Prize winners, cameramen and other filmmakers express their displeasure.Shot from the film “Roma” nominated for an Oscar for best cinematography
On February 11, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced that four nominations will be announced during the commercial breaks of the television broadcast of the Oscar ceremony. Hollywood community and movie fans criticized the decision.
The management of the Academy decided not to show live the winners in four categories – “Best Cinematography”, “Best Editing”, “Best Short-Game” and “Best Make-Up and Hair Style”. However, the live broadcast of these moments will take place on the official website of Oscar.com, as well as on the social networks of the Academy. The clips will be cut a little and later shown during the broadcast.
In August 2018, the Academy approved a new method of presenting some awards in order to shorten the duration of the show. So they hope to increase the ratings. Academy President John Bailey said that the executive committees of the six branches of the Academy volunteered to offer their categories in accordance with the new system, and film academics chose four of them.
He did not explain on what basis these four categories were removed from the air. Surprisingly, Bailey himself previously led the management of the camera department of the film academy. His wife, Carol Littleton, represents the editors, and the first vice president of the Academy, Lois Burwell, is the makeup and stylists department.
John Bailey is himself a cinematographer! What a stupid decision.
— Bilge Ebiri (@BilgeEbiri) February 11, 2019
John Bailey – the operator himself! What a stupid decision
Twitter noted that the four selected categories did not feature Disney movies. The company owns ABC channel, which broadcasts the Oscar award ceremony.
By the way: How interesting that none of the categories consigned to commercial breaks happen to feature a nominee from Disney, the parent company of ABC.
— Mark Harris (@MarkHarrisNYC) February 11, 2019
The main ideologues of resistance were the Mexicans. The winner of last year’s Academy Award for Best Director Guillermo del Toro was one of the first to oppose the decision.
Reposting, revised: I would not presume to suggest what categories should occur during commercials on Oscars night, but, please: Cinematography & Editing are at the very heart of our craft. They are not inherited from a theatrical or literary tradition: they are cinema itself.
— Guillermo del Toro (@RealGDT) February 13, 2019
I clarify: I cannot decide which categories to cover with advertising pauses during the broadcast of the Oscars, but please note: camera work and editing are in the heart of our craft. They are not derived from theater or literature – this is cinema.
He was supported by Emmanuel Lyubecki, the winner of three Oscar awards for the best cinematographic work, which has already removed posts from his instagram : “Camera work and installation, perhaps the most basic parts, the basic details of the cinema. This is a bad decision. ”
Director Alfonso Cuarón, whose film “Roma” received ten Oscar nominations this year, including for best cinematography, also supported his outraged colleagues.
In the history of CINEMA, masterpieces have existed without sound, without color, without a story, without actors and without music. No one single film has ever existed without CINEMAtography and without editing.
— Alfonso Cuaron (@alfonsocuaron) February 12, 2019
In the history of cinema there are masterpieces without sound, without color, without plot, without actors and without music. But no film can exist without camera work and editing.
The director of Wonder Woman, Patti Jenkins, agreed with them.
I couldn’t agree more. If we are here to celebrate the craft and medium, its hard to imagine putting these categories down a tier from any others. https://t.co/poGUUeOsRl
— Patty Jenkins (@PattyJenks) February 12, 2019
I can not disagree. If we note the achievements of the craft and the format, how can we give these categories less value than the rest
Director of “Juneau” Jason Reitman also spoke out against the decision of the Academy.
Editing is filmmaking. Say it ain’t so, Oscars.
— Jason Reitman (@JasonReitman) February 12, 2019
Editing is filmmaking. “Oscar”, try to say that it is not
The director of “Zoe” Drake Doremus even proposed to boycott the ceremony.
What a disgrace #boycottoscars
— Drake Doremus (@drakedoremus) February 12, 2019
Last year’s winner of the award for the best montage, Lee Smith gave a comment toVariety: “It is rarely possible to attend the ceremony and get a nomination. Sadly, shortly before the award is presented, it’s hard to know that you’ll end up on a commercial break. ” He also noted that during breaks the audience usually leaves the hall, relaxes and communicates with each other. This can spoil the plans of the Academy to broadcast these moments live.
The president of the American Society of Cameramen Keys van Oostrum wrote an open letter to the cinema academy in which he concluded: “We cannot calmly indulge this decision without protesting.”
