First the Academy Awards announced they’d be including a new category for “Popular Film,” and now they taketh that award away.
The New York Times reports that the Academy is actually NOT adding the popular film category for the 2019 broadcast. This isn’t surprising given the announcement was met with a wave of backlash, both from people who saw no distinction between “popular” and “best” movie, as well as members who thought awarding movies based on their popularity was a disservice to the ceremony. Many suspected the award may have been designed for Black Panther, a superior Best Picture-level superhero movie that might have gotten sidelined to the popular category.
But the award might not be going away entirely. “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,” the Academy’s chief executive told the Times, and added that the award “merits further study.”
All I ask is that the Academy please, please get its shit together. We all know ratings are plunging, but there’s a lot the broadcast can do besides adding weird new categories to get viewers to tune in. For example, I love strobe lights. Perhaps the Oscars could use some. I also love Tiffany Haddish—she should host instead of someone from the 10-person white dude comedian/late night host pool the Academy always picks from. Or maybe the Academy can hire Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty to open every award for some added drama! Who knows!
Get it together, golden boys.