Academy Board of Governors Changes Rules for 92nd Oscars — Without Spielberg

IndieWire | 2/9/2020 | Staff
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No more Spielberg vs. Netflix headlines. The filmmaker and Academy governor skipped this year’s annual rules meeting on April 23. He may have recognized that the possible rule change requiring a longer exclusive run would not fly. He’s changed his tune, it seems.

As expected, the Academy’s Board of Governors voted to maintain the 2012 status quo for Rule Two, Eligibility for the 92nd Oscars. To be eligible for awards consideration, a film must have a minimum seven-day theatrical run in a Los Angeles County commercial theater, with at least three screenings per day for paid admission. Motion pictures released in nontheatrical media on or after the first day of their Los Angeles County theatrical qualifying run remain eligible.

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“We support the theatrical experience as integral to the art of motion pictures, and this weighed heavily in our discussions,” stated Academy President John Bailey. “Our rules currently require theatrical exhibition, and also allow for a broad selection of films to be submitted for Oscars consideration. We plan to further study the profound changes occurring in our industry and continue discussions with our members about these issues.”

One post-“Roma” rule change: the foreign-language category is now renamed the “International Feature Award.” Last year’s Oscar-winner Alfonso Cuarón memorably complained that when he watched Spanish-language movies in Mexico, they weren’t “foreign.” “We have noted that the reference to ‘Foreign’ is outdated within the global filmmaking community,” stated Larry Karaszewski and Diane Weyermann, co-chairs of the International Feature Film Committee. “We believe that International Feature Film better represents this category, and promotes a positive and inclusive view of filmmaking, and the art of film as a universal experience.”

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The category name change is not accompanied by any change in existing category rules, the submission process, or eligibility requirements. An international feature film is defined as...
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