With all the attention drawn to Nicolas Chartier’s email to friends asking them to vote for his war movie The Hurt Locker over the “$500 million film,” it’s little wonder that the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences has denied the producer entry to the show. The Academy ruled late last night that Chartier’s email violated the Academy’s strict campaigning rules. As a result, he will not be allowed admittance to the show this Sunday.
The Academy took greatest issue with Chartier disparaging Avatar with his flippant “$500 million” comment. According to the press release, “Academy rules prohibit casting a negative or derogatory light on a competing film.” The executive committee stopped short of rescinding Chartier’s nomination. If The Hurt Locker wins Best Picture, the French producer will still receive his Oscar following the ceremonies.
Chartier apologized for his e-mail in a statement last week: “My naivete, ignorance of the rules and plain stupidity as a first-time nominee is not an excuse for this behavior, and I strongly regret it.” Nonetheless, should Hurt Locker win on Sunday night, only screenwriter Mark Boal, director Kathryn Bigelow, and producer Greg Shapiro will be onstage to collect their award.