Following a meeting on Wednesday between the Academy, representatives from the studios, and talent publicists, details about this year’s Oscars telecast are beginning to emerge.
It was revealed on Tuesday that numerous key categories will not be shown on the air during the live program. Instead, in order to provide a more streamlined and television-friendly presentation, eight honors will be presented one hour before the on-camera part, and then edited into the March 27 ceremony.
The industry’s reaction to the Oscars’ new structure was overwhelmingly positive. Though other craft guilds were courteous, their public pronouncements suggested that they had been hurt. Multiple sources tell Variety that members of the music branch are currently discussing asking the score nominees to boycott, urging the nominees for best original score — Nicholas Britell (“Don’t Look Up”), Germaine Franco (“Encanto”), Jonny Greenwood (“The Power of the Dog”), Alberto Iglesias (“Parallel Mothers”), and Hans Zimmer (“Dune”) — to boycott the ceremony in protest. There have also been requests for the directors and other branches to stand up for the craftspeople in all of these categories.
Earlier in the program, awards will be given out for documentary short, film editing, makeup and hairstyling, original score, production design, animated short, live action short, and sound. The trophies will be awarded prior to the start of the show and will then be edited into the broadcast.
The Dolby Theatre, where the Academy Awards are hosted, has a seating capacity of 3,300, but it will be lowered to around 2,500 in order to keep attendees safe.
The Dolby’s main orchestra level, which includes the Parterre, generally seats roughly 1,460 people. That area will be decreased to about 600 people, with the main level seating about 212 people. Variety reports that there will also be “decking seats, similar to last year’s telecast, with tables and chairs to fill in voids.” This year’s Oscars include around 216 individual nominations, and all nominees, together with their guests, presenters, and performers, will be seated on the main floor. The mezzanine will be reserved for all other participants.
To avoid crowds and congestion, nominees’ arrival timings will be staggered, as was done last year.
The eight categories are planned to be presented and awarded in 30 to 40 minutes, starting one hour before the transmission. Major A-list nominees are expected to be outside the Dolby during that time, walking the 900-foot red carpet, taking photos, and conducting interviews with magazines and networks.
According to Academy sources, all eight winners’ acceptance speeches will be televised during the telecast, but it is unclear whether the speeches themselves would be trimmed down.
As previously stated, all nominees and attendees must pass two PCR tests with negative findings before arriving at the event.
Will Packer will produce this year’s show, which will be hosted by Amy Schumer, Regina Hall, and Wanda Sykes.