You Are My Sunshine (Sunshine Blogger Award)

Sunshine Blogger Award logo

Hey everyone! I know this isn’t the How to Train Your Dragon review, but I wanted to prepare this post first because, to my surprise, I have been nominated for the Sunshine Blogger Award! The nomination comes courtesy of UpOnTheShelf, so many thanks to you for the recognition, and please go and check out her site when you have time. I didn’t realise I’d been nominated until just the other day, as I’ve been having a bit of a rough time lately and haven’t been checking my stats and pingbacks as often as usual, but I’m glad I found out – it’s much appreciated, as I’ve never been nominated for a blogging award before (unless I’ve missed one somewhere down the line, in which case I apologise).

Now, according to the rules, the Sunshine Blogger functions on a kind of “pay it forward” structure, where you must do the following once you’ve been nominated:

1. Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
2. Answer the eleven questions from the blogger who nominated you.
3. Nominate eleven more bloggers for the award.
4. Create eleven new questions for the nominees to answer.

(The numbers aren’t super strict, judging from other responses; if you have less questions or nominees, it’s not the end of the world).

With that established, let’s get on to these questions!


1. What performance in film, tv, theatre, etc. has moved you the most?

There are so many excellent performances out there, it’s hard to choose! In the world of animation specifically, some of my favourites include Val Kilmer’s complex portrayal of Moses in The Prince of Egypt (1998), Eli Marienthal’s mature turn as Hogarth Hughes in The Iron Giant (1999), Albert Brooks’ sensitive, understated role as Marlin in Finding Nemo (2003) and Tia Carrere’s heartfelt performance as the harassed, grieving teenager struggling to raise her sister in Lilo & Stitch (2002). I was so invested in all of these characters and their journeys, and a lot of that was down to the astonishing voice work these actors provided.

Beyond animation, one of my favourite performances is that of Logan Lerman as Charlie in The Perks of Being a Walflower (2012), a role I related to hard (aside from the abuse part, thankfully). Some other performances that truly moved me include Bérénice Bejo as Peppy in The Artist (2011), Tom Hanks as Chuck in Cast Away (2000), Robert Sean Leonard as Neil in Dead Poets Society (1989), Eddie Redmayne as Stephen Hawking in The Theory of Everything (2014), Haley Joel Osment as David in A.I.: Artificial Intelligence (2001), Taraji P. Henson as Katherine Johnson in Hidden Figures (2016), Leonardo DiCaprio as Romeo in Romeo + Juliet (1996) and James Dean as Cal in East of Eden (1955). I’m not much of a TV person, which is why this list is so film-centric.

2. What is your all-time favourite movie-going experience?

Recently, I’ve had a great time – but for very different reasons – at films like Hidden Figures (2016), Dunkirk (2017), Love, Simon (2018) and Little Women (2019), the latter of which I actually saw twice. Back in 2012, I also saw Perks of Being a Wallflower twice, and I did the same for Hugo the year before (given modern ticket prices, it’s rare I see films twice in theatres). Around that same time, I remember having a blast with the 3D re-releases of The Lion King (1994) and Beauty and the Beast (1991), neither of which I saw in theatres the first time around. In 2017, around the time I started my blog, I also travelled well out of my way to catch The Red Turtle at an obscure arthouse cinema and was blown away by it – it was so worth the trip! Being first in line for the local premiere of the final part of the Harry Potter franchise in 2011 was another highlight, although more for the build-up with my friends than the film itself (we even appeared in the paper).

As a kid, some of the standout cinema trips included Toy Story 2 in 1999, Chicken Run and Dinosaur in 2000 and The Incredibles for my twelfth birthday in 2004, but generally I didn’t go to the cinema much as a kid (which explains how I missed so many classic Disney films).

3. What property that hasn’t been touched yet would you love to see adapted into another medium?

You know, it might sound odd, but I’ve always felt that Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre (1847) would work well in animation, as would Daphne Du Maurier’s Rebecca (1938); these kind of romantic period dramas really lend themselves well to the animated medium and I’d love to see what one of the great directors could do with them (as long as they don’t turn them into musicals, which probably would have been the case in the nineties).

