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Film Academy "considers postponing Oscars" due to coronavirus

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The 93rd Academy Awards could be postponed due to coronavirus, according to reports.

The biggest night in the film calendar isn’t set to take place until February 28 2021, but multiple sources tell Variety that the plans are far from certain at this point.

“It’s likely they’ll be postponed,” one source told the publication.

However, the same source said that a new date is yet to be finalised, while another said the date of the telecast is currently unchanged at ABC.

It comes after the pandemic ushered in a whole host of temporary rule changes for Oscars eligibility.

Parasite Oscars 2020
‘Parasite’ was the big winner at this year’s Oscars. CREDIT: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images

For the first time ever, the Academy Awards will permit films that debuted on a streaming service without a cinema run to quality for nominations.

It marks the first time that streaming films have been eligible to run, but the change will only apply to films released in 2020.

Under past rules, a film was required to secure a theatrical run of at least seen days in a Los Angeles commercial cinema in order to qualify for the Best Picture award.

But if cinemas re-open this summer, then the Academy will expand the qualifying cinemas beyond LA to include screens in New York City, Chicago, San Francisco, Miami and Atlanta.

If the postponement takes place, it is unclear if the Academy will allow films released after the year-end deadline to qualify for the 2021 Oscars.

Some of 2020’s biggest cinematic releases have already been forced to push back their release dates – including Daniel Craig’s final outing as James Bond in No Time To Die and Marvel’s Black Widow.

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