And the Oscar goes to...we may not find out.
While there have been several complaints over the years about how the Academy Awards telecast is just too darn long (on average clocking in at about three-hours-and-40 minutes), the Academy has rarely done anything to shorten its length. Now without a host (for the first time in decades — thanks Kevin Hart), the Academy is committed to keeping this year's telecast to three hours tops.
One additional way they've decided to do this is by eliminating several competitive award categories from the telecast, instead choosing to air them during commercial breaks. The four awards that will be handed out "off-air" will be Best Cinematography, Best Editing, Best Live Action Short, and Best Makeup & Hairstyling. Academy President John Bailey, himself a cinematographer, has experienced some backlash for this decision, with critics noting that it downplays the importance of the entire moviemaking process by choosing not to air those categories live on the telecast.
All hope is not lost, however. Bailey reassured Academy Award viewers that "with the help of our partners at ABC, we will stream these four award presentations online for our global fans to enjoy, live, along with our audience. Fans will be able to watch on Oscar.com and on the Academy’s social channels. The live stream is a first for our show, and will help further awareness and promotion of these award categories."
For an example of what we'll be missing on ABC when the ceremony airs, take a look at last year's moving speech by first-time winner Roger Deakins.
Will you be watching the Oscars this year? What do you think of the Academy's decision to not air certain categories? Let us know in the comments below.