See, there's this continuing kerfluffle over motion capture. Is it new? Is it old? And when is it animation, and when isn't it animation? For instance, we've got Alvin vs. Beowulf, where a chipmunk isn't fit for Academy consideration, but a muscular, mo-cap warrior is:
Wondering just how complicated the Academy's rules can be on animation? Ask the producers of "Alvin and the Chipmunks."
Even though the Fox movie stars three CG rodents, the Acad's animated feature screening committee (which is made up of half animation professionals and half non-experts) concluded that the otherwise live-action pic isn't eligible for a best animated feature nomination because it doesn't fulfill the rule that "animation must figure in no less than 75% of the picture's running time."
It's simple really. Live action under animation doesn't count as live action (and never has); live action beside animation does. And if you have too much l.a. in your movie, your movie doesn't make the cut for the pretty gold statuette.
And Variety, besides offering the article above, provides a brief history of motion capture ... going all the way back to when it was actually invented:
... explains animation historian Leonard Maltin: "The first real motion capture occurred when Dave Fleischer put on a clown suit and his brother Max traced his movements, one frame at a time, in 1915. They patented the device that enabled them to do this, and called it a rotoscope."
Which of course was used extensively in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Gulliver's Travels and various other animated epics. I explain this to newspaper reporters from time to time. They're usually surprised and amazed: "You mean this mo-cap thing isn't that new?!"
Actually, no. It isn't.