Oscars to present some awards prior to telecast
In an effort to improve the pace and sustain viewer interest in the three-hour Oscar telecast, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will present eight awards prior to the televised show, it was reported Tuesday.
In a letter sent to Academy members and obtained initially by The Hollywood Reporter, Academy President David Rubin said the Oscars for documentary short subject, film editing, makeup/hairstyling, original score, production design, animated short film, live action short film and sound will be handed out inside the Dolby Theatre before the telecast begins.
The presentations and subsequent acceptance speeches will be edited and shown during the telecast, ensuring that all winners will have their “Oscar moment” on stage and be recognized as part of the on-air show.
“For the audience at home, the show’s flow does not change, though it will become tighter and more electric with this new cadence, and the live broadcast should end — yes, with the best picture category — at the three-hour mark,” Rubin wrote.
He noted in the letter that the ceremony is “a live event television show and we must prioritize the television audience to increase viewer engagement and keep the show vital, kinetic and relevant.”
The Academy has tried to implement a similar strategy before, but backlash from impacted sectors of the movie industry thwarted the plans. In 2018, the Academy announced that some awards would be presented during commercial breaks of the telecast, with highlights of the acceptance speeches then shown during the telecast. But objections from various industry guilds prompted the Academy to scrap the plan.
The 94th Oscar ceremony will be held March 27.