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The Academy ponders delaying 93rd Oscars ceremony, extending window of eligibility

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS)'s board of directors also introduced a new set of changes for the future which includes keeping the best picture nominees at 10.

Sonal Pandya

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) board of governors are set to have a Zoom meeting today to decide whether to delay the 93rd ceremony which is due to be held on 28 February 2021. Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, theatres around the world are shuttered and film shoots are only now slowly being restarted. The AMPAS will also decide if the eligibility period for 2020 should be extended beyond 31 December 2020.

According to a report in TheHollywoodReporter.com, the board also has to decide when to host its annual Governors Awards ceremony which is usually held mid-November. The report suggests while honorary Oscars recipients will be announced this year, the ceremony too might be postponed.

The AMPAS is looking ahead to many new changes in its future. Just last week, the organisation announced that they would return to a 10-nominee Best Picture category from the 94th edition, and set new representation and inclusion standards for diversity to be introduced in the coming years. These changes will not impact next year's edition.

AMPAS CEO Dawn Hudson shared in a statement, “While the Academy has made strides, we know there is much more work to be done in order to ensure equitable opportunities across the board. The need to address this issue is urgent. To that end, we will amend—and continue to examine—our rules and procedures to ensure that all voices are heard and celebrated.”

A new task force will implement these new diversity standards by 31 July. The AMPAS will also start a quarterly viewing process via the online Academy Screening Room for the 94th Oscars, allowing members to see eligible films around the year to "broaden their exposure" and "level the playing field".

The AMPAS will also establish a new Office of Representation, Inclusion and Equity that will oversee the first phase of diversity and inclusion initiatives, called Academy Aperture 2025, lead by COO Christine Simmons.

Over the last five years, the AMPAS has increase representation through its membership and included many new members of international film community, especially from India. The Academy's new members are expected to be announced next month.

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