Netflix can chill: Streaming movies will still be eligible for Oscar nominations.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Board of Governors announced Tuesday it “voted to maintain Rule Two, Eligibility for the 92nd Oscars,” when it approved the slate of rules for its next season.
“The rule states that to be eligible for awards consideration, a film must have a minimum seven-day theatrical run in a Los Angeles County commercial theater, with at least three screenings per day for paid admission,” a news release stated. “Motion pictures released in nontheatrical media on or after the first day of their Los Angeles County theatrical qualifying run remain eligible.”
That was important, given that Steven Spielberg, who represents the directors branch as an academy governor, reportedly was pushing for a rule change to make content from streaming services like Netflix ineligible.
The Netflix film, “Roma,” won three Oscars in February at the Academy Awards ceremony: best director, Alfonso Cuarón; best foreign language film; and best cinematography.
“We support the theatrical experience as integral to the art of motion pictures, and this weighed heavily in our discussions,” Academy President John Bailey said in a statement. “Our rules currently require theatrical exhibition, and also allow for a broad selection of films to be submitted for Oscars consideration. We plan to further study the profound changes occurring in our industry and continue discussions with our members about these issues.”
The board did vote to make some changes in other areas.
Those include changing the Foreign Language Film category’s name to International Feature Film; increasing to five from three the number of nominated films in the Makeup and Hairstyling category; and no longer requiring the theatrical release of eight eligible animated features in the calendar year for the Animated Feature category to be activated.
Animated and live action short films now also can qualify theatrically in New York City or Los Angeles County to be eligible for submission.