This past year, award shows have struggled to stay relevant at a time where physical gatherings are something we, including celebrities, have to avoid. While nominations still generate buzz and excitement, award-giving bodies have been looking for ways to make the shows themselves work and remain as entertaining as they were pre-Covid.
However, the Academy Awards have plans in place that will creatively restructure the Oscars next week to make the most out of the limitations they face.
According to the award show’s trio of new producers — Steven Soderbergh, Stacey Sher, and Jesse Collins — the Oscars will have a different feel this time around. This year, the awards show will have a stronger narrative feel to it and will be shot like a movie.
“It’s not going to be like anything that’s been done before,” Soderbergh said. “We want the show to have a voice.”
A part of achieving this new tone that they’re going for also seems to be how they’re going to approach the acceptance speeches of the night’s winners. While the speeches have usually been limited to around 45 seconds, it seems like that will change this time around. “We’re giving them space. We’ve encouraged them to tell a story and to say something personal,” Soderbergh said.
When asked about masks at the ceremony, he gave what he called a “deliberately cryptic” response. “Masks are going to play a very important role in the story. That topic is very central to the narrative.”
There will also be a pre-show, featuring pre-recorded performances of the Best Original Song nominees to kick off the event.
Unlike other awards shows, like the Emmys or the Golden Globes, the Oscars will have no Zoom appearances. Those who can’t make it to Los Angeles will attend the event via satellite hookups in alternate venues around the world.
The 2021 Oscars will take place on April 25 (April 26 in the Philippines).