Earlier in the summer, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced a few changes to their Oscar broadcast. Most of the details were pretty nebulous, but the one that got most critics and fans in a tizzy was that the Academy was going to introduce a new category. The category, Best Popular Film, was meant to spotlight movies that didn’t qualify for the Oscars but still made Hollywood executives massive boatloads of money. I actually was pretty fine with this inclusion, seeing as it would allow for more movies to be honored, but I was in the minority. With that in mind, the Academy announced today that they would not present the award at this year’s Oscars.
The Academy admitted that trying to introduce a new category nine months into the calendar year was unfair to all of the other movies that came out before the award was announced. Besides, trying to create an entirely new award without any concrete qualifications for movies was pretty inconvenient to say the least. The Academy CEO, Dawn Hudson, responded to criticism to the award by saying:
“There has been a wide range of reactions to the introduction of a new award, and we recognize the need for further discussion with our members. We have made changes to the Oscars over the years—including this year—and we will continue to evolve while also respecting the incredible legacy of the last 90 years.”
The Oscars are still going to have a shortened run time this year, lasting only three hours instead of the eternity of years prior. Six to eight awards will be given during commercial breaks with footage of the winners being edited together later in the broadcast. Which awards exactly are going to be cut from the broadcast has yet to be determined, but the Academy did confirm that the cut awards will be “rotated each year.”
The 91st Oscars are scheduled to be held on Sunday, February 24th, 2019.