If you’re wondering what the Oscars will look like this year, well … a few details are starting to emerge. We already know that Oscar’s broadcast will be split into two locations, but now, more will be released. Specifically, in a letter that producers Jesse Collins, Stacy Sher, and Stephen Soderberg sent to the nominees, they revealed that this would largely sound like a personal event. So yes, that means no zooming in, among other things. You can read the entire message below, but it’s an interesting plan, perhaps a little impractical because the current pandemic is barely behind us. Regardless, it’s pretty ambitious, and that’s cute, at least …
Here is the message now:
Congratulations on your nomination for the Oscar! To borrow disturbing hostess words, we are honored to be a part of your trip. We are confident that you are delighted that your fellow artists have known you in an exceptional year, and we hope, as your producers, to create an experience for you as a candidate that will live up to and enhance this achievement.
The first – and most obvious – point we want to make clear at this year’s fair is STORIES MATTER. We, as a sex, are obsessed with narration. It is the way we communicate. It is the way we learn. It is the way we evolve. We are surrounded by stories, we swim in them, and they are inescapable. And movies are – we believe – the most powerful form of storytelling ever invented. It is a unique art form in its blending of many other art forms, along with the unique skills required to execute it well. Then there’s the final piece: the audience. The fact that a movie can be experienced by millions of people in large groups at one time across the planet is another reason for its impressive reach and enduring influence.
Therefore, if the stories matter, the people who bring those stories to life matter. and she is you. To ensure each candidate gets equal fame, we hope that she will agree to an interview with you (briefly) in order to help us tell the story of your path until April 25th. We want to highlight the connections between all of us who work on films and show that the process is uniquely intimate, collaborative, and enjoyable (usually. Hopefully?).
In terms of the practicalities of the show, our plan is to organize an intimate in-person event at Union Station in Los Angeles, with additional viewing elements direct from the Dolby Theater in Hollywood. Of course, your first thought is can this be done safely? The answer is yes, it can. We treat the event as an active movie set, with specially designed testing rhythms to ensure accurate results, including an on-site COVID safety team with PCR testing capability. There will be specific instructions for those traveling from outside Los Angeles, and other instructions for those of you who are already in Los Angeles. All of this will come directly to you from the Academy to ensure a safe and carefree evening (glimpse into the future?).
For those who cannot attend due to scheduling or constant unease about travel, we want you to know that there will be no option to enlarge the view. We are trying our best to provide a safe and enjoyable evening to all of you personally, as well as to all the millions of movie fans around the world, and we feel that the virtual thing will diminish these efforts.
Our talk about sermons. We think the show isn’t “very long” due to the speeches. Having said that, we like to say this: With great freedom comes a great responsibility, and if you are wondering what we mean by that exactly, then we mean reading the room. Tell a story. If you’re thanking someone, say their name, not their title. Don’t tell my boss, Biggie, just say Biggie. Make it personal. The audience leans back when they see a winner with a piece of paper in his hand. The good news is you have to be very comfortable around the time of the show because you’ll be in the pre-show gathering at Union Station for ninety minutes with your fellow nominees and their guests (the nominees and their guests will only attend by the way. Oh, and the presenters!). We aim to feel informal and have a sense of humor.
You’re wondering about the dress code (as you should). We aim to incorporate inspiration and ambition, which means in verbatim words the formal look is totally cool if you want to go there, but casuals aren’t.
Finally, it has lost a lot and a lot has changed since the last Academy Awards. We will admit that while reminding viewers of the power and imperative of stories to propel us forward, and how films, in particular, create a special kind of connection between people all over the world.
We look forward to seeing you on April 25th.
With all our love movie,
The 93rd Academy Awards Producers
Stay tuned for more …