Home Movie Articles Oscars 2021: Streaming Movies Now Eligible For This Year’s Awards
Oscars 2021: Streaming Movies Now Eligible For This Year’s Awards

Oscars 2021: Streaming Movies Now Eligible For This Year’s Awards

4
0

In keeping with the world’s adaptation to life under quarantine, The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences has voted to allow movies that forgo a theatrical run to be eligible for the Oscars until further notice. With movie theaters around the world shutting down to prevent the spread of coronavirus, many films have seen their release dates pushed out of 2020 entirely. Because of this, many have wondered what an Oscars ceremony that was limited to only a handful of qualifying films would look like given the Academy’s established rules about qualification.

In years previous, movies that were produced by streaming companies like Netflix or Amazon had to make sure their more awards inclined films screened in theaters before they made their way online. That’s why some fans were able to catch movies like The Irishman or Manchester by the Sea in limited theatrical runs. Those rules have fueled many debates about the Academy’s gatekeeping and refusal to evolve with the times, which is only one of many controversies the Oscars have suffered over the years.

But now it seems that the Academy has no other choice but to evolve. In a statement posted on the official Oscars website, the Academy revealed that for this year only, movies that debut on streaming services or were VOD releases will be considered alongside their theatrical brethren. Check out the statement below:

Until further notice, and for the 93rd Awards year only, films that had a previously planned theatrical release but are initially made available on a commercial streaming or VOD service may qualify in the Best Picture, general entry and specialty categories for the 93rd Academy Awards under these provisions:

The film must be made available on the secure Academy Screening Room member-only streaming site within 60 days of the film’s streaming or VOD release;

The film must meet all other eligibility requirements.

Oscars Best Picture Race
The Academy went on to say that the rule will cease to apply when movie theaters reopen at a time when it’s safe for them to do so. Movies released after theaters reopen will need to comply with the original rule – wherein films need to have an exclusive theatrical screening run for at least seven days – will apply once again.

This is uncharted territory for the Oscars and although this is a major step towards normalizing this year’s ceremony, the extent of the virus’s impact remains unclear. Many movies have already opted to delay rather than move straight to streaming but most of those have been blockbusters that never would have been considered for major awards anyway. If the quarantine drags on into the fall, or even into the summer, it will be interesting to see how this news impacts decisions to stream or delay for movies like The Green Knight, tentatively scheduled to hit theaters on May 29th. It seems inevitable that the Oscars are in for a strange ceremony this year but this exception will at least give it some semblance of normalcy and might even give streaming movies that would have ordinarily been overlooked a chance to gain a much deserved nomination.

But now it seems that the Academy has no other choice but to evolve. In a statement posted on the official Oscars website, the Academy revealed that for this year only, movies that debut on streaming services or were VOD releases will be considered alongside their theatrical brethren. Check out the statement below:

Until further notice, and for the 93rd Awards year only, films that had a previously planned theatrical release but are initially made available on a commercial streaming or VOD service may qualify in the Best Picture, general entry and specialty categories for the 93rd Academy Awards under these provisions:

The film must be made available on the secure Academy Screening Room member-only streaming site within 60 days of the film’s streaming or VOD release;

The film must meet all other eligibility requirements.

The Academy went on to say that the rule will cease to apply when movie theaters reopen at a time when it’s safe for them to do so. Movies released after theaters reopen will need to comply with the original rule – wherein films need to have an exclusive theatrical screening run for at least seven days – will apply once again.

This is uncharted territory for the Oscars and although this is a major step towards normalizing this year’s ceremony, the extent of the virus’s impact remains unclear. Many movies have already opted to delay rather than move straight to streaming but most of those have been blockbusters that never would have been considered for major awards anyway. If the quarantine drags on into the fall, or even into the summer, it will be interesting to see how this news impacts decisions to stream or delay for movies like The Green Knight, tentatively scheduled to hit theaters on May 29th. It seems inevitable that the Oscars are in for a strange ceremony this year but this exception will at least give it some semblance of normalcy and might even give streaming movies that would have ordinarily been overlooked a chance to gain a much deserved nomination.

(4)