Fans have struggled to adjust to the 2021 Oscars. Any rep, host, or nominee on camera is not required to wear a mask, as reported by Variety. Hollywood’s elite are spaced out at separate tables, but some still hug each other when awards are announced. Ready for a particularly interesting difference? Award winners are not being cut off when their speeches run too long. Instead, Academy staffers are allowing them to take their time, via Reuters.
While ABC News pointed out that Oscars’ speeches have already been getting longer and longer as the years go on, the choice to give award winners 90 seconds of speech time is novel. The decision came from three new Academy producers: Director Steven Soderbergh, film producer Stacey Sher, and actor Jesse Collins, per Reuters. As explained by The Associated Press, Soderbergh argued that 90-second speeches, instead of 45-second speeches, would give winners the chance to better tell their stories and connect with viewers at home.
Many viewers do not like the longer speeches and other 2021 Oscar changes
Unfortunately, many viewers have disagreed with the Academy producers’ decision to give award winners longer speeches. “Ratings for #Oscars will be horrendous,” media reporter Sara Fischer tweeted. “Not just b/c pandemic, cord-cutting, but b/c show is undeniably slow. Speeches are heartfelt, but too long.” In addition, after Daniel Kaluuya won Best Actor in a Supporting Role, one user replied to an Entertainment Weekly tweet, “Solid performance, but acceptance speech was a tad too long.” Another user wrote, “Most boring I entertaining Oscar show ever! Let’s blame it on the Pandemic and pray they bring a host back next year.”
Though most Twitter commentary has been negative, there are a few positive viewers chiming in to show their support. “It’s really cool,” one user tweeted. “It looks like the early days of the awards before it became the giant ceremony it usually is now. Intimate and not so fussy and overproduced.” Unfortunately, many viewers and media outlets don’t share this sentiment, and still believe that the Oscars ratings will be “abysmal,” as the Los Angeles Times said. Most fans are simply looking forward to next year’s award ceremony instead.
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