You can tell it’s getting closer to Oscar time because the eligibility lists are coming out. In one fell swoop, the Academy has revealed the films eligible for Animated Feature, International Feature, and Documentary Feature. Let’s take the lists one at a time.
First, Animated Feature. It’s the category I often feel the most educated about. The big glaring omission here is The Wolf House. That film has been dominating the precursors and for it to miss out here, either due to a technicality or some other questionable decision making, utterly changes the calculus for this category. While I thought The Croods: A New Age had an outside chance to earn a nomination this year, it now moves solidly into fifth position alongside Wolfwalkers, Pixar’s Onward and Soul, and Over the Moon.
On the documentary side, it’s a lengthy list of 238 films, which makes it difficult to parse, but I believe all of this year’s prime competitors is on the list. That said, the real test of fitness will be what the shortlist looks like.
For International Feature, submissions are often very well known by the time this list is released, so I can’t say there’s much surprising here. The shortlist will, of course, be far more interesting.
Anyway, for now, let’s just revel in the list and start working on our revised predictions!
ANIMATED, DOCUMENTARY AND INTERNATIONAL FEATURE FILMS ELIGIBLE FOR 93RD OSCARS® ANNOUNCED
LOS ANGELES, CA – The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences today announced feature films eligible for consideration in the Animated Feature Film, Documentary Feature and International Feature Film categories for the 93rd Academy Awards®. Eligibility lists by category can be viewed at Oscars.org/93rdFeatureEligibility. Complete 93rd Academy Awards rules can be found at Oscars.org/rules.
ANIMATED FEATURE FILM
Twenty-seven features are eligible for consideration in the Animated Feature Film category for the 93rd Academy Awards. Some of the films have not yet had their required qualifying release and must fulfill that requirement and comply with all the category’s other qualifying rules to advance in the voting process.
To determine the five nominees, members of the Short Films and Feature Animation Branch are automatically eligible to vote in the category. Academy members outside of the Short Films and Feature Animation Branch are invited to opt in to participate and must meet a minimum viewing requirement to be eligible to vote in the category. Films submitted in the Animated Feature Film category also qualify for Academy Awards in other categories, including Best Picture.
Two hundred thirty-eight features are eligible for consideration in the Documentary Feature category for the 93rd Academy Awards. Some of the films have not yet had their required qualifying release and must fulfill that requirement and comply with all the category’s other qualifying rules to advance in the voting process.
Documentary features that have won a qualifying award or have been programmed at qualifying film festivals or have been submitted in the International Feature Film category as their country’s official selection are also eligible in the category. Films submitted in the Documentary Feature category may also qualify for Academy Awards in other categories, including Best Picture. Members of the Documentary Branch vote to determine the shortlist and the nominees. A shortlist of 15 films will be announced on Tuesday, February 9, 2021.
INTERNATIONAL FEATURE FILM
Ninety-three countries have submitted films that are eligible for consideration in the International Feature Film category for the 93rd Academy Awards. An international feature film is defined as a feature-length motion picture (more than 40 minutes) produced outside the United States with a predominantly (more than 50%) non-English dialogue track. Lesotho, Sudan and Suriname are first-time entrants.
Earlier this year, the Academy’s Board of Governors voted to expand the shortlist from 10 to 15 films. Academy members from all branches are invited to participate in the preliminary round of voting and must meet a minimum viewing requirement to be eligible to vote in the category. The shortlist of 15 films will be announced on Tuesday, February 9, 2021.
All dates and rules for the 93rd Academy Awards are subject to change based on national guidelines, state-mandated government orders and Academy-determined best practices.
Nominations for the 93rd Academy Awards will be announced on Monday, March 15, 2021.
The 93rd Oscars® will be held on Sunday, April 25, 2021, and will be televised live on ABC and in more than 225 countries and territories worldwide.