Something is happening.

Among American film critics, WALL-E is emerging as a favorite for the year’s Best Picture. The L.A. Film Critics just joined TIME’s Richard Corliss and The New Yorker’s Anthony Lane, heralding Pixar’s movie as the Best Film of 2008. The only film receiving similar love is Slumdog Millionaire.

Will the Academy take notice? Will they realize that animated films are works of art worthy of comparison with live-action films? Will WALL-E be nominated for Best Picture?

I hope so.

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