Ever wondered what goes into drawing your favorite animated characters? Ahead of the 96th Oscars, the Academy sat down with some of this year's nominees for Best Animated Feature Film and Best Animated Short Film for a demonstration of how they concept and draw their creations — by drawing the moment in which their characters receive an Oscar.

Watch the video above for an exclusive drawing session with directors Joaquim Dos Santos and Justin K. Thompson (Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse), director Pablo Berger (Robot Dreams), and animator Jared Mathews (Ninety-Five Sense), and see their final drawings, below.

The five films nominated for Best Animated Feature Film are The Boy and the Heron, Elemental, Nimona, Robot Dreams, and Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse.

The five films nominated for Best Animated Short Film are Letter to a Pig, Ninety-Five Senses, Our Uniform, Pachyderme, and War Is Over! Inspired by the Music of John & Yoko.


Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse

"We had so many different styles in our movie, and getting them all on-screen was definitely a challenge. But the way we did that was by having a crew of a thousand people. Everything you see, every change of color, every piece of fabric and texture, it had to be put there by an artist, and so we were just lucky to have a thousand people. If we didn't, there's no way we could have made a movie on such a massive scale." — Thompson


Robot Dreams

"This was done by the character designer, Daniel Fernandez Casas... If I find myself in the same place as Dog and Robot, I'm going to be like Dog. I don't have a tail, but the tears — I'm sure — they will flow. For me, as a director, if I got such a high recognition, I would think of all the people who held me on the way. It would be a very emotional moment." — Berger


Ninety-Five Senses

"There's an acting part to animation. Trying to capture that in just a drawing is hard, but it's really fulfilling. I'm drawing Coy in one of his best memories, when he was at the pool... Coy found an Oscar and grandma's not happy about it." — Mathews

A.frame, the digital magazine of the Academy, is excited to celebrate and honor the nominees of the 96th Oscars across several branches by spotlighting their nominated films, craftsmanship, and personal stories. For more on this year's nominees, take a look at our Oscars hub.


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