New York Times profiles John Canemaker’s “The Moon and the Son”, considered the front-runner in the category.

Animation World Magazine profiles all of the nominees, including “One Man Band”, the only short that will probably be seen by a mass audience, because it will be shown in front of Pixar’s Cars.

I often muse (so forgive me if you’ve heard this a thousand times) that the Oscar telecast should show the nominated short films before the show. Short makers make so little money and get such little respect, the t.v. revenues and exposure would be beneficial. Plus, when it’s time to give out the Oscars for shorts, the home audience might actually care who wins.

UPDATE: Apparently you will be able to see the nominated shorts:

The Starz FilmCenter this week offers a program of the nominated short films in both categories in a package that’s being shown in select theaters across the country and which eventually will become available on other platforms, including Shorts TV on mobile phones.

See also:

In a complicated deal that’s reportedly been in the works since before Oscar nominations were announced, Magnolia Pictures and Shorts International have teamed up to show animation and live-action short film nominees in at least 11 cities around the country before the March 5 ceremony.

The public screenings begin on Feb. 24 at the Laemmle Fairfax theater in Los Angeles and the Cinema Village in New York, along with theaters in San Francisco, Berkeley, Seattle, Denver, Detroit and Atlanta. Austin, Portland and Chicago will have screenings the week after.

Sounds like multiple people are taking credit for this. Two distibutor-of-Oscar-nominated-short-films enter, one distributor leave!

UPDATE 2/27/06: Ebert has capsule reviews of all the nominated shorts, live and animated.