Netflix defeats Steven Spielberg in its Oscars 2020 battle

Jacob Stolworthy
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Netflix defeats Steven Spielberg in its Oscars 2020 battle

Films released on Netflix will still be able to compete at next year’s Oscars despite opposition from Steven Spielberg.

The Jurassic Park director argued that streaming service projects should be eligible for Emmys, the ceremony that awards television shows, as opposed to the Academy Awards.

However, the board of governors voted in favour of Netflix films maintaining rule two, which permits Oscars eligibility.

The rule dictates that films will be able to be nominated if they’ve had more than a one-week run at a theatre in Los Angeles.

Academy president John Bailey said: “We support the theatrical experience as integral to the art of motion pictures, and this weighed heavily in our discussions.

“Our rules currently require theatrical exhibition, and also allow for a broad selection of films to be submitted for Oscars consideration.

“We plan to further study the profound changes occurring in our industry and continue discussions with our members about these issues.“

Netflix is likely to have a big contender next year, in the form of Martin Scorsese’s gangster film The Irishman.

The board also announced the name change of the Best Foreign Language Film category; it’ll now be called Best International Feature Film.

Explaining the decision, Larry Karaszewski and Diane Weyermann, co-chairs of the International Feature Film Committee, said: “We have noted that the reference to ‘Foreign’ is outdated within the global filmmaking community.

“We believe that International Feature Film better represents this category, and promotes a positive and inclusive view of filmmaking, and the art of film as a universal experience.”

The 92nd Academy Awards will be held on Sunday February 9 2020, at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood.

Additional reporting by Agencies