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Entertainment10 days before show time, a full-on revolt over the Oscars

23:55  15 february  2019
23:55  15 february  2019 Source:   ap.org

In snub of Netflix, AMC and Regal cinemas won't show 'Roma' as part of Oscars showcases

In snub of Netflix, AMC and Regal cinemas won't show 'Roma' as part of Oscars showcases Two of the largest cinema chains in the U.S. won't show Netflix's "Roma" as part of their annual best-picture Oscars showcases, in a further sign that chilly relations haven't thawed between major exhibitors and the streaming entertainment company. Neither AMC Theatres nor Regal has exhibited "Roma" prior to Tuesday's announcement of the Academy Award nominations. The theater chains have cited Netflix's windowing strategy for the movie, which involved a three-week limited theatrical run prior to its streaming debut. "Roma" received 10 Academy Award nominations, including a nod for best picture.

This is normally the time of year when Oscar hopefuls are readying acceptance speeches that almost always begin with a few words of gratitude for the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences. But that sentiment has been hard to come by in the torturous and troubled lead-up to the 91st Academy

This is normally the time of year when Oscar hopefuls are readying acceptance speeches that almost always begin with a few words of gratitude for the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences. But that sentiment has been hard to come by in the torturous and troubled lead-up to the 91st Academy

10 days before show time, a full-on revolt over the Oscars © The Associated Press FILE - In this Feb. 26, 2017 file photo, Oscar statuettes appear backstage at the Oscars in Los Angeles. Responding to widespread backlash to the fact that four Oscars will be presented during commercial breaks at the 91st Academy Awards, the film academy has issued a statement reiterating that all Academy Award winners will still be included in the broadcast on Feb. 24, just not all live. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP, File)

Would anyone — anyone at all — like to thank the academy?

This is normally the time of year when Oscar hopefuls are readying acceptance speeches that almost always begin with a few words of gratitude for the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences. But that sentiment has been hard to come by in the torturous and troubled lead-up to the 91st Academy Awards.

Lin-Manuel Miranda Responds to Oscars Best-Song Performance Shocker

Lin-Manuel Miranda Responds to Oscars Best-Song Performance Shocker “Hamilton” creator Lin-Manuel Miranda has called the news of a mostly performance-less Oscars ceremony “disappointing.” Variety exclusively learned that only two of this year’s five-Oscar nominated songs may be performed live at the Academy Awards show on Feb. 24. Sources said Kendrick Lamar and SZA’s “All the Stars” from “Black Panther” and Lady Gaga’s “Shallow” from “A Star Is Born” were chosen for performances on the telecast. “The 1st time I stayed up to watch the Oscars, it was because I LOVED The Little Mermaid & they were going to sing songs from the movie I loved on The Oscars,” the “Mary Poppins Returns” star tweeted.

This is normally the time of year when Oscar hopefuls are readying acceptance speeches that almost always begin with a few words of gratitude for the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences. But that sentiment has been hard to come by in the torturous and troubled lead-up to the 91st Academy

This is normally the time of year when Oscar hopefuls are readying acceptance speeches that almost always begin with a few words of gratitude for the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences. But that sentiment has been hard to come by in the torturous and troubled lead-up to the 91st Academy

After a litany of public-relations disasters, backtracks and missteps, the latest dust-up surrounds the film academy's plans to remove four categories from the live portion of Feb. 24's broadcast, including cinematography and editing, arguably the two most foundational components of moviemaking. The academy, desperate to reverse sliding ratings, says a shortened show must go on.

On Wednesday evening, dozens of Hollywood heavyweights — including Martin Scorsese, Spike Lee, Brad Pitt, cinematographer Roger Deakins and director Damien Chazelle — issued an open-letter to the academy's leadership blasting the decision to not air the four awards, which also include live-action short and hairstyling and makeup, live on the ABC telecast.

Oscars to Feature All Five Best Song Nominees On Telecast After All (EXCLUSIVE)

Oscars to Feature All Five Best Song Nominees On Telecast After All (EXCLUSIVE) The Motion Picture Academy, responding to a widespread backlash to its initial plan to only spotlight two of the best original song nominees on the Oscarcast, is now planning to have all five nominated songs performed on the Feb. 24 show, Variety has learned. Earlier today, the Academy tweeted that Jennifer Hudson would perform “I’ll Fight,” the Diane Warren-penned song from the documentary “RBG.

