The producers of this year’s Oscar telecast have been hardcore about making this year’s ceremony a “movie” instead of an awards show. In that vein, they have taken a drastic step in moving the performances of the Original Song nominees to the pre-show telecast. The Academy also revealed that the pre-show, titled “Oscars: Into the Spotlight,” will be hosted this year by Ariana DeBose from “Hamilton” and comedian/actor Lil Rel Howery.
In a statement from the Academy, Jesse Collins, Stacey Sher, and Steven Soderbergh noted, “We’ve come up with some serious pre-game and post-game action to enhance our main event. Our suggestion is just tune in for the whole shebang, otherwise, you’ll miss something really unexpected and fun.”
We’re not going to say it’s an insult to performers Celeste, H.E.R., Leslie Odom, Jr., Laura Pausini, Daniel Pemberton, Molly Sandén and Diane Warren that their songs are shown outside of the main telecast, but it’s pretty damn close. This is a surprising move from the Academy considering musical performances are often the most exciting and memorable part of the recent programs. More people likely remember Lady Gaga and Bradley singing “Shallow” at the 2019 Oscars than the fact “Green Book” won Best Picture. Even pre-taped, as some Grammy performances were last month, it would be a reason for many viewers to tune in.
Notably, “Húsavík” from “Eurovision Song Contest” will be shot on location in Húsavík, Iceland. The other four songs will be recorded at the Dolby Family Terrace of the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles. The museum is scheduled to open to the public this September.
It also appears the recent Jimmy Kimmel post-show specials have been scrapped for “Oscars: After Dark,” a new post-telecast show hosted by actors Colman Domingo and Andrew Rannells along with interviews from film critic Elvis Mitchell. I’m guessing most of the producers have not sat through many of Mr. Mitchell’s Q&As.
This year’s main telecast will be held primarily at Los Angeles’ Union Station and partially at the Dolby Theater in Hollywood.
The 93rd Oscars will be held on Sunday, April 25 and air live on Oscar Sunday, April 25, on ABC at 3:30 PM PT/6:30 PM PT (that’s the pre-show time).