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Changes Coming for the Academy Awards

152 posts in this topic

12 hours ago, drednm said:

I sorta doubt this new proposed "award" has that much to do with TV ratings. I think it has more to do with box office for an Oscar "winner" and all the related salabilities (blu-ray, dvd, streaming, television showings, etc) as well as theatrical re-releases and franchising endless sequels.

Oh, it's about ratings too. The ratings for the show have been in the toilet...........didnt you read the article?

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9 hours ago, ChristineHoard said:

Just about the lamest idea ever.  With the expansion of Best Film nominations to 10, there already is inclusion for popular popcorn movies that are halfway decent.

 

3 minutes ago, Hibi said:

Well, follow the money is not what the awards are supposed to be awarded for, but sadly that's the reasoning now. Ratings and money. If voters, thought these films were good, they would make the cut as nominees.

 

Will they allow TEN nominations for popular films too??? That means MORE film clip presentations (by a star presenter) And they want to keep the show to 3 HOURS???? LMREO!!!!

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20 hours ago, Hibi said:

 

LOL! And it'll be made of cheap plastic...........

It won't be cheap if the plastic model is imported from China. 

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13 hours ago, ChristineHoard said:

Just about the lamest idea ever.  With the expansion of Best Film nominations to 10, there already is inclusion for popular popcorn movies that are halfway decent.

Expansion of the Best Film nominations to 10 was their attempt related to inclusion and diversity.   But they are still getting a lot of pressure from the local media here is La La Land to increase inclusion and diversity.   

E.g. USC has recently released a few studies and one even on lack of diversity of movie critics:

"Films like Crazy Rich Asians, The Spy Who Dumped Me, BlacKkKlansman and The Happytime Murdersare poised to provide a much-needed dose of diversity to theaters this summer. But as audiences look to critical reviews to determine if these movies are worth the ticket price, what perspectives are available? A new study from the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism reveals that the film reviewers are unlikely to be as diverse as the casts they are critiquing.".

This is why I said one should be happy they didn't create new 'diversity' categories.   E.g related to the Scarlett Johansson controversy;  a best transgender actor in a non-transgender role!     

 

 

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Btw, you all might be interested in a chart I built yesterday - box office vs. best picture. Since 2003-2004 (date change) the BP winner was not at 1 or close to top ten (which it was for every decade prior. Lots of things have changed but...fyi,

DkQBjycVAAA6MHV.jpg

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There are many reasons for the decline in box-office take among Best Picture nominees and winners. Many seem to imply that it's a sign that the Academy has lost touch with the public. That may be partially true, but I wouldn't point the finger at the Academy in that scenario. One has only to look at what the top box-office hits are each year to see what I mean. The general movie-going public* likes junk-food movies. 

Part of this I blame on targeted distribution models. Studios use data analysis to determine which movies will do well in which markets, and then distribute accordingly. That leaves no room for "sleeper" hits to emerge, as people are not given access to movies off the beaten path. Large cities have multiple theater options, but most medium and small towns have only one or two theaters to choose from, and those are multiplexes that show the blockbusters tailored to those demographics. Very few Best Picture nominees ever play in my local theater before the nominations are announced. That wasn't always the case, but became the norm in the last 20 years or so. 

It's much like the common complaint that Hollywood is in a rut, only producing sequels and remakes. That's true, but that's because most big-budget original films flop at the box office, while small budget films are not distributed widely enough to generate any significant financial notice (and of course mid-budget films have disappeared).

*I wouldn't consider most of the users around here to be among this group, as we tend to take our movies a little more seriously.

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The viewing public has also changed. I think it largely dates back to the creation of the summer blockbuster. If you go back at look at Variety charts from the '60s and '70s, moviegoers used to go to more sophisticated films routinely. Network and Rocky could both be big moneymakers (and both get Best Picture nominations!). Or One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest and Jaws. But starting around the turn of the decade into the 80s, people stopped going to see more sophisticated fare in such large numbers (in general - there are some exceptions). 

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1 hour ago, sewhite2000 said:

The viewing public has also changed. I think it largely dates back to the creation of the summer blockbuster. If you go back at look at Variety charts from the '60s and '70s, moviegoers used to go to more sophisticated films routinely. Network and Rocky could both be big moneymakers (and both get Best Picture nominations!). Or One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest and Jaws. But starting around the turn of the decade into the 80s, people stopped going to see more sophisticated fare in such large numbers (in general - there are some exceptions). 

