After a year that’s seen the Hollywood Awards Machine struggle desperately to portray its participants as Glittering Gods, even as our collective desire to be Sweatpants Trolls has swept through film and television elites, one group has seemed most bullheadedly dedicated to keeping up the lie: The Academy Of Motion Picture Arts And Sciences. Earlier this month, we reported on the Oscar-granting body’s efforts to keep up so-called “standards” by requiring attendees to this year’s show to show up in person, dress like fancy people, and talk about themselves in terms beyond their latest ideas for which snack chips to dip into what flavor goo to stave off existential ennui. Now, though, the Oscars producers—including director Steven Soderbergh—have relented on at least one of the realities of COVID-world, acknowledging that international attendees might not necessarily want to load themselves into metal tubes filled with aspirated spit in order to fly to Los Angeles to pick up a statue.
This is per Variety, which reports that, while plans for the big event—scheduled for April 25—are still being kept fairly quiet, there will be at least one event space in London where nominees can gather in order to participate in this year’s Oscar’s. And while other venues are reportedly being pursued in other European countries, the basic thrust is still the same: We’re doing this thing in person, dammit, for whatever definition of “in person” we can swing. So, for instance, all musical performances will reportedly be done live in L.A., all participants are expected to test themselves with Academy-provided kits and bubble-up ahead of showing up at the event, and—possibly—they might even try to rig a system where the nominees in question are rotated into the theater proper when it’s their turn to have their categories announced. All of which sounds a lot harder than just letting Jason Sudeikis wear his damn sweatshirt, but, hey, to each incarnation of entertainment industry snobbery their own, we guess.