In a first-ever move, the Academy has announced that it would consider movies released straight to stream for eligibility.
The Academy announced on Tuesday that the temporal eligibility rule was inevitable in the wake of the global effect of the coronavirus pandemic on the film industry. Since the global outbreak, film theatres and film festivals organizers have been forced to shut their doors.
However, the new Oscar eligibility rule stipulates that only movies originally billed for theatrical release but forced to be made available on commercial platforms will be considered.
Academy President David Rubin and CEO Dawn Hudson shared: “The Academy firmly believes there is no greater way to experience the magic of movies than to see them in a theater. 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 recognize the importance of their work being seen and also celebrated, especially now, when audiences appreciate movies more than ever”.
The International Feature Film category will also undergo some procedural changes as Academy members will now allowed to participate in preliminary voting.