Animation has a long and storied history, one filled with brilliant works of imagination. There are too many genius animated films for the medium to be looked down upon as much as it is in American popular culture. Only three animated films have ever been nominated for the Best Picture Oscar (Up, Toy Story 3, and Beauty and the Beast), and only one (Beauty And The Beast) has won.
Similarly, the Best Animated Feature Film Oscar only came into existence in 2001, after the Academy insisted for decades that there just weren’t enough animated films being produced to warrant a separate award. There have only been 17 winners of this award, starting with Shrek and ending with last year’s Coco. Pixar has dominated the category, with the animation company winning ten of the 17 awards. Even worse, there are usually only three animated films nominated, due to a rule that states that there will only be five nominations if there are sixteen or more films submitted (mostly every other category always has five or more nominations). One can’t help but wonder how many brilliant animated films before 2001 have been ignored by popular culture at large.
There are many misconceptions about animated film as well: they exist far beyond the realm of Disney (though Disney of course had a large hand in popularizing them in the 20th century). They’re also not always for children, and they require a lot more care and expertise than one might think. There are so many types of animation as well: hand drawn, computer animation, claymation—the list goes on and on. In fact, there’s a whole world of animation for people to enjoy, and American film alone barely scratches the surface.
Without further ado, here are the 61 best animated films of all time.