Following yet another disastrously low-rated Academy Awards, acclaimed filmmaker and screenwriter Paul Schrader offered his own morning-after analysis, declaring that “the Oscars mean less each year” due to the Academy’s financial challenges and “scramble to be woke.”
The First Reformed director laid out his case in a Facebook post on Monday.
“The Oscars mean less each year,” he wrote. “The reasons for this are clear: the need for revenue compounded by the debt carried by the museum and lowering film revenues and the scramble to be woke.”
— paul schrader’s facebook posts (@paul_posts) March 13, 2023
Schrader was referring to the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures that opened in 2021 in Los Angeles with a price tag of $482 million. Various reports estimate the Academy issued more than $300 million in bonds to help finance the massive project.
The Oscars has historically been one of the Academy’s biggest revenue streams. But plummeting ratings mean commercials aren’t selling for what they used to. This year, Disney, which owns ABC, lowered the price for Oscar-night commercials in a concession to falling public interest and continued economic turmoil that has hit consumers hard.
In his Facebook post, Schrader called out the Academy’s diversity efforts that have resulted in more international voters.
“These changes have transformed the Hollywood Oscars into the International Oscars,” he wrote, adding that he prefers the old-fashioned Oscars that focused on industry movies. “If the Oscars are to save themselves, they must return to their origins.”
But that remains highly. unlikely. Starting this year, the Academy’s new woke diversity requirements are set to take effect for the best picture category. Movies must meet a complex set of gender and racial quotas if they want to be considered for the top prize for the 96th annual Academy Awards.
As Breitbart News reported, early figures show this year’s Oscars, which were hosted by the far-left Jimmy Kimmel, attracted just 16 million viewers, down from 16.6 million last year, which was already considered bad. As recently as ten years ago, the Oscars pulled in 40.3 million viewers for the 2013 ceremony.
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