The COVID-19 pandemic has forced the Academy Of Motion Picture Arts And Sciences to change rules and eligibility requirements for the 2021 Oscars, making movies of streaming services eligible to win the golden statuettes.
The Academy has tweaked its Oscar eligibility rules in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. The change is not permanent, and will apply to films released this year, reports variety.com.
During a meeting on Tuesday, the board of governors approved a temporary hold on the requirement that a film needs a seven-day theatrical run in a commercial theater in Los Angeles to qualify for the Oscars.
However, there’s a catch and not all movies premiering on a streaming service will be eligible for Oscar. To get in Oscar contention, the streaming movie must have already had a planned theatrical release.
“The Academy firmly believes there is no greater way to experience the magic of movies than to see them in a theatre,” said Academy president David Rubin and CEO Dawn Hudson, adding: “Our commitment to that is unchanged and unwavering. Nonetheless, the historically tragic COVID-19 pandemic necessitates this temporary exception to our awards eligibility rules. The Academy supports our members and colleagues during this time of uncertainty. We recognise the importance of their work being seen and also celebrated, especially now, when audiences appreciate movies more than ever.”
Once movie theaters are allowed to re-open, the seven-day window will once again be required for eligibility.
The Academy also shared that it will eliminate an Oscar category. The sound mixing and sound editing categories will be combined into one award, reducing the total number of categories presented on the show to 23.
And in an effort to become more carbon neutral, the Academy prohibited DVD screeners for the 94th Oscars gala. It also announced that for the first time all Academy members will be invited to participate in the preliminary round of voting for international feature films.
The 93rd Oscars will be held on February 28, 2021.(IANS)