Spielberg to Voice Concerns Over Netflix Oscar Competition at Academy Meeting

Steven Spielberg Netflix Oscars

Steven Spielberg Netflix Oscars

According to IndieWire, Spielberg is mounting a serious campaign to change the Academy rules about what qualifies as an Oscar-worthy film, and those changes would be centered around the theatrical run of movies up for major awards.

According to Indie Wire Spielberg, who now serves as the Academy Governor representing the directors branch, will argue in support of a rule change that could prevent Netflix from seeking Oscar glory in the future at this year's upcoming Academy Board of Governors meeting.

"Steven feels strongly about the difference between the streaming and theatrical situation", the Amblin Entertainment rep said, according to Indiewire. "He'll be happy if others will join [his campaign] when that comes up [at the Academy Board of Governors meeting]. He will see what happens", the spokesperson added.

The legendary director has spoken out in the past about his belief that Netflix films should only be eligible for Emmys rather than Oscars.

The debate of the disruption that streaming platforms have caused in the traditional film distribution model has been ongoing ever since Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu entered the film space, but it's particularly resonant in a year where Netflix reportedly spent around $40 to $60 million on a successful Oscar campaign for Roma, which nabbed 10 Oscar nominations and three wins (Netflix purchased the distribution rights to the film after it had been made). Representatives for Spielberg had no comment when reached by EW on Friday, and spokespeople for the Academy and Netflix did not immediately return EW's requests for comment.

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In an interview that Spielberg did a year ago, he said that he doesn't think the streaming services are playing fair.

"This is a Board of Governors meeting".

Ava DuVernay earned her first Oscar nomination in 2017 for her Netflix documentary 13th. "There's a growing sense that if [Netflix] is going to behave like a studio, there should be some sort of standard", said one Academy governor. "We need a little clarity". And regular branch members can't be there. But I hope if this is true, that you'll have filmmakers in the room or read statements from directors like me who feel differently'.

"You certainly, if it's a good show, deserve an Emmy". If the rules are changed to make it more difficult for Netflix films to qualify, they'd also be making it harder on smaller indie films who don't have the power of Netflix money behind them.

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