(LOS ANGELES) — The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced today that it’s instituting new standards that will allow for more representation and inclusivity when considering films for Oscar nominations, including the esteemed Best Picture category.

In an effort to establish “equitable representation on and off screen,” according to a statement, Academy governors DeVon Franklin and Jim Gianopulos led a task force that designed the inclusivity standards, using the British Film Institute Diversity Standards as inspiration, in addition to consulting longtime partner the Producers Guild of America. 

The new Academy Inclusion Standards form requires that at least one lead or significant supporting actor must be from an underrepresented group — such as Asian, Hispanic, Black, Native American or Middle Eastern, among others — in order to be considered for a Best Picture nomination.
 
Another standard states that 30 percent of the ensemble cast must represent at least two underrepresented groups — including women, a racial or ethnic group, LGBTQ+ and those with disabilities — while an additional standard requires a film’s main plot line to be centered around one of these groups.

“The aperture must widen to reflect our diverse global population in both the creation of motion pictures and in the audiences who connect with them. The Academy is committed to playing a vital role in helping make this a reality,” says Academy President David Rubin and Academy CEO Dawn Hudson in a joint statement.  “We believe these inclusion standards will be a catalyst for long-lasting, essential change in our industry.”

Though submitting an Academy Inclusion Standards form is required for the 2022 and 2023 Oscar ceremonies for Best Picture consideration, these standards will not be required for eligibility for Best Picture until the 2024 Oscars.

By Cillea Houghton
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.