Oscars 2021 could be postponed as Academy ‘consider alternative formats’

The reports follow The Academy's changes to eligibility rules, which were made to accommodate premieres cancelled by coronavirus

Who votes for the Oscars, Getty

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is reportedly considering delaying the 93rd Oscars ceremony, due to take place early next year, in light of the coronavirus pandemic.

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According to Variety, who spoke to “sources familiar with the matter”, the February telecast is “likely” to be postponed.

However, one source reportedly said that the Academy has not yet discussed or formally proposed details, including potential new dates, while another said that ABC, the US network broadcasting the event, has not changed the 28th February airdate.

Last month, the Academy changed eligibility rules to account for COVID-19’s impact on the cinema industry, allowing films not shown in theatres to be nominated. However, to be considered, a streamed film must have already had a planned theatrical release and be made available to the Academy Screening Room site within 60 days of its streaming release.

The latest James Bond film No Time to Die was postponed due to coronavirus
The latest James Bond film No Time to Die was postponed due to coronavirus

Films were previously required to run for at least seven days in a commercial theatre in Los Angeles County to be considered for an Oscar.

At the time, Academy president David Rubin told Variety that it was too early to know whether the 2021 Oscars would be affected by coronavirus.

“It’s impossible to know what the landscape will be,” he said. “We know we want to celebrate film but we do not know exactly what form it will take.”

A large number of feature film releases have been delayed, such as Daniel Craig’s final bond outing No Time to Die and A Quiet Place II, while some films have debuted digitally only, such as Emma and The Invisible Man.

The 93rd Academy Awards are currently due to take place at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood on 28 February.

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RadioTimes.com reached out to the Academy for a comment.