The Producers Guild has gotten in front of a pack of now-scrambling guilds in squaring dates for the 2020 awards season, a necessity after the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ move this month to shift the 2020 Oscars back two weeks.
The guild said today that its 31st annual PGA Awards is set for January 18, 2020, at the Fairmont Century Plaza in Los Angeles.
The Oscars date change — the 92nd Oscars will be held February 9, 2020, a shift from the previously set February 24 — was voted on by the AMPAS Board of Governors and designed to shorten awards season; it likely also means we’ll see nominations for that year’s awards announced as soon as the first week of January to accommodate the earlier date.
The move, announced August 8, mostly was overshadowed by the board’s other big decision to institute a Most Popular Movie category, which has met with a mixed reaction to say the least with few details worked out.
But the 2020 date change certainly got the attention of the guilds, especially those that hold their annual awards on the weekends where booking venues is tightest (the PGA Awards, for example, have been held at the Beverly Hilton, and will again in 2019, before moving to the Fairmont in 2020). Since the Oscar news (remember, APMAS would have had to re-book the Dolby Theater for the new date) there has been plenty of behind-the-scenes scrambling, with today’s announcement of the PGA date likely setting the baseline for others.
Next up will be changes among the other January-February awards regulars, among them the BAFTA Awards; the February 9 date is usually around the spot the influential British Academy’s awards show sits on, so that likely will have to change. Additional events outside the major guilds potentially on the move could include the Critics’ Choice Awards, which this year moved to January but could shift to December, where it once lived; the Spirit Awards, always held the weekend before the Oscars; and even the Santa Barbara Film Festival, a major West Coast pit stop for Oscar hopefuls, which in 2019 already is set to run from January 30 to, yep, February 9.
Another usual wrinkle that will be more of one in 2020: the Super Bowl, which awards shows avoid like the plague. Super Bowl LIV in South Florida is tentatively scheduled for Sunday, February 2.
The PGA Awards, meanwhile, are an annual Academy Awards bellwether. Last year, eventual Oscar Best Picture winner The Shape of Water solidified its status as front-runner with Guillermo del Toro winning the marquee Darryl F. Zanuck Award for Outstanding Producer of Theatrical Motion Pictures.