Beauty and the Beast was the first animated film to be nominated for a Best Picture Oscar. Not Snow White. Not Fantasia. It took over 60 years for the Academy to acknowledge the medium as a worthy candidate to fill one of its vaunted five slots. It took another 18 years and an extra five slots for such a film to breakthrough again. Now, what will it take for one to actually win it all? The answer may have just opened this past weekend.

It is way too early into the film year to be putting any long-term stock into what may even be nominated at this point. Never mind even winning. We are still a month away from Christopher Nolan's Inception, a film midway through July that is possibly only the third serious candidate for a Best Picture nomination. Shutter Islandmight be long forgotten by the time we make it to November, but chances are that Toy Story 3 will not be.