The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences may not have an Oscar host, but it still has a horse race going on (if the results of last night’s Golden Globes count as evidence). In the midst of all the chaos surrounding the actual telecast itself, the Academy’s 8176 eligible voting members have the task of deciding just what movies will be anointed as the year’s best. Balloting for the 91st annual Academy Awards begins today and runs through Monday, January 14.
For the first time ever the whole process is online; the Academy has completely ended the practice of making paper ballots available.
Nominees will be chosen in 24 categories, with shortlists having already consolidated the contenders in nine of those categories including Documentary Feature, Documentary Short Subject, Makeup and Hairstyling, Original Music Score, Original Song, Animated Short, Live Action Short, Visual Effects, and Foreign Language Film. In terms of the latter contest, Academy members eligible to participate in the nominations round of voting will view the shortlisted films and must see all nine before casting their ballots.
The nominations will be announced Tuesday, January 22 and this is shaping up to be possibly the most commercial, audience-friendly lineup of Best Picture nominees in years, with the likes of Black Panther, Bohemian Rhapsody, A Star Is Born, A Quiet Place, Mary Poppins Returns, Green Book and others in hot pursuit of the big prize. On the opposite end of that scale, most pundits predict the nominations will field the first-ever Best Picture nomination for Netflix with Alfonso Cuarón’s Roma which would technically become the lowest-grossing Best Picture nominee in history since Netflix doesn’t report box office grosses.
The 91st annual Academy Awards air Sunday, February 24 on ABC. The Academy is promising the Oscarcast will come in at 3 hours and no longer.