Culture&Arts

Oscars To Shorten Ceremony, Add 'Popular Film' Category

Oscars To Shorten Ceremony, Add 'Popular Film' Category

The Oscars are adding a new category to honor popular films and promising a brisk three-hour ceremony on a much earlier air date of February 9, 2020.

I believe we must improvise, adapt and overcome everything that comes our way and there is no doubt that the world has changed around the Oscars. They argue the change "will not affect awards eligibility dates or the voting process".

It is unclear, however, whether the change will come into effect in time for the next Oscars ceremony in February. None of the Best Picture winners over the last five years broke $100 million in the box office, according to Box Office Mojo.

And the inclusion of what amounts to a "most popular" category is also likely to be a source of friction for both film connoisseurs and some sections of the film industry who are not represented at the Oscars.

Another change includes the addition of Outstanding Achievement in Popular Film. Not only is "Black Panther" worthy of a best-picture nomination, Rich said, but the academy has made a concerted effort to up its diversity in recent years.

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It'll be introduced as part of a shorter telecast (three hours or less, it seems), while future shows will be brought forward to early February. "In creating this award, the Board of Governors supports broad-based consideration of excellence in all films".

To accommodate a three-hour ceremony, the Academy will present select categories live in the Dolby Theatre and during commercial breaks.

Other cinephiles were turned off by the idea of a "popular film" category, worrying it could turn the Oscars into a ceremony that panders to popular public opinion, much like the MTV Movie Awards or the People's Choice Awards.

Many social media users and film critics criticised the change, calling it "pandering" and a "desperate" move that will seek to honour popularity over quality, or act as a token gesture to films that would otherwise have been nominated in the Best Picture category. Those categories haven't been determined, but there has been push-back in the past in awards-season shows (not just the Oscars) from below-the-line crafts wary of having their categories nudged off the main broadcast.

"Here's the ten highest-grossing films, when accounting for inflation aka America's most "popular" films," Palotta wrote. So, while they're being straight up about "this is the movie that y'all voted for the most with your dollar this year", the Academy's also telling you that whatever movie you liked best probably wasn't going to win without them being "generous" enough to invent a new slot.