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Why veto Netflix of the Oscars could weaken the Academy

how to see the oscar awards

It is not difficult to understand why the streaming industry continues to flourish. Not only does it save us time and money by being able to access a large number of series and movies without having to go to the local DVD rental store (or VHS in older times), but also much of its own content has managed to be of such good quality, that traditional television networks and studios have begun to lose a good part of the market.

The nomination of the film Roma by Mexican Alfonso Cuarn in 10 categories of the Oscar awards raged the hornet in Hollywood. Many industry veterans such as Steven Spielberg questioned the nominations received with the sole argument that these are productions that have not gone through the big screen at its premiere.

In March, it was learned that Spielberg planned to propose a change in the rules of the Academy during a meeting of the Board of Directors of the organization that will take place on April 23. Nearby sources indicated that some members were going to propose changes and that Spielberg intended to propose a rule that prohibited the nomination of films that were released by streaming services and not in cinemas. The controversy has been such that even the United States Department of Justice has analyzed the matter, and has concluded that such a ban violates anti-monopoly laws.

Oscar awards have always generated controversy. Rare is the year in which there have been none, either by the winners of the prizes themselves or by the speeches of the winners. In the midst of everything, the Academy has managed to maintain its reputation throughout the years. However, a prohibition of this magnitude in such changing times could be very damaging to the reputation of the organization.

It is understood that the experience of watching a movie in a theater is very different from watching it at home. The visual effects can be better appreciated, the audio is much more immersive and in general, the experience is much more immersive. However, what Netflix and other streaming services have done is democratize access to entertainment and on those lines, Netflix has counterattacked Spielberg in a tweet, not to mention his name, in which they indicate that his service has facilitated access to the films to those people who live in inhospitable places where there are no theaters, has facilitated access to premieres regardless of geographical location and has given filmmakers a greater facility to share their art.

For many people, the opinion of the Academy is important and therefore the award continues to be important. What interests viewers is to know if a movie is good or not, not categorize if it was released in theaters or through a streaming service.

This initiative of the Academy are drowning kicks of an industry that is each layer. It is a way of protecting the film industry, on which studies depend largely. Fewer and fewer people go to movie theaters, partly because the entrance is expensive for many. In the United States, an entry costs $ 12 dollars on Regal or AMC chains. In independent cinemas it may be cheaper, but it still does not compare to what you can get with Netflix by paying only $ 9.99 per month. To solve this crisis, services such as MoviePass have been created, called the Netflix of movie theaters but it has been difficult to find a good profitable business model. AMC sought to create a competition for MoviePass, exclusive to its movie theaters, but continues to be somewhat expensive for the general public.

If only the productions of the great studios released in theaters can be nominated for the Oscars, the Academy will lose its credibility. A movie is a movie, no matter where it was its debut, and going through the big screen is something that should not be indispensable in order to have the opportunity to win a statuette. Today Netflix may be the one affected, but tomorrow may be an independent filmmaker who can lose this chance to shine.

The views expressed here belong to the author and do not reflect the beliefs of Digital Trends.

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