4. Are there any acclaimed movies (Oscar winners, anything on AFI’s Greatest Movies or 1000 Movies You Need to See lists, etc.) that you’ve seen but wished you hadn’t?

Well, The Graduate (1967) springs to mind; I saw it for the first time last year and was hugely disappointed. The characters are all so unlikeable that I just couldn’t care about any of them at all. I know, I know, I’m a tasteless pleb, but I couldn’t help it. The same criticism goes for American Beauty (1999), another so-called classic I’ve always hated, but that’s just my opinion – I know these two are beloved by most, so please don’t kill me.

5. If you could switch out one actor with a totally different one in any movie, who would it be and why?

I don’t like slandering actors if I can help it, as I know that they can often be victims of weak direction or poor scripts, but I did find a lot of the casting decisions in the Harry Potter films rather lacklustre. Bonnie Wright’s turn as Ginny stands out as a particularly rough one, but I’m not sure who else I would have preferred in the role – maybe someone like Emily Browning? Although she was too old at the time and not British, so that wouldn’t have worked very well.

Also, while I do enjoy Chris Pine’s work as Jack Frost in Rise of the Guardians and am in no way criticising his performance, the fact that the role was nearly played by Leonardo freaking DiCaprio has always made me lament for what might have been. He has still yet to do an animated film, as of this writing. Come on, Leo, just one family film… please? I promise you can go back to being dark and gritty after that.

6. Is there any particular work that inspired you to follow the path you are on now?

Not especially; my interest in animation beyond childhood started in my late teens, as I discovered a variety of Disney films I’d missed out on and then stumbled upon Studio Ghibli. Seeing Spirited Away (2001) for the first time – even in bite-sized parts on YouTube – showed me just what animation could do, but my love for the medium was inspired by more than just that one film.

As for choosing to start a blog, that was simple. I had an English degree that was doing me absolutely no good whatsoever in my retail positions, so I thought I might as well put it to good use as a hobby! In all seriousness, I’ve always enjoyed writing, and I even wrote a few “novels” in my school days (they’re atrocious, full of melodrama and clichés, but they still get me laughing); from creative writing, it was only a short hop from there to blogging. I do intend to get back to fiction again in time, but I’d probably have to wrap up Feeling Animated first so I could give it my full attention. That won’t be any time soon though; I have far too much wonderful animation to explore yet!

7. Pick a movie you’d love to see a reverse live-action remake of, i.e. a live-action movie remade as an animated movie.

It might sound odd, but I think Inception (2010) would look amazing in animation if done properly. It’s just the kind of mature story that would get audiences to take the medium more seriously, and it’s so sleek and stylish in live-action that I can only imagine how gorgeous it would be in hand-drawn animation. (I’m aware that it was partly inspired by Paprika {2006}, which is on my list!) Friz Lang’s Metropolis (1927) might also work, given how early animation was so tied to German expressionist cinema, and something like The Red Shoes (1948) has potential as well. Then there are certain family films like Hugo, which I think is crying out to be animated with its warm, inventive atmosphere.

I did briefly think about whether Titanic (1997) would be suitable for the medium, given James Cameron’s romantic take on it… but then I remembered that it’s already been done. Twice. Badly. Oh, the horror.

8. If a loved one was to serenade you, what song would you want them to sing?

Haha, oh god… I mean, I’ve always had a weakness for Des’ree’s Kissing You (1996), but Mariah Carey’s Always Be My Baby (also 1996) gets me too, I’m such a sap. Something mushy like that, you know?

9. What genre mashups do you enjoy (horror/comedy, fantasy/sci-fi, etc.)

Hm… I’ve never really thought about it, but I suppose a horror/western could be quite fun, not that I think I’ve ever seen any. And the sci-fi/fantasy genres have a lot of room for overlap.

