To stop the #OscarsSoWhite campaign from continuing, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has created new eligibility rules, including diversity standards to enter for Best Picture.
In 2024, Best Picture nominees must meet at least two out of four standards. The first standard is on- screen representation, themes and narratives. The second standard is creative leadership and project team. The third standard is industry access and opportunities. The fourth standard is audience development.
These four new standards for Best Picture were developed to display the Academy’s commitment to include as many minority figures to be nominated for an Oscar. It is a new initiative looking at structural changes in the film industry. They call it Academy Aperture 2025.
“The aperture must widen to reflect our diverse global population in both the creation of motion pictures and in the audiences who connect with them,” said David Rubin, president and Dawn Hudson, CEO. “We believe these inclusion standards will be a catalyst for long-lasting, essential change in our industry.”
Even though these standards will not go into effect until 2024, the news has not had the most positive reaction. Some are delighted to see them making the change. However, many see a threat toward their art.
“When people come up with films, it’s about the story,” said Jirka Belcar, sophomore and film major. “It’s about the director entertaining the audience. If directors are forced to change their stories based on these guidelines, the outcome won’t be as powerful. I think the academy needs to switch back the focus on awarding the best film that comes out that specific year, otherwise it becomes a propaganda contest.”
With these new changes, the film industry will enter a new diverse era.