Three films are nominated in the Best Animated Film category at the 2011 Academy Awards: ''How to Train Your Dragon,'' ''The Illusionist'' and ''Toy Story 3.''
In November of 2010, a total of fifteen animated features were accepted by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for consideration in the category. From there, the list was narrowed down to the three nominees. According to the rules of the Academy, if 16 animated films had made the semi-final round, the category would have expanded to five nominees, as it did in 2002 and again in 2009.
All three movies nominated for the 2011 Best Animated Film Academy Award were also nominated for Golden Globes. ''Toy Story 3'' took home the Golden Globe for Best Animated Feature Film in January of 2011.
The Best Animated Feature Film Oscar is a relatively new category, having been established in 2001. The first movie to win in the category was ''Shrek.'' Since then, winners have included ''Spirited Away,'' ''Finding Nemo,'' ''The Incredibles,'' ''Happy Feet,'' ''Ratatouille,'' ''WALL-E'' and ''Up.''
Animated films traditionally do not garner Best Picture nominations - in fact, it's happened only three times: ''Beauty and the Beast'' was nominated in 1991, ''Up'' in 2009 and ''Toy Story 3'' this year.