Along with the new year comes the annual tradition of speculating about Academy Award favorites. There is an intricate science that goes into these predictions, particularly for the best known awards like Best Picture and Director, and it's nice to see that a children's film has become one of 2008's wild cards. Many Oscar trackers (shown above) are saying things like that there are more or less four films that we can expect to get the Best Picture nod, leaving room for one more, like WALL-E, that wouldn't normally get in there (due to anti-animation/anti-kids' film bias) but in actuality quite deserves to. It would be great if WALL-E crosses over from the Best Animated Feature category. Although I don't put much weight in the Oscars--I don't know what's won Best Picture since around 1992--it's still a visible enough forum that it would be wonderful to see an animated children's film crack that egg. It was Beauty and the Beast that first got me interested in children's filmmaking, and it would be great to see WALL-E follow in its footsteps with a nomination.