Sunday, May 5, 2013

Academy Opens Up All 24 Categories to Full Membership

Howard Koch, who has already made a splash by rehiring the pair who produced last year's show to come back due to ratings (the ratings were up because guys my age wanted to see Seth MacFarlane, and the movies were both good and popular that were nominated, not because of their 30 minute tribute to themselves). Has now announced that the Academy leadership has opened up all of the categories to the full membership. For those categories previously restricted, there will still be screenings, but screeners will also be mailed. I am of two minds on this. One, for some categories like Foreign Language, I think this could be better because sometimes the small group that actually votes on this make interesting choices that really do not reflect the Academy's view. I also think that for the short categories, this may open up exposure, which is great. But I know for a fact that even with the big movies in the big categories, not all voters take the time to watch each film. Sometimes it's because they are busy, other times it's because they simply don't want to. In 2005, films like Brokeback Mountain and Transamerica were avoided by more conservative voters, and last year, countless anonymous members said they refused to sit through the hard-to-watch Amour. What makes Koch and other Academy leaders think that they will take the time to actually watch the screeners for all of these short films, and foreign films as well? Either way, until March of next year, we will not know how this really plays out. Until then, the old addage remains: We'll have to wait and see...

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