The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences is abandoning the idea of a popular film Oscar®, at least for the 2019 ceremony. The Academy only announced the new category a month ago and it was met with harsh criticism all across the film industry. Now, they’ve wisely elected to give the category a little more thought before potentially including it in future ceremonies.
This changes nothing for Marvel Studios, as they have already confirmed plans to present Black Panther as a Best Picture contender regardless of the popular film category. If Black Panther gets a Best Picture nomination, perhaps the Academy will see that the popular film category isn’t necessary after all and just let the idea die a quiet death.
If, however, Black Panther is snubbed and the ratings for the Oscars® telecast continue to slide, the Academy can point to that as an argument for why a popular film category is essential.
You can read the Academy’s statement on the popular film category below:
While remaining committed to celebrating a wide spectrum of movies, the Academy announced today that it will not present the new Oscars® category at the upcoming 91st awards. The Academy recognized that implementing any new award nine months into the year creates challenges for films that have already been released. The Board of Governors continues to be actively engaged in discussions, and will examine and seek additional input regarding this category.
“There has been a wide range of reactions to the introduction of a new award, and we recognize the need for further discussion with our members,” said Academy CEO Dawn Hudson. “We have made changes to the Oscars over the years—including this year—and we will continue to evolve while also respecting the incredible legacy of the last 90 years.”