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Oscars to present eight awards before the live telecast "to prioritize the television audience"

  • The Academy Awards is adapting the Tonys model of presenting some awards before the ceremony is broadcast on TV. Eight of the 23 categories will be pre-taped immediately before the March 27 telecast and shown edited during the live TV ceremony. According to The Hollywood Reporter's Scott Feinberg, "in a move that is already causing tension within the leadership of the Academy, but is likely to be well received by the general public, the presentations and acceptance of eight awards — documentary short, film editing, makeup/hairstyling, original score, production design, animated short, live action short and sound — will take place inside the Dolby Theatre an hour before the live telecast commences, will be recorded and will then be edited into the subsequent live broadcast, a variation of a controversial approach that the Academy first adopted and then abandoned in 2018." In a letter to the Academy members, Academy president David Rubin hinted at the years of declining viewership, saying it was "evident we needed to make some decisions about the broadcast that are in the best interest of the future of our show and our organization. When deciding how to produce the Oscars, we recognize it’s a live event television show and we must prioritize the television audience to increase viewer engagement and keep the show vital, kinetic, and relevant. This has been an important focus of discussion for quite some time. We do this while also remembering the importance of having our nominees relish a once-in-a-lifetime experience. In order to provide more time and opportunity for audience entertainment and engagement through comedy, musical numbers, film clip packages and movie tributes, a change in the show’s production will take place. This year’s show producers and Academy leadership with oversight of the Oscars have made the decision, with endorsement from the officers and the Awards Committee, that every awards category must be featured on the television broadcast, though eight awards will initially be presented in the Dolby Theatre in the hour before the live broadcast begins. They will not be presented in the pre-show nor on the red carpet, as some have speculated. Instead, the in-person ceremony at the Dolby Theatre will begin one hour earlier to present eight awards categories before the live telecast starts. Those presentations will then be edited by our creative and production teams and will be folded seamlessly into the live televised show." As Feinberg notes, the Academy announced in 2018 that four awards would be presented during commercial breaks. But following an uproar from the movie industry, the plan was scrapped.

    TOPICS: 94th Academy Awards, ABC, David Rubin, Award Shows, Film Academy