10. What story do you believe deserves a proper continuation?

I’m not one to advocate for unnecessary sequels in general, whether it be in film or in literature. All good things must come to an end, as they say, and nothing bugs me more than seeing a good, solidly concluded story getting drawn out beyond its natural ending for the sake of profit. That said, one film which I think deserved a much better sequel than it got was The Incredibles – there was so much potential for a new story featuring the Parr kids as young adults, yet instead we were given one which picked up literally seconds after the last film ended. It felt like such a waste! I honestly wouldn’t mind if Brad Bird made a third one which further explored the kids’ future careers as supers.

11. Where do you consider your home to be?

I still live with my parents as it’s too expensive to move out, but I’m lucky in that I get along well with them, so I don’t find it too restrictive. I’ve always loved travelling and try to visit new places every year if I can (I’m considering Svalbard or Mexico for next year, once the current mess is over), but it’s always nice to get back home to familiar surroundings. What a sentimental old fool I can be!


There we go, eleven questions answered! And now for my own nominees for Sunshine Blogger:

Parka Blogs (great for art book reviews)
Animation Commendation
Disney Odyssey
Great Disney Movie Ride
Unshaved Mouse
Dr Grob’s Animation Review
Swanpride’s Movies and Lyrics
The Disney Connection
Waking Snow White (blog is now defunct, but still worth checking out)
The Cool Kat’s Reviews
WaitButWhy (not a film blogger and probably won’t respond, but what the heck)


Congratulations guys! Here are my eleven new questions for you:

1. What was the first film you remember seeing in theatres?
2. Which popular film did you think failed to live up to its hype?
3. Who would play you in a film about your life?
4. What music do you listen to for inspiration while working?
5. How long have you been blogging for now?
6. What inspired you to start blogging?
7. What’s the most valuable piece of advice you can give to other bloggers / potential blog starters?
8. Who is your historical hero (if you have one)?
9. What hobby would you get into if time and money weren’t an issue?
10. If you could travel anywhere in the world without financial worries, where would you go?
11. Who inspires you to be better?


Hope you have fun with it, if you choose to accept the nomination! Thanks again to UpOnTheShelf for my own nomination, and I’ll see you all again soon with another review. Take care and staaay animated!


8 Replies to “You Are My Sunshine (Sunshine Blogger Award)”

  1. Hmm, an animated Inception or Jane Eyre would be really great! I’ve always wanted to visit Svalbard myself.

    Thanks for the shout-out, I’ll answer your questions here if you don’t mind:

    1. The first film I saw in theaters was Finding Nemo. I didn’t grow up going to theaters when I was younger than that.
    2. There are many popular films that didn’t live up to its hype for me. One example is Grave of the Fireflies.
    3. If it wasn’t for the fact that he’s white, I would have loved Benedict Cumberbatch to play me in a movie about myself, lol!
    4. I don’t really listen to music for inspiration while working.
    5. I think this will be my 8th year blogging this year, wow!
    6. I started blogging because I always wanted a way to share my thoughts about Disney and animation with others rather than boring people in my personal lives who wouldn’t wanna hear about it, lol!
    7. I would advise new bloggers to start off with a project. That way, they won’t be thinking of ideas on what to write and will have something to get their blog started with. In the meantime, they will be able to be found by others and find others as they blog more and more.
    8. There are a lot of people I look up to from history, but dunno if that’s the same thing as a “hero”.
    9. I do want to delve into puppetry, ventriloquism, and voice acting. Just need to make time for them.
    10. I would love to travel to many places including Svalbard.
    11. People who have overcome personal issues in their lives inspire me to be better.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. No problem! Eight years blogging, very impressive! I feel like I’ve been doing it forever and it’s only been three years for me. I’d love to be a voice actor too, don’t know how I’d go about getting into it though. I expect you need an agent to begin with. Glad to hear someone out there shares my Svalbard dream; nobody I know has heard of it!

      Liked by 1 person

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