The Academy has added a new category for “Casting,” which the BAFTA already has. This is an interesting change to the lineup. I’m always happy to have another category to predict. I really hope that the Academy considers bringing Best Picture back down to five. I think it’s something they should consider now, given the state of the industry. Since the Academy and the industry seem to be focused more on a global audience, and they already have a category for “International Feature,” perhaps they ought to change the rules for that category such that any film can compete in that category, not just submissions by the country of origin.
Here is their press release:
The Board of Governors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced today the creation of an annual competitive Academy Award® for Achievement in Casting, beginning with the 98th Academy Awards® for films released in 2025.
“Casting directors play an essential role in filmmaking, and as the Academy evolves, we are proud to add casting to the disciplines that we recognize and celebrate,” said Academy CEO Bill Kramer and Academy President Janet Yang. “We congratulate our Casting Directors Branch members on this exciting milestone and for their commitment and diligence throughout this process.”
“On behalf of the members of the Casting Directors Branch, we’d like to thank the Board of Governors, the Awards Committee and Academy leadership for their support. This award is a deserved acknowledgment of our casting directors’ exceptional talents and a testament to the dedicated efforts of our branch,” said Academy Casting Directors Branch governors Richard Hicks, Kim Taylor-Coleman and Debra Zane.
Category rules for eligibility and voting for the inaugural award will be announced in April 2025 with the complete 98th Academy Awards Rules. The specifics of the award’s presentation will be determined by the Academy’s Board of Governors and its administrative leadership at a future date.
The Casting Directors Branch was created in July 2013. There are currently nearly 160 members of the branch.
The last new award category created was Best Animated Feature Film, established in 2001.
Here are the BAFTA nominees for casting since 2019 (when it started):
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
The Personal History of David Copperfield
The Two Popes
Calm with Horses
Judas and the Black Messiah
Promising Young Woman
West Side Story
The Hand of God
All Quiet on the Western Front
Everything Everywhere All at Once
Triangle of Sadness
All of Us Strangers
Anatomy of a Fall
How to Have Sex
Killers of the Flower Moon