I speak for myself, but I think it may speak for many others, too.  If I wanted to see, hear, digest & interpret a movie more character-driven with more depth, dIalog and nuance,  my chances of enjoying it to its fullest uninterrupted and audibly clear in a crowded theater was at best 'iffy'. Since the popularity of renting movies at home was becoming more prevalent around that time, I opted to appreciate them at home.

However, as far as big blockbusters, it seemed somehow better seeing & hearing it on the big screen and sharing a crowded theater audience's reactions. Although I could've done without the crying babies & screaming kids during Robert Shaw's absolutely wonderful (I saw it later on tape to really appreciate it) shark soliloquy in "JAWS".

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6 hours ago, sewhite2000 said:

The viewing public has also changed. I think it largely dates back to the creation of the summer blockbuster. If you go back at look at Variety charts from the '60s and '70s, moviegoers used to go to more sophisticated films routinely. Network and Rocky could both be big moneymakers (and both get Best Picture nominations!). Or One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest and Jaws. But starting around the turn of the decade into the 80s, people stopped going to see more sophisticated fare in such large numbers (in general - there are some exceptions). 

A big problem is that theaters have changed:  Say "Movie theater" to anyone literally under the age of thirty, and you'll hear complaints about cellphones, cineplexes, and commercialism thrown at them in the lobby and theater ads.  You can not explain to them what was the appeal of going to a local theater on Friday night in 1976 or 1984...Go ahead, try it yourself.

One of the things that made "80's Movies" so nostalgic in the minds of survivors--every movie was "bigger" then, in the theaters--was that the majority of theaters in the 70's were one-screen and most in the 80's were still small local 3-5 places, either downtown or close by.  Seeing a movie was more of a local night out, whereas today, it's another trip to the Big Box Mall, and if it's not in the same mall as the Big Box Wal-Mart, it's probably just across the highway.  In the old days, theaters with only 3-5 screens had to keep their movies rotated often to keep the folks in town or nearby towns interested, and there was something to see almost every week; today, 15-screen cineplexes offer your One-Stop Shopping Location, we stop in to "pick up" this weekend's big opening, and go home.  That not only hurts our moviegoing and our perception of being in an audience, it hurts the movies--We used to root for a movie being "worthy" to be remembered as best of the year, now we typecast it as relegated to "those" movies over in the college-town arthouses.  Most of whose theaters DO have 3-5 screens and more relaxed lobbies.

8 hours ago, jamesjazzguitar said:

E.g. USC has recently released a few studies and one even on lack of diversity of movie critics:

"Films like Crazy Rich Asians, The Spy Who Dumped Me, BlacKkKlansman and The Happytime Murdersare poised to provide a much-needed dose of diversity to theaters this summer.

(Okay, I must ask:  How the flippin' heck is Happytime Murders "diverse", unless we're still in automatic Ghostbusters-avenging mode of considering anything Melissa McCarthy still stars in as an "achievement for women in film"?  Unless maybe they meant puppet diversity, a woefully under-represented demographic?)

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But as audiences look to critical reviews to determine if these movies are worth the ticket price, what perspectives are available?

They're literally complaining that "If we had more female movie critics, THEY'D have liked Oceans' 8 and Spy Who Dumped Me!"  Which is so close to the disgruntled "RottenTomatoes critics are old guys who hated Batman!" DC comic-book fanboys, you don't know whether to laugh or cry.  Me, I'll laugh.

It's true we don't have many female movie critics--there was Pauline Kael, but she's dead--just as we have only a small affirmative-action minority of female TV football commentators and car-repair technicians.  But every time someone asks WHY there can't be "more female movie critics", I tell them old war-stories about that terrible '99-'00 year when Roger Ebert was trying to audition a new replacement for Gene Siskel on his TV show...And was convinced that a "He said, She said" male-female critic duo would be the one thing that would pack in new movie-fan viewers.  No, it wasn't the producers who thought that, HE thought that, although he probably had a major co-producing role at the time.

