As first rumored back in May, the Academy Awards have officially been postponed for the first time in 40 years—and only the fourth time ever. The 2021 ceremony was supposed to happen on February 28, but due to the coronavirus and the way it has completely trashed this year’s movie release schedule, the Academy Of Motion Picture Arts And Sciences has decided to push it all the way back to April 25. On top of that, the eligibility window for the 2021 Oscars has been moved from December 31 to February 28, making this the first time since the ‘30s that it didn’t simply line up with a regular calendar year. (The other three postponements were in 1938 during a flood in Los Angeles, in 1968 after the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr., and in 1981 after Ronald Reagan was shot.)
In a statement (via The Wrap), The Academy explains that this new date will “provide the flexibility filmmakers need to finish and release their films without being penalized for something beyond anyone’s control,” which means this is good news for anyone who really had their heart set on a nomination for the 2021 Oscars and bad news for, say, Bloodshot, Bad Boys For Life, and Sonic The Hedgehog (as those were the default favorites for Best Picture before the Academy started changing the rules). Also, in related news that is slightly less important: This year’s Governors Awards—where a handful of honorary Oscar recipients are celebrated—will not be held, and the Academy’s Museum Of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles will delay its opening until April 30.
The Academy’s Technical Awards ceremony has also been postponed, though a new date has not been set, and there’s no word on if the 2021 Oscars will follow a traditional format. Hopefully there’s no need to even consider some kind of Zoom Oscars, because the coronavirus will be totally gone by then, right? Billy Crystal should probably download the app anyway, though.