Covid-19 has prompted a massive swath of cancellations—festivals, weddings, vacations, everyone’s future. And now, even the Oscars are on the chopping block, even though they take place in February. So much for those “packed churches by Easter” plans.
Variety says that the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences is already considering moving the Oscars, currently scheduled for February 28, 2021. A source told the publication that “[i]t’s likely they’ll be postponed,” though the Academy declined to comment.
February seems far away, but it’s certainly not off-base to assume we’ll still be social distancing next winter. A second or even third wave of the virus is possible. It’s expected to take 12 to 18 months to produce and mass distribute a vaccine, and even though there’s some promising news on that front, even an expedited timeframe won’t get everyone safely vaccinated by early next year. Companies in hotspots like New York are telling employees to expect to work from home for six months to a year. Wedding venues are canceling events up until spring 2021. The NFL might be optimistic about its season, but epidemiologists aren’t.
So, frankly, it makes sense to reschedule a major affair like the Oscars early, rather than hope for the best and scramble to move things last minute. Perhaps we can simply dole out awards for 2020 movies in 2022—not like there’ll be much out next year, anyway.