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U.S. DOJ warns Academy over potential rule changes that threaten Oscars eligibility for streaming services like Apple TV+, Netflix

Wednesday April 3, 2019. 11:08 PM , from Mac Daily News
“The Justice Department has warned the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences that its potential rule changes limiting the eligibility of Netflix and other streaming services for the Oscars could raise antitrust concerns and violate competition law,” Ted Johnson reports for Variety.
“The letter came in response to reports that Steven Spielberg, an Academy board member, was planning to push for rules changes to Oscars eligibility, restricting movies that debut on Netflix and other streaming services around the same time that they show in theaters,” Johnson reports. “According to a letter obtained by Variety, the chief of the DOJ’s Antitrust Division, Makan Delrahim, wrote to AMPAS CEO Dawn Hudson on March 21 to express concerns that new rules would be written ‘in a way that tends to suppress competition.'”
“Spielberg’s concerns over the eligibility of movies on streaming platforms have triggered intense debate in the industry,” Johnson reports. “Spielberg told ITV News last year that Netflix and other streaming platforms have boosted the quality of television, but ‘once you commit to a television format, you’re a TV movie. … If it’s a good show [it] deserve[s] an Emmy, but not an Oscar.'”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: We agree totally with Spielberg that films debuting on streaming services should be eligible for Emmys, not Oscars. Films that are first shown in theaters to comply with Academy rules which later are shown on streaming services should, of course, be eligible for Oscars.
As per that sentiment:
“Dame Helen Mirren, who won a Best Actress Oscar for portraying Queen Elizabeth II in the 2006 film, used decidedly unladylike language to wade into the Hollywood debate about whether original movies from streaming services should be eligible for Academy Awards,” Nicole Lyn Pesce reports for MarketWatch. “‘I love Netflix, but f— Netflix,’ Mirren, 73, said at CinemaCon on Tuesday night. Variety reported that those attending the convention of movie exhibitors (including film distributors and theater owners invested in people catch flicks off of their couches) met her remarks with ‘thunderous applause.'”
Pesce reports, “The actress, who was promoting her new film The Good Liar at the Warner Bros presentation, added, ‘There’s nothing like sitting in the cinema and the lights go down. I would like to thank you guys for making that environment possible.'”
Read more in the full article here.
Netflix’s wall of secrecy erodes – March 15, 2019
Apple to pursue Oscars and Emmys for new video service – March 15, 2019
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