The reaction of actors, writers, journalists
What better way to celebrate achievements in film than to not publicly honor the people’s who’s job it is to literally film things.
— Seth Rogen (@Sethrogen) February 12, 2019
How can you better celebrate success in cinema than publicly refuse to honor people whose work literally consists in making films?
To hand out these awards in such a flagrantly dismissive fashion is unconscionable. Cinematography? An afterthought?
The Academy keeps sinking lower and lower w these ideas.https://t.co/nOlPUS3trE
— HABFoundation (@ABFalecbaldwin) February 12, 2019
To present awards in such a blatantly dismissive manner is unthinkable. Camera work? Secondary? With such ideas, the Academy continues to sink lower and lower.
The Academy is removing cinematography, editing and make up from the televised show?
This is just such a fundamentally stupid decision, I’m not even going to be bothered trying to be a smart arse about it.
It’s just too fucking dumb for words.
— Russell Crowe (@russellcrowe) February 12, 2019
Does the Academy remove camera work, montage and make-up from live broadcast? This is such a stupid decision that I won’t even try to joke. This is so stupid that you should not even talk about it.
As an Academy voter, I’m not happy about the decision to squeeze down some of the awards.
— Stephen King (@StephenKing) February 13, 2019
As a member of the Academy’s voting, I don’t like the decision to refuse to broadcast some nominations
Yeah, who needs to celebrate cinematography during the Oscars? I mean what has cinematography ever done for film? Good call, Academy. pic.twitter.com/t3nSAnyHKW
— Frank Pallotta (@frankpallotta) February 11, 2019
Yeah, who should celebrate the achievements of camera work during the Oscars? What has cinematography done for cinema? The right decision, Academy
TV show whose sole purpose is to package for public consumption the celebration of cinema craft announces that celebration of cinema craft is too boring for public consumption.https://t.co/QxXYBQzMJ4 via @thr
— Steve Yedlin (@steveyedlin) February 11, 2019
Twitter user response
Some have suggested that instead of the chosen nominations, one could abandon other aspects of the show.
Here’s an idea: why the network cut half hour of the red carpet and start the broadcast at 7:30 instead of 8:00 Also, please, if the show goes 15 or 30 minutes longer, nothing will happen to the network schedule it’s Sunday 11:00 pm
— Carlos Sotomayor (@csotom) February 12, 2019
Others decided to laugh it off.
Just heard the Academy is giving out Best Actress tonight in the parking lot of Rite Aid on Santa Monica and La Brea around 2am. This isn’t right.
— billy eichner (@billyeichner) February 13, 2019
I heard that the Academy was distributing the award for the best female role in the parking lot near the pharmacy in Santa Monica and La Brea around two o’clock in the morning. It is not right
The Academy is really asking for folx to not watch their little awards show. Like how dare you. Imagine the CHAOS that would break out if you told all these White dudebros to collect their little trophies for best screenplay or director or picture during commercial breaks!!! pic.twitter.com/s5Al3jTGN6
— Clarkisha Kent (@IWriteAllDay_) February 12, 2019
Users also launched the hashtag # PresentAll24 , calling on the Academy to show all 24 of the nominations for the live ceremony. They also noted that the decision to abandon the four categories would rather alienate the fans of the show, rather than attract new ones, and would not significantly affect the ratings.
Soo… We’re boycotting this year’s Oscars, right? #PresentAll24
— Daga (@daga_broh) February 12, 2019
So … We are boycotting the Oscar this year, right?
The more I think about it the more insane this is. How much time can they save ignoring 4 categories? Do they really think that means the show won’t run over? That more people will watch now? No. @TheAcademy is simply insulting what little audience they have left. #PresentAll24 https://t.co/UQhHvvkIRb
— P.S. You’re Wrong: A Pop Culture Podcast (@psyourewrong) February 12, 2019
Such a response is not the only outburst of anger that the Academy faced during the last Oscar season, full of errors and contradictions. In pursuit of ratings, bosses tried to introduce a nomination “For Outstanding Achievements in the Field of Popular Cinema”, wanted to refuse to broadcast musical numbers and called for the role of lead comedian Kevin Hart. He was forced to turn away from the proposal of the Academy after accusations of homophobia.