Word went out to Academy members today about a big change in ballot procedure for three categories. Until now, members who wanted to vote for Best Documentary Feature, Live Action Short or Animated Short would need to trek to designated screening locations where they got their hands stamped as certified proof that they’d seen all the nominated films before voting. (Not 100% sure about about the hand stamp part, but I like the image). Previously this meant Oscar winners in these three categories were always selected by a relatively small number of members with lots of time on their hands. But that’s all history. Now each voter will be sent screeners for each the nominees. If that sounds like an expensive burden to place on filmmakers whose movies don’t ordinarily have lavish FYC budgets, don’t worry; the Academy is covering the cost. (Gold Derby)

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  • Hmm. Obviously there will be people that will vote even though they’ve left the screeners unviewed, but seems like the shorts categories are so unpredictable it’s really hard to tell how much this will change things.

    Hopefully the screeners will get leaked and I’ll get a chance to watch Adam and Dog and Head Over Heels before the Shorts International showing.

  • “the Academy is covering the cost.”

    I feel guilty feelings…

  • Christophe

    kudos to the acad for finally doing the right thing! now let’s do the same for best foreign film, shall we?

  • Rob Y

    Glad to see the Academy do this. It is a step in the right direction. They should also allow the movies/shorts to be watched on iTunes. That will help the filmmakers raise $$$.

  • Zach

    Question is, will this help or hurt big-name contenders like Maggie Simpson?

  • Christophe

    well, maggie simpson already got snubbed by the acting branch in favor of Q. Wallis so I wouldn’t be surprised if she were to lose to a no-name contender in the anim. short category too. Star power doesn’t always rule the day at the oscars and there’s also the risk of splitting votes with Paperman the Pixar short.

  • Mike H

    Good idea but why are they leaving the documentary shorts out of the deal?

  • Evan

    Agreed, Mike H. Why leave out the doc shorts?

    The Foreign Language Film nominees would also be a good addition, but I can imagine that even if they wanted to include those in these rule changes, Amour’s nomination precludes that this year as it gives unfair advantage to one of the BP nominations.

  • Bernard


    I adore Paperman, but it’s a Disney short, not a Pixar one.

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