Mostly, he tried to groom the role for one of his best offscreen press-junket acquaintances, Boston "entertainment reporter" Joyce Kulhawik, who--how shall I put this?--the "Spunky female TV news reporter" from an 80's TV series made a more convincing movie critic than Kulhawik did.  You will find more female "Entertainment reporters" on local TV stations than critics, watch Joyce and Roger on screen and you will know which is which and why.  

The S&E "Auditions" were starting to get a loyal American Idol-like fan-following of rooters and pool-bets--the lead favorite was Harry Knowles from AintItCool.com, until Joel Siegel did a great turn on his own--but once it became clear that the race was fixed and Joyce was Roger's Little Darling for the role, fans exploded.  Ebert was besieged with "What the (bleep) were you thinking??" outrages from fans--Even I, who'd exchanged one or two messages before, wrote in to say, "Look, we didn't even like her in BOSTON!!", and Ebert was nice enough to write back and say, "Well, what did you think of Lisa Schwarzbaum from Ent. Weekly, how well did she do on the show?"  There was NO CONVINCING HIM back to sanity.  

I know it's one of the most sexist cliche's in the world to say "If females want to be movie experts, ask them whether they preferred Curly's Stooges shorts to the Shemp ones" ;) , but to be a critic, you have to love taking things apart just to put them back together again...Not because the movie characters "spoke to you as a person".  There's only a certain group of people whose brains are wired to do that, some for the last 10,000 years, and don't look at us, we didn't do it!

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the Academy is doing its best to keep the Oscars broadcast to a 3-hour minimum (This year’s broadcast was some 4 hours long)

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11 hours ago, Hibi said:

Oh, it's about ratings too. The ratings for the show have been in the toilet...........didnt you read the article?

The ratings don't put money directly into the studio coffers.

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What piece of schlock took in the most money from the masses in 2018 ?  Now which presenter will have the courage to say it.😁

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You want to boost ratings? Insist that every nominee stand for the National Anthem ... even the foreigners. If a nominee does not stand, his/her nomination is dropped. People will tune in just to see what happens. And isn't it high time that Tor Johnson is honored posthumously? Also, some gratuitous nudity would be a welcome improvement (but not from Tor).

 

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30 minutes ago, cody1949 said:

What piece of schlock took in the most money from the masses in 2018 ?  Now which presenter will have the courage to say it.😁

https://www.boxofficemojo.com/yearly/chart/?yr=2018

They won't have to say it, THAT'S the movie they're trying to push for the Oscar the whole evening.  And don't think they won't try to get the second one, too, and get the third out of its own category lock.

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33 minutes ago, cody1949 said:

What piece of schlock took in the most money from the masses in 2018 ?  Now which presenter will have the courage to say it.😁

Could you clarify what you're trying to imply by this question? The biggest grossing movie of the year is going to be Black Panther, which I didn't swoon over as much as a lot of critics but still thought was pretty entertaining. I wouldn't describe it as schlock. In fact, prior to this announcement of a new Best Popular Film category, there was definitely a movement pushing for it to get a Best Picture nomination.

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18 hours ago, sewhite2000 said:

Could you clarify what you're trying to imply by this question? The biggest grossing movie of the year is going to be Black Panther, which I didn't swoon over as much as a lot of critics but still thought was pretty entertaining. I wouldn't describe it as schlock. In fact, prior to this announcement of a new Best Popular Film category, there was definitely a movement pushing for it to get a Best Picture nomination.

The issue is, why NOT Black Panther for Best Picture?  What's the embarrassing stigma that requires "apologizing" for it as a mass-market commercial movie? (Aside from it being overpraised and not really the best Marvel, but then "Up" was never exactly the best Pixar movie either.)

Whether it was ABC's cheap Disney plug or not, has the Academy, complaining that they've "typecast" themselves into dreary Sundance indies and wanting to get out of it, feel that it's too "embarrassing" to go back and put a Marvel movie in as one of the year's "best" commercial films?  (I put "best" in quotations, for obvious reasons.)

