Oscars' New "Popular Film" Category Won't Be Part Of This Year's Academy Awards After All

There's no confirmation on when the category will be reintroduced.

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While Mark Wahlberg may love the idea of a "Popular Film" category at the Oscars, it won't come during the upcoming ceremony as previously announced. According to CBS News, The Academy confirmed that the "Outstanding Achievement in Popular Film" category has been axed from this year's Oscars ceremony due to concerns about implementing it so late into the year.

As written in a statement regarding why the category has been cut, The Academy said, "While remaining committed to celebrating a wide spectrum of movies ... the Academy recognized that implementing any new award nine months into the year creates challenges for films that have already been released."

John Bailey, who's been elected for his fourth term as President of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, said that the Board of Governors recently met to discuss the change at length and approve the dismissal of the category.

The "Popular Film" category, which was announced last month, isn't the only change headed to the Oscars. In addition to the introduction--and subsequently dismissal--of the award, a shorter awards season and a shorter telecast were also tossed around in the idea bag. Bailey also said that the Academy promises a three-hour Oscars ceremony next year and an earlier air date in 2020.

The changes are reportedly being made in the wake of declining viewership. The 2018 Awards ceremony saw the viewership lowest in history, with only 26.5 million people tuning in. That's almost a 20 percent decline from the 32.9 million who tuned in to 2017's show. We'll see if any of these changes will positively affect the Academy's viewership.

This year's Oscars ceremony will be held on February 24, 2019.

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