DreamWorks film also won awards for Best Director (Dean DeBlois), Best Feature Character Design (Fabio Lignini), Best Storyboarding (Truong “Tron” Son Mai) and Best Music (John Power, Jonsi).

Considering the financial downtown the animation studio has suffered from their other animated films that were released in 2014, this is a pretty big win for them, although we’re not sure this is going to pull the release date for How to Train Your Dragon 3 back up to 2017 after they recently announced the release date had to be moved to 2018 to accommodate for that loss.  However, it should give them ample time to create another exciting and visually entertaining film that is worthy of the franchise.

Despite winning the top honor at the Annies, DWA did not come away with the most wins.  That honor belongs to Disney.

Disney came away with the most awards, nine for Disney Television Animation alone and 11 overall. Disney Television Animation’s “Gravity Falls” picked up the nod for television/broadcast production for a children’s audience. “Disney Mickey Mouse” picked up the most individual Annies including directing in a TV/broadcast production (Aaron Springer), writing (Darrick Bachman), editorial (Illya Owens), music (Christopher Willis) and voice acting (Bill Farmer.) “Wander Over Yonder” added to the haul with awards in character animation (Justin Nichols) and character design (Benjamin Balistreri). And Narina Skolova added a win for her production design work on “Mickey Shorts.”

Big Hero 6 added an award to the Disney’s total for animated effects in an animated production that went to Michael Kaschalk, Peter DeMund, David Hutchins, Henrik Falt, John Kosnik. And “Feast,” the animated short that precedes “Big Hero 6″ on the bigscreen, won the prize for short film.

Big Hero 6 wins Best Animated Effects at Annie Awards
Big Hero 6 is awarded Best Animated Effects at Annie Awards

As for what’s next for Dragon during the awards season, there’s one more big one that has yet to come:

The win for “Dragon” gives the film some momentum going into the Academy Awards on Feb. 22, where it will compete with “Big Hero 6,” “The Boxtrolls,” and GKids’ “Song of the Sea” and “The Tale of the Princess Kaguya.” It has already won the Golden Globe, so the Annie win is the second major kudo it’s picked up during awards season.

While the only other film I’ve seen from the list of nominations is Big Hero 6, I think I’m putting my vote on Hiccup and Toothless.  It was just such a superb film overall, vibrant and flawless in it’s animation, humorous, dramatic, and emotional.  Plus, dragons.

Annie Awards Best Animated Feature