Would anyone — anyone at all — like to thank the academy? This is normally the time of year when Oscar hopefuls are readying acceptance speeches that almost always begin with a few words of gratitude for the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences.

This is normally the time of year when Oscar hopefuls are readying acceptance speeches that almost always begin with a few words of gratitude for the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences. But that sentiment has been hard to come by in the torturous and troubled lead-up to the 91st Academy

"Relegating these essential cinematic crafts to lesser status in this 91st Academy Awards ceremony is nothing less than an insult to those of us who have devoted our lives and passions to our chosen profession," the group wrote. "When the recognition of those responsible for the creation of outstanding cinema is being diminished by the very institution whose purpose it is to protect it, then we are no longer upholding the spirit of the Academy's promise to celebrate film as a collaborative art form."

The Academy responded with a letter of its own, blaming "inaccurate reporting and social media posts" for "a chain of misinformation." Signed by academy president John Bailey, a cinematographer, and other officers from the academy's board of governors, the letter sought to assure members that the four winning speeches will be included in the broadcast (just not live, or with a walk to the stage) and that in future years, four to six different categories will be similarly truncated.

The Oscars to Air Without a Host

The Oscars to Air Without a Host It’s official: The Oscars are going from Hart-less to just plain host-less. The 91st Academy Awards will be presented without the aid of a celebrity emcee, following weeks of controversy surrounding its original selection. A spokesperson for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences confirmed the no-host decision on Monday. To refresh your memory, Kevin Hart announced on Dec. 4, 2018 that he would be hosting the annual salute to cinema, calling it the “opportunity of a lifetime” and promising a “special” evening for all.

This is normally the time of year when Oscar hopefuls are readying acceptance speeches that almost always The academy, desperate to reverse sliding ratings, says a shortened show must go on. "People need to calm down about it before the Oscars and we only have like 10 days ," says Zophres.

This is normally the time of year when Oscar hopefuls are readying acceptance speeches that almost always begin with a few words of gratitude for the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences. But that sentiment has been hard to come by in the torturous and troubled lead-up to the 91st Academy

After years of #OscarSoWhite backlash, one infamous envelope mix-up and the reckoning that followed the expulsion of Harvey Weinstein from the academy, this year's Academy Awards drama has been self-inflicted. In response to last year's all-time low of 26.5 million viewers, the Oscars — the grandest and most glamorous award show ever created — are shrinking. And nobody likes it.

"People in general have a hard time with change. Change is sometimes hard to swallow. And I think the way that the news came out, it came out in the wrong way," says Mary Zophres, one of the 54 members of the board of governors and a costume designer nominated this year for "The Ballad of Buster Scruggs," at an event celebrating nominees hosted by industry site The Wrap. "But there is a need to make sure that the ratings are competitive."

The academy's headaches began after it last summer trotted out the induction of a "popular film Oscar." The plan sparked such outrage (Rob Lowe pronounced the film industry dead, "survived by sequels, tent-poles and vertical integration") that the new award was scuttled within a month.

Bette Midler to Perform 'Mary Poppins Returns' Song at Oscars Ceremony

Bette Midler to Perform 'Mary Poppins Returns' Song at Oscars Ceremony Bette Midler will be taking the stage at this year's 91st Oscars ceremony to perform “The Place Where Lost Things Go” from 'Mary Poppins Returns.'

This is normally the time of year when Oscar hopefuls are readying acceptance speeches that almost always begin with a few words of gratitude for the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences. But that sentiment has been hard to come by in the torturous and troubled lead-up to the 91st Academy

This is normally the time of year when Oscar hopefuls are readying acceptance speeches that almost always begin with a few words of gratitude for the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences. But that sentiment has been hard to come by in the torturous and troubled lead-up to the 91st Academy

Then Kevin Hart announced, himself, that he was hosting this year's awards. When many took issue with his old homophobic tweets, the comedian initially "chose to pass on the apology," inflaming the backlash. Within hours, he withdrew as host and, finally supplied an apology to the LGBTQ community. The Oscars are now host-less for only the fifth time in its 91-year history. The most recent, in 1989, resulted in an infamous duet between Snow White and Rob Lowe.