I remember the Oscar betting pools in '04:  Oh, you just TRY and tell someone back then that "LOTR: Return of the King" was the far-and-away front runner for Picture...And watch everyone turn into snooty backhanded-cynical Oscar pundits saying "Oh, the Academy hates fantasy films!  It's too commercial for the mature voters, and it'll be seen as too escapist!...It only got nominated for its half-billion box office!  They've given the award to Clint Eastwood too many times, and Sean Penn is Oscar gold, your smart money is on Mystic River!"  Oh, did I wait dearly for that Tuesday morning, and all the rich payback I knew even from the start I was going to reap.  Never was it more truly earned.  😈

Was Return of the King the best movie of '03?--YMMV.  Was it the best of the original Peter Jackson LOTR films?--I wouldn't put it first, since that would still be Fellowship, but then, the other half of the pundits were saying "Yes, even if the Academy does regret giving '02's award to 'A Beautiful Mind' instead of 'Fellowship of the Ring', they're probably going to make a symbolic gesture of giving an award to all three..."  (Which is why nobody minded when Chicago beat Two Towers...Well, almost nobody.)  Do I, however, object to the idea that a big-budget fantasy film was ushered into the Best Picture pantheon?--Not.  A.  Bit.  I've always seen BP as some cross-section representation of every great movie Hollywood can make, from musicals like Sound of Music, to war pictures like Platoon, to comedies like Annie Hall, to even horror movies like Sixth Sense making the nomination cut.  (Few others truly deserved to.)

If superhero movies, especially Marvel ones, have now been a part of American movie culture for ten years, why wouldn't the best one show up for a nomination at least once?  I've often thought that if Toy Story 3 had just broken out and given Pixar a notch in film history with the Oscar in '10 like its supporters wanted it to--before "The King's Speech" made its usual last-minute Miramax grab--history might be very different today.

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2 hours ago, EricJ said:

I remember the Oscar betting pools in '05:  Oh, you just TRY and tell someone back then that "LOTR: Return of the King" was the far-and-away front runner for Picture...And watch everyone turn into snooty backhanded-cynical Oscar pundits saying "Oh, the Academy hates fantasy films!  It's too commercial for the mature voters, and it'll be seen as too escapist!...It only got nominated for its half-billion box office!  They've given the award to Clint Eastwood too many times, and Sean Penn is Oscar gold, your smart money is on Mystic River!"  Oh, did I wait dearly for that Tuesday morning, and all the rich payback I knew even from the start I was going to reap.  Never was it more truly earned.  😈

Was Return of the King the best movie of '04?--YMMV.  Was it the best of the original Peter Jackson LOTR films?--I wouldn't put it first, since that would still be Fellowship, but then, the other half of the pundits were saying "Yes, even if the Academy does regret giving '02's award to 'A Beautiful Mind' instead of 'Fellowship of the Ring', they're probably going to make a symbolic gesture of giving an award to all three..."  (Which is why nobody minded when Chicago beat Two Towers...Well, almost nobody.)  Do I, however, object to the idea that a big-budget fantasy film was ushered into the Best Picture pantheon?--Not.  A.  Bit.  I've always seen BP as some cross-section representation of every great movie Hollywood can make, from musicals like Sound of Music, to war pictures like Platoon, to comedies like Annie Hall, to even horror movies like Sixth Sense making the nomination cut.  (Few others truly deserved to.)

Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King was in 2003, and it won the Oscar in 2004.

In 2005, Clint Eastwood actually did win the Oscar for Million Dollar Baby (2004).

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8 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King was in 2003, and it won the Oscar in 2004.

In 2005, Clint Eastwood actually did win the Oscar for Million Dollar Baby (2004).

Does that mean "A Beautiful Mind" was the Best Picture of 2001?

Image result for a beautiful mind gif

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1 hour ago, jakeem said:

Does that mean "A Beautiful Mind" was the Best Picture of 2001?

Yeah, it was the Best Picture Oscar winner for 2001(the year the movie was released), and it won in 2002 (the year the ceremony took place).

I don't see your point as it relates to my comment on Eric's post, though, as whether one considers the release year or the ceremony year, no one was taking bets on Lord of the Rings winning anything in 2005.

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I think I started a thread about this very topic or at least introduced the idea to another thread. This is a point of consternation for me. For almost all of Oscar history, a film was considered to have won an Oscar for the year it was released, not for the year of the ceremony. If you look at those lavish Robert Osborne coffee table books, they read something like this:

1944 Oscars
(Ceremony held March 13, 1945)

Best Picture: Going My Way

Etc. I'm making up the date. The point is, in Mr. Osborne's mind, Going My Way was the Best Picture of 1944.

