Oscars introduce new award for outstanding popular film

Lewis Collier
August 9, 2018

The last time a new category was added to the awards was in 2001, for Best Animated Film.

The lack of nominations for blockbusters led to a change previously as well. When The Academy Awards began, they were held in May. The following year, the category was widened from five nominees to ten. On the one hand, it will give the Oscars a chance to honor movies such as Black Panther, Avengers: Infinity War or Mission: Impossible - Fallout that would assuredly have a much more hard, if not impossible time being nominated for Best Picture.

The Academy could have waited to see the impact on the best picture race from its push to diversify its membership, Willmore said.

It's unclear what exactly spurred this decision to consider a category for "popular film" and what exactly that would entail (likely big box-office movies that aren't necessarily considered Oscar-worthy). This will allow audiences to actually, you know, give a damn about the ceremony since they will have seen the movies in question.

As a outcome, the United Kingdom equivalent - the BAFTA Film Awards - are likely to take place earlier in the year from 2020.

The sweeping changes also include handing out some of the 24 Academy Awards during commercial breaks in the February 24 broadcast on Walt Disney Co.'s ABC network. At this time, the specific categories haven't been determined. The ceremony will also be shortened in length and will take place on an earlier date, effective in 2020.

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There are some big changes in store at the Oscars.

"The board of governors took this charge seriously", the board of governors at the Academy of Motion Pictures said in a letter to members, which was made available to media.

The Academy which runs the Oscars ceremony has added a new category to honour popular films and has promised a brisk three-hour ceremony and a much earlier air date in 2020.

Edited excerpts of those presentations will then be shown during the broadcast.

Oscar or Logie? The world's most prestigious film award is creating a category for most popular film. Eligibility requirements for the popular film category will be forthcoming. They argue the change "will not affect awards eligibility dates or the voting process". Next year's Oscars, however, will still air on Sunday, February 24.

Last year, "Wonder Woman's" complete shutout aroused an uproar from many who consider the first female-headlined superhero film award-worthy, and as Woerner pointed out, Christopher Nolan's "The Dark Knight" was nominated for eight Academy Awards, but not best picture.

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