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Academy tightens Oscar campaign restrictions

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The party’s over…kind of. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences today announced new regulations regarding how movie studios and awards consultants may campaign for the Oscars. The biggest changes involve the types of events that filmmakers and actors may attend during the awards season. “Prior to the nominations announcement (January 24, 2012), there are no restrictions on screening events to which Academy members may be invited,” the Academy said in today’s announcement. “After the nominations have been announced, Academy members may continue be invited to screenings that have filmmaker participation elements but receptions are not permitted. While there is no restriction on the total number of screenings of a particular movie, no one individual from the film can participate in more than two panel discussions.”

In other words, gone are the days of the Social Network DVD release party where the movie’s cast just happens to show up, or the fancy lunch honoring Geoffrey Rush attended by all of the King’s Speech players. For studio executives and Oscar consultants, the new rules mean they will have to decide how best to utilize each director or cast member and make sure that each of their two allowed appearances achieve the most bang for the buck. Who will love the changes the most? The stars themselves — their calendars just got a lot less busy.