The Hollywood Reporter posted a story today about some Academy members complaining that the voting period is too short. They are running out of time to see the big late year releases.
Voting began January 5th and ends January 13th. The HR article reports that they actually have more time this year, because of a later end date. Last year ballots were due on December 30th.
Here are what a few of the voters are saying:
“It’s been overwhelming, I have to tell you,” adds Rabbi Marvin Hier, a two-time Oscar winner who is a member of the documentary branch. “There was an overwhelming amount of good films this year, and it’s been almost physically impossible to watch all of the ones that are in the running. Maybe part of the problem is that we’ve all been so distracted by the 24/7 coverage of the presidential election, but even with that I was busy doing my best to turn off the television and fulfill my obligations.”
Carol Connors, a twice Oscar-nominated member of the music branch (she co-wrote the Rocky theme song), concurs. “I think there’s an unusual intensity this year, maybe because the animated and documentary and foreign and short movies are really coming into their own. Because of the mainstreaming of them, one really has to navigate a lot of films, and I’m just dancing as fast as I can, seeing as many films as I can and just doing the best I can, and hopefully giving the films a fair shot, because they deserve it.”
Harvey Weinstein, co-chief of The Weinstein Co. (the distributor of The Founder and Lion) and a member of the executive branch, agrees — and has a suggestion for how to repair it right now. “There are so many great films to see this year but, for the first time, I can honestly tell you that I haven’t had time with my schedule to see everything,” he says. “I love Annette Bening, but I haven’t seen 20th Century Women. I’m going to do my damnedest to watch everything, but it’s tough, and it would be such a shame for great films to be overlooked. I’m concerned about Michael Keaton’s brilliant performance in The Founder, which should not be missed, but somehow many people are overwhelmed and haven’t had time to see it yet. The same might be true of other end-of-the-year releases like Fences, Hidden Figures and even, dare I say, Martin Scorsese’s Silence. Why not give us MLK weekend and extend the deadline from Friday to Tuesday? This might be a little more work for the Academy but, believe me, I’m sure the studios and independents will split the overtime cost, if there is any.”