Oscars 2010: Even More Changes

 When the Academy announced in June that the number of Best Picture nominees from increase from five to ten, I was skeptical. Although I still am skeptical, a recent announcement that the voting procedure for Best Picture has made me less worried.

The voting procedure (which is similar to how MLB selects the MVP, Cy Young Award – yes, I’m a nerd, I know) goes something like this:

In the past, once the nominees were announced, Academy members voted only for the one film they thought should win the award, and the film with the most votes won. But with so many nominees next year, it’s feasible that a movie could have won Best Picture with only 11 percent of the vote, which seems crazy. So now, once the 10 nominees are named, voters will rank the films from 1 to 10. All the No. 1 votes will be counted, and if no film has more than 50 percent of the vote (which seems highly unlikely), the last-place film will be eliminated and the voters who voted for that film will have their No. 2 votes counted instead. That process will continue until one film has a majority of the votes. […] there is a chance that the film that ends up winning won’t actually have the most No. 1 votes, but will instead emerge the victor in the second, third, or fourth rounds. […]

Make any sense? I had to read that a few times to understand it myself. Changing the voting procedure is the best way to ensure that the best film does indeed win. But until the actual awards ceremony in February and I see what happens, I’m still going to be apprehensive. How do you feel about this? Will it make any difference at all?

4 thoughts on “Oscars 2010: Even More Changes”

  1. I have to say I'm a bit apprehensive as well. We all know that the Academy Awards are far from perfect but at the same time is it still the Oscars if they start changing something new every year? Doesn't it eventually become a completely new ceremony?

  2. Good point.

    It is also important to remember that the Academy Awards have hardly the same structure from when it first began in 1928. That is what makes the ceremony interesting because like cinema itself, the Oscars are a continually changing production that reflect how cinema has evolved.

    What will be interesting to see is if these recent changes actually increase the telecast's ratings.

  3. Hmm. I don't think I like this…now it means that person's favourite won't win but the most recurring…which means it not the Best Picture…it's the most popular…I mean just let it be the number ones only…or at most the top 2. It's not like people are really going to take time out to rank each film as they feel. they'll have their favourite and then think for example oh, Bright Star was around all the time…I'll put that at number five…. And so on…

    Don't like this idea.

  4. Good God – are they picking a Best Picture, or which city is going to host the Olympics.

    I can't see what is possibly to gain from this format, other than the fact that they think with ten options available, no film will get much more than a 20% consensus, and Oscar is reluctant to award such a small percentage.

    Will they ever get things right?

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