This article endeavours to give some insight into how the relationship between art, animationand live-action film, on the one hand, and reality on the other affects the meaningattributed by the viewer. A distinction is made between recognizing meaning and attributingit, whereby recognition is only possible when what is being shown contains elements of reality.Recognition acts as a catalyst for attribution. Psychological research has shown that peopleattribute an extremely wide range of meanings to the simplest of animation films (from genderto emotions to intentions). Attributing a genre to a film is fundamental for any viewer andwhen doing so people appear to rely on the gap between what they have seen and their ownreality. This is precisely where the difference between animation and live-action arises. Bothkinds of films allow the viewer to become immersed in the story, however, with live-actionviewers are steered from non-fiction to fiction whereas with animation they are steered fromfiction to non-fiction.

Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision
Tijdschrift voor Mediageschiedenis
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TMG Journal for Media History; Vol 15, No 1 (2012): Animatie; 63-73

Visch, Valentijn, & Tan, Ed. (2012). Kijken naar animatie. Tussen herkennen van werkelijkheid en toeschrijven van komedie. Tijdschrift voor Mediageschiedenis, 15(1), 63–73. doi:10.18146/tmg.415