{ Page-Title / Story-Title }

News American

Coronavirus update: Oscars pushed back by 2 months, eligibility period extended to February 2021

Next year’s delayed ceremony will be only the fourth time in their 93-year history that the awards have been postponed.

Sonal Pandya

The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) has officially delayed its Oscar awards ceremony by two months in the wake of the global COVID-19 pandemic. The ceremony was originally due to be held on 28 February 2021. It will now be held on 25 April 2021.

Moreover, the eligibility period for this year has been extended until 28 February 2021 as most theatres in the US are still closed. For this year only, the AMPAS is also allowing films that were released online to be eligible.

The Oscar nominations will be announced on 15 March 2021 and the Academy’s film museum, which was due to be inaugurated this December, will now open on 30 April 2021, after the ceremony.

AMPAS president David Rubin and CEO Dawn Hudson said in a statement, “For over a century, movies have played an important role in comforting, inspiring and entertaining us during the darkest of times. They certainly have this year. Our hope, in extending the eligibility period and our Awards date, is to provide the flexibility filmmakers need to finish and release their films without being penalized for something beyond anyone’s control. This coming Oscars and the opening of our new museum will mark an historic moment, gathering movie fans around the world to unite through cinema."

For now, AMPAS indicated that the ceremony will be held live and telecast on ABC. Next year’s delayed ceremony marks only the fourth time the awards have been postponed. It was first delayed in 1938 on account of floods in Los Angeles. The second time it was postponed was because of Dr Martin Luther King Jr’s assassination in 1968, and again in 1981 after the attempted assassination of then president Ronald Reagan.

The extended eligibility also means the submission deadlines for the different general and specialty categories have been changed to 15 January 2021 and 1 December 2020, respectively. Consequently, the Academy's Sci-Tech awards and Governors awards, where honorary Oscars are presented, will also be  postponed. No new dates for them have been announced, but it seems likely that they will be held next year.

Related topics

Oscars Coronavirus