'The Simpsons' qualifies for Oscar with animated short 'Longest Daycare'

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the-simpsons-3d-animated-short-maggie-simpson-the-longest-daycare-ice-age-4.jpgWe already know "Family Guy" creator Seth MacFarlane is hosting next year's Academy Awards ceremony, and now comes news that FOX's other animated stalwart, "The Simpsons," is in the hunt for an Oscar nomination.

"The Simpsons" short film spinoff "Maggie Simpson in 'The Longest Daycare,'" directed by David Silverman and written by "Simpsons" executive producers Matt Groening and James L. Brooks made the shortlist of 10 animated short films vying for five nomination slots.

"Longest Daycare" played in theaters before summer release "Ice Age: Continental Drift" and follows the littlest Simpson, Maggie, as she attempts to outwit her nemesis Baby Gerald at the Ayn Rand School for Tots.

It's unusual for animated short contenders to have received a wide theatrical release, but it's also the case for another of this year's contenders: Disney Animation Studios' "Paperman" which is currently playing in theaters before the Disney hit "Wreck-It Ralph" and could be the favorite to win on Oscar night.

Odds on "Daycare" landing a nomination are harder to call. 2007's "The Simpsons Movie" qualified for Oscar consideration in the Best Animated Feature Film category, but failed to earn a nomination. Fans of the show will probably remember the 2011 episode skewering the Oscars and the Animated Feature category specifically.

If the "Simpsons" short does make the list, it'll be interesting to see if MacFarlane has anything to say about it during the Oscar telecast.

Nominations for the 85th Academy Awards will be announced Jan. 10, 2013
Photo/Video credit: 20th Century Fox