Oscars trim telecast, take awards off air and add 'popular' category

Stephen King’s Top Horror Movie Adaptations

Stephen King’s Top Horror Movie Adaptations

In a tweet Wednesday morning, the Academy announced it's planning a new category "around achievement in popular film".

Reaction to the announcement was mixed, with many calling the "popular film" award a cheapening of the Oscars, while others lamented over the lack of recognition for stunt performers, voice actors, and motion-capture performers. Some will be presented during commercial breaks at the Dolby Theatre, with the key moments being edited into the broadcast later. While details of the new honor weren't revealed in a recent letter sent out to Academy members, the move has already been criticized.

As of now, it's unclear if these changes will be in effect during this winter's upcoming Oscars, or the 2020 telecast. They argue the change "will not affect awards eligibility dates or the voting process".

Next year's Oscars, which is scheduled for February 24, is unchanged. So if they're classified as "popular" films, will they also be eligible for Best Picture?

The addition of a Popular Film category is surely an attempt to make the award show a more appealing event to casual moviegoers who don't necessarily care about anything outside of blockbusters.

Ironically, the Academy will look like it had a great idea here next Oscarcast, but a lot of that will be if the billion-dollar ceiling-shattering zeitgeist Marvel movie Black Panther gets nominations, especially if the film is in the mix for Best Picture.

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It may be good news to hear that the show will be limited to three hours - some of us could go with even less, considering there's also the red carpet pre-show - but that means not all wins will be shown live. "In creating this award, the Board of Governors supports broad-based consideration of excellence in all films".

The Academy is making some changes to the Oscars.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Academy's board of governors has approved the changes in the wake of falling viewing figures for the annual movie awards. Which is a huge bummer for those of us who used to tune in exclusively to see who'd win the award for Best Costume Design.

To keep the ceremony to three hours, the academy vows to present only select categories live.

It did not say which of the 24 awards handed out on Oscars night would be shifted.

What we do know, though, is that the Academy has just taken a major step in the direction of focusing more on blockbusters, which are often viewed as a kind of art form unto themselves. The date for the 2019 show, February 24, remains unchanged. The telecast is an important showcase for the film industry, and nominated movies typically attract a new wave of ticket buyers.

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