Other plans to tweak tradition also backfired. After first planning to limit the best song nominee performances, the academy confirmed that all songs will indeed be performed. "They made the right decision to include all the songs," said Diane Warren, a nominee for the "RBG" song "I'll Fight." ''It wouldn't be fair to just have two songs. That's basically saying those other songs don't matter."

Some have blamed ABC, which owns the Oscar broadcast rights for the next decade, for pressuring the academy into some of these measures. ABC declined to comment.

Still, the negative response from prominent academy members was more than the academy's leadership was expecting. Alfonso Cuaron, who's nominated for four Oscars including best cinematography, has been among the most vocal critics, declaring: "No one single film has ever existed without CINEMAtography and editing." Guillermo del Toro, whose "The Shape of Water" won best picture and best director at last year's ceremony, said cinematography and editing "are cinema itself."

Oscars' pet pick 'A Star Is Born' has flamed out in awards season, and that's heartbreaking

Oscars' pet pick 'A Star Is Born' has flamed out in awards season, and that's heartbreaking Lady Gaga's "A Star Is Born" was supposed to be the darling of awards season. But as Oscar Sunday approaches, its award tally has disappointed. Why?

"I don't like it. I don't think that's a cool deal. I'm an artist so I believe we've all worked really hard, we've nurtured our gifts and we should all be able to celebrate them with the world," says Regina King, a nominee for best supporting actress. "It just doesn't seem like 15 minutes is gonna make that big of a difference."

But the academy is insistent on getting the normally four hour-plus telecast down to three hours. Ratings for all award shows have declined in recent years, but it remains to be seen whether a shorter show will have any effect on larger viewing habit transformations.

What is clear is that the challenges of producing a big-tent, for-everybody broadcast are growing as mass audiences continue to fracture. For an institution like the academy, which has year-round involvement in things like film preservation and a much-delayed $400 million Los Angeles museum, the Oscar broadcast is the primary revenue generator.

"They make about six or seven million dollars a year off of the Academy Awards on television which pays for the academy," says Michael Douglas, a two-time Oscar winner. "How do you put together an entertaining show versus (honor the winners)? So, I understand as far as a television viewing audience show, they don't do a very good job."

"I just saw the Grammys — best opening I've seen in a long time," Douglas added. "Theirs is a three-and-a-half hour show that only has nine awards, you know? Because it's all musical productions."

But like the Oscars, Hollywood is getting smaller. This year, the 83-year-old 20th Century Fox, one of the "Big Six" major studios, will become part of the Walt Disney Co. More change is afoot. Netflix could this year win its first best picture Academy Award thanks to Cuaron's "Roma."

Oscars: Women, People of Color Triumph on Night of Firsts (and Seconds)

Oscars: Women, People of Color Triumph on Night of Firsts (and Seconds) Oscar Sunday marked a night of important firsts — and seconds — for diverse artists and filmmakers and their Hollywood contributions. The 2019 telecast started making history almost immediately. After Regina King accepted best supporting actress for “If Beale Street Could Talk,” Ruth E. Carter became the first African American woman to ever win best costume design, for her work on Marvel’s “Black Panther.” “I dreamed of this night and I prayed for this night honestly…what it would mean not just for me but for young people coming behind me,” Carter told press backstage at Hollywood’s Dolby Theater.

The irony is that all the attention on the host-less, controversial Oscar broadcast has meant no one is talking about the movies. And this year's nominees, including the year's No. 1 domestic hit, "Black Panther," are one of the most-watched groups in years — exactly what the academy craves.

But with less than two weeks to go, some worry that the dust won't settle by show time.

"People need to calm down about it before the Oscars and we only have like 10 days," says Zophres. "What worries me more is actual unrest in the building before, during or after. So they need to make sure that everybody is under control."

___

Jill Dobson contributed to this report.

Related slideshow: The 2019 Academy Awards Nominations (via Photo Services)

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