Oscars Creating 'Popular Film' Category In Academy Awards Reform

The Oscars are getting a shakeup in 2019, starting with a strict three-hour time limit and a new category to honor popular film.

The Atlantic's David Sims dubbed the new bracket "The Black Panther Memorial Award for Movie That We're Afraid Won't Get a Best Picture Nomination", while Vulture's Mark Harris deemed it a "special fake Oscar" for the first superhero film with a primarily black cast.

The Academy's board also voted to move the 2020 Oscars, the 92nd edition, from February 23 to February 9.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Academy's board of governors came together on Tuesday to figure out how they can add some pep to their golden-glazed step for a culture that changes rapidly by the hour. "Eligibility requirements and other key details will be forthcoming".

"We are committed to producing an entertaining show in three hours, delivering a more accessible Oscars for our viewers worldwide", the letter reads. Next year's 91st Awards will take place in its traditional late February slot, but in the following year, it will be held on Sunday, February 9.

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The airdate has been bumped up just for the 2020 telecast ― from February 23 to February 9 for 2020. "The winning moments will then be edited and aired later in the broadcast".

Again, it's important to note that we know very little right now about exactly how this category will work, who will be eligible (popular films can be low-budget indies that caught fire at the box office, too), and how the award will be framed in the overall telecast. The date change will not affect awards eligibility dates or the voting process.

Other cinephiles were turned off by the idea of a "popular film" category, worrying it could turn the Oscars into a ceremony that panders to popular public opinion, much like the MTV Movie Awards or the People's Choice Awards.

"We have heard from many of you about improvements needed to keep the Oscars and our Academy relevant in a changing world", Hudson and Bailey wrote. "Every single one was either nominated or won Best Picture with the exception of 'Snow White, ' which was given an honorary Oscar".

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