However, in the Internet Age, if you do a Google search of if you look at the Academy's own Website, Going My Way is considered the Best Picture of 1945. I don't really know why this shift happened, but it did, and it has met with approval by the Academy itself, who want the focus to be on the year of the ceremony, not the year the films were actually released. In my mind, this leads to a lot of unnecessary confusion.

I expressed my passionate unhappiness about this turn of events on that previous thread and was met by a deluge of ho-hum responses or confusion about what I was even talking about, so I learned this is not a big deal to most other people!

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10 minutes ago, sewhite2000 said:

I expressed my passionate unhappiness about this turn of events on that previous thread and was met by a deluge of ho-hum responses or confusion about what I was even talking about, so I learned this is not a big deal to most other people!

I agree with you, in that I always consider the movie in terms of the year it was released. So All About Eve is the Best Picture of 1950, An American in Paris is the Best Picture of 1951, etc.

The only time this gets confused is when the movie that won was not released in the same year as most or all of the other nominees. For example, Casablanca won the Oscar for movies from 1943, but it was released in 1942. Crash was released in 2004, but won the Oscar for films from 2005. The Hurt Locker was released in 2008, but won the Oscar for movies from 2009. It all comes back to the eligibility requirements for consideration.

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Yes, as the Academy reinvents itself and its ceremony, it seems like this is a rule invented for some long-ago forgotten reason that's probably no longer relevant and should probably be done away with so that this never happens again. A film has to play in Los Angeles before the end of a calendar year to be eligible for Oscar nominations for that year. Casablanca played in New York in December of 1942 but not in LA until January of 1943. So, it had to wait an entire year to be considered for Oscar eligibility. It's probably testament to how great that film is that it had to sit around for a whole year, and nothing else came out in that time to supplant it in the Academy's mind. I'm thinking Crash and Hurt Locker were probably both films that had their origins in the film festival circuit and had gradually widening releases and just didn't play in LA before New Year's Eve in the official years of their release. I think it's time to eliminate this weird rule insisting the film play in this one city to be eligible.

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Somebody wanted to know what I consider "schlock".  "Schlock" is a movie that depends on visual graphics rather than an interesting story with intelligent dialogue. The big box office winners usually depend on the former. Youth makes up the majority of today's audiences and they have little interest in sitting through intelligent dialogue. They want action and if it can come with violence and graphic bloodletting all the better. This unfortunately is big box office today. That is why I am a fan of TCM and have been for years.

 

 

 

 

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3 hours ago, sewhite2000 said:

I think I started a thread about this very topic or at least introduced the idea to another thread. This is a point of consternation for me. For almost all of Oscar history, a film was considered to have won an Oscar for the year it was released, not for the year of the ceremony. If you look at those lavish Robert Osborne coffee table books, they read something like this:

1944 Oscars
(Ceremony held March 13, 1945)

Best Picture: Going My Way

Etc. I'm making up the date. The point is, in Mr. Osborne's mind, Going My Way was the Best Picture of 1944.

However, in the Internet Age, if you do a Google search of if you look at the Academy's own Website, Going My Way is considered the Best Picture of 1945. I don't really know why this shift happened, but it did, and it has met with approval by the Academy itself, who want the focus to be on the year of the ceremony, not the year the films were actually released. In my mind, this leads to a lot of unnecessary confusion.

I expressed my passionate unhappiness about this turn of events on that previous thread and was met by a deluge of ho-hum responses or confusion about what I was even talking about, so I learned this is not a big deal to most other people!

What we are experiencing is just how the Google search engine was set-up.   The Academy didn't change anything related to the year associated with the 'release year' of films.   Instead, as you discovered, the search engine is designed based on the year of the award show.    I guess the desingers assume the year of the award show is how most people would wish to search.    I feel the set-up of the search engine is lame and 'year' should of been defined as the release-date-year.     

Anyhow, when one gets to the site it is clear what each 'year' represents,  except the first year listed.  Below is from the site for 1943\1944.     (I believe the "| 1944",  should be removed since it isn't in any context like the other two years listed).

THE 16TH ACADEMY AWARDS | 1944
Grauman's Chinese Theatre
Thursday, March 2, 1944
Honoring movies released in 1943

 

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