Perception is something you don’t always think about when it comes to certain genres of TV and movies. Yet at The Oscars, when the “Best Animated Feature” was to be awarded, the hosts of the show admitted to all that they thought animation movies were “just for kids” and that adults “couldn’t stand the content” because it was tailored solely to the children. The animation industry as a whole did not take kindly to this statement due to how emphatically false it was. And two people who spoke the loudest so far were the two main men behind Spider-Man Into The Spider-Verse. You know, the Oscar award-winning film for best animated feature a few years back?
Phil Lord and Chris Miller had this to say on the matter in an open letter:
“Framing the five Academy Award nominees for best animated feature as a corporate product for kids that parents must begrudgingly endure could be dismissed as simply careless,” Lord and Miller wrote in the piece. “But to those of us who have dedicated our lives to making animated films, that carelessness has become routine. The head of a major animation studio once told an assembly of animators that, if we played our cards right, we would one day ‘graduate to live-action.’ Years later, an exec at another studio said a certain animated movie we made was so enjoyable that it reminded them of ‘a real movie.'”
While there are plenty of animated movies and TV shows that are “tailored to kids”, that’s not all encompassing. Look at Pixar movies that resonate with adults as well as kids. Or animated series like Avatar The Last Airbender, She-Ra and the Princesses of Power. And of course, anime, which constantly pushes boundaries.
Animation allows people to tell different kinds of stories, and that is to be praised, not lumped into a “just for kids” perception.