A column chronicling conversations and events on the awards circuit.
Well it is all just about over but the counting, and in fact I would guess PriceWaterhouse accountants have even finished that at this point. What that means is two numbers crunchers out of everyone in the whole world are now looking at every pundit’s predictions, including mine I suppose, and laughing hysterically about how we got it all wrong. Or not. One Academy member called me this week to say essentially this looks to be one of the most predictable years ever. “I think just about everyone is probably going to win their office pool,” he laughed.Shutterstock
He might have a point because the four acting categories appear to be in the bag, at least if we are to go by every precursor show preceding the Oscars that have chosen , in lockstep, Joaquin Phoenix, Renee Zellweger, Brad Pitt, and Laura Dern . And with all its guild wins, plus the Golden Globes and BAFTA 1917 seems as close to a lock for Best Picture and a possible sweep as we have seen in some time . So the difference in glory or disgrace with your Oscar pool ballot just might come down to who wins Best Live Action Short. A lot of the talk at various parties including last night’s Universal and Focus Features celebration at Spago, as well as today’s Publicists Guild Awards at the Beverly Hilton revolved around possible upsets. Are all of the indicators incorrect this year? Can there be a shocker looming Sunday? That would be fun , but don’t bet the condo on it. This is a year where there seems to be some fairly unanimous agreement in terms of those soothsayers who try to foretell what names will be in those envelopes.
WHAT YOUR BOOKIE SAYS ABOUT THE OSCARSTodd Wawrychuk/AMPAS
If you want to drive yourself crazy though try checking the various oddsmakers who are out there giving us the book on winners, apparently using whatever data they have picked up by listening to prognosticators. You can actually bet money in New Jersey , Indiana, and the UK , even though technically those two PriceWaterhouse accountants could probably clean up knowing who the winners are already. And while you are at it a lot of the bookies are taking bets on things other than just the winners. For instance you can wager on stuff like the gender of the first presenter on stage Female 2/5 , Male 2/1, Transgender 20/1; How many times Kobe or Mamba will be said 5/6; Presenters who put on glasses before reading the cue card Under 2 1/2 -1/4 – Over 2 1/2 – 5/2; Who will Best Actor thank first Academy 1/1- husband, wife, partner 5/2-director 3/1-mother 7/1- God 10/1; Will “Trump” be said during the broadcast? NO 2/3...
With most major releases indefinitely delayed, film festivals postponed, and studios dropping their theatrical releases on digital left and right due to the coronavirus COVID-19 crisis, awards season is going to look very different by the time it rolls around in the fall. And no, it won’t be Bloodshot and Sonic the Hedgehog gunning for best picture, as many online have joked.
The Hollywood Foreign Press Association is making significant changes to its long-standing rules for the Golden Globes awards eligibility that expands the formats where an eligible film can be first released, including subscription streaming services, subscription cable channels, and broadcast TV. With these changes to the Golden Globes eligibility rules, other awards bodies like the Academy Awards, will likely soon follow.
Deadline reports that the HFPA announced that it would be altering its rules for Golden Globe motion picture eligibility and screenings for this year, which would — for the first time in history — open up the films eligible for the top best picture prizes drama and musical/comedy to those that were first released on streaming services, cable, and broadcast TV. However, producers and studios must still prove they had a “bona fide theatrical release planned to begin in Los Angeles during the period from March 15 to April 30 2020.”
This is a change that would likely have come at some point anyway, with the rise of streaming platforms who have become awards heavy-hitters like Netflix, Amazon Video, and Hulu, but has been expedited by the coronavirus epidemic, which has forced the shuttering of theaters across the country and delayed film releases and productions.
“The HFPA’s reminders list committee will consider application of this suspension of the rules on a case-by-case basis when compiling the annual Golden Globe reminders list in the fall,” the HFPA says. “The HFPA will continue to assess the impact of the COVID-19 epidemic on motion picture and television distribution and exhibition and may extend these suspensions of the Golden Globe award rules and/or may make other temporary variations to those rules as it considers appropriate in the future.”
Exhibition requirements have been temporarily suspended, except for the rule that films must be released seven days prior to midnight on December 31 of the qualifying year. The HFPA has broadened eligible feature film release platforms — previously only pay-per-view services and theaters — to the alternate formats like streaming services, subscription cable channels, and broadcast TV. But this expansion opens up a whole host of questions: what does this mean for the Golden Globe categories dedicated to TV movies that are dominated by HBO? Could a film that premiered at a film festival but picked up by a cable channel now be...