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Oscars 2019: Guillermo del Toro criticises the Academy for scheduling change


Guillermo del Toro criticised the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for their decision to change the scheduling of the 2019 Oscars ceremony.

It was revealed this morning that The Academy announced plans to reveal certain award winners during advertisement breaks in a bid to shorten the lengthy time of the Oscars ceremony.

As the Oscars try to keep audiences engaged amid dropping viewing figures, it has been revealed that four winners will be denied their chance on world television to accept their award. The affected categories are Cinematography, Film Editing, Live Action Short and the category of Makeup and Hairstyling.

The decision hasn’t been taken well by all those attributed to filmmaking. Guillermo del Toro, who won the coveted ‘Best Picture’ category last year for his film The Shape of Water, was quick to express his disappointment. “If I may: I would not presume to suggest what categories to cut during the Oscars show but – Cinematography and Editing are at the very heart of our craft. They are not inherited from a theatrical tradition or a literary tradition: they are cinema itself,” he said in a post on social media.

The post by Del Toro was also retweeted by filmmaker Alfonso Cuaron, who himself is nominations in the ‘Best Cinematography’ at the forthcoming ceremony for his film Roma.

Furthermore, director Jason Reitman has also followed suit in criticising the decision made by the Oscars, he said: “Editing is filmmaking. Say it ain’t so, Oscars.”

“The fundamental role of The Academy should be to recognise and showcase the talent and work of those who make movies better,” said Mexican writer and director Issa Lopez. “By limiting the spotlight to those who already have it, it makes its core job null,” she added.

On top of this news, Academy president John Bailey has confirmed plans to test out online streaming during parts of this year’s ceremony which takes place on February 24th: “With the help of our partners at ABC, we also will stream these four award presentations online for our global fans to enjoy, live, along with our audience,” he said. “Fans will be able to watch on and on the Academy’s social channels. The live stream is a first for our show, and will help further awareness and promotion of these award categories.”

Bailey did go on to mention that the chosen four categories to miss out this year will be guaranteed airtime in 2020, opening the door to a potential rotation policy when it comes to missing out.

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