Variety

Oscars 2021 delayed by two months in light of Covid-19

Hemani Sheth Mumbai | Updated on June 16, 2020 Published on June 16, 2020

An Oscar statue   -  Reuters

The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences has decided to postpone the 93rd Oscars by two months due to the impact of the global Covid-19 pandemic.

The 93rd Oscars earlier slated for February 28, 2021, will now be held on April 25, 2021, the Academy announced in a press release.

“For over a century, movies have played an important role in comforting, inspiring, and entertaining us during the darkest of times,” Academy president David Rubin and Academy CEO Dawn Hudson said in an official statement. “They certainly have this year. Our hope, in extending the eligibility period and our Awards date, is to provide the flexibility filmmakers need to finish and release their films without being penalized for something beyond anyone’s control.”

Reports regarding the delay in Oscars had surfaced in mid-may. The Variety last month had reported that the AMPAS was considering to postpone the event owing to the risk of the pandemic and the disruption caused in the film industry because of the current situation.

The decision was made in a virtual Zoom meeting with the institution’s 54-member board of governors including Steven Spielberg, Laura Dern and Whoopi Goldberg. The dealy was in light of the threat of a potential resurgence of Covid-19 in the fall as predicted by experts and winters posing a greater risk of infection at such a large-scale public event in February, Los Angeles Times reported.

With the event pushed back, the Academy has also increased the time span of a movie release to qualify. The films released January 1, 2020, and February 28, 2021, will be eligible.

The Academy had also recently altered its rules for eligibility to adapt to the changing film industry environment. The Oscars will now consider films that have premiered digital, skipping theatrical releases, Variety had reported.

It is also creating a task force to “develop and implement new representation and inclusion standards for Oscars eligibility by July 31st, 2020.”

The Academy has also delayed the opening of its Academy Museum of Motion Pictures from December 14, 2020, to April 30, 2021.

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Published on June 16, 2020
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