The Oscars are being postponed for the fourth time in their history. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and the ABC Television Network said Monday that the 93rd Academy Awards will now be held April 25, 2021, eight weeks later than originally planned because of the pandemic's effects on the movie industry. The Academy's Board of Governors also decided to extend the eligibility window beyond the calendar year to Feb. 28, 2021, for feature films, the AP reports. Oscars nominations will be announced on March 15 and the nominees luncheon will be on April 15.
"Our hope, in extending the eligibility period and our Awards date, is to provide the flexibility filmmakers need to finish and release their films without being penalized for something beyond anyone’s control," said Academy President David Rubin and Academy CEO Dawn Hudson in a joint statement. Academy leadership has not yet addressed the format of the show and whether it will be virtual or in-person. The Oscars have been postponed before, but never this far in advance. The ceremony was pushed back a week because of disastrous flooding in Los Angeles in 1938. In 1968, it was delayed two days following the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. And in 1981, it was put off for 24 hours after President Ronald Reagan was shot in Washington, DC. (In April, the Academy introduced a 2020-only rule change.)