KEY POINTS

  • Oscars 2021 attendees are not required to wear face masks during the show
  • They will only be asked to wear them during commercial breaks
  • The red carpet will only have three photographers and a limited number of press people

Despite the COVID pandemic, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has decided not to require attendees of the upcoming Oscars 2021 to wear face masks during the show. 

In an exclusive report, Variety learned directly from Academy sources Monday that Oscar attendees will not be obliged to don their masks during the live ceremony at Union Station in downtown Los Angeles on Sunday.   

The anonymous sources explained that what this means is that the guests won’t have to put on their masks when the cameras are rolling. They would instead be asked to wear them during commercial breaks or when the cameras are not on them.

The move is a bit controversial since it does not follow what the 63rd Grammys did on March 14. As the first major awards ceremony to be held in-person amid the pandemic, attendees were required to wear masks throughout the program, and winners were only asked to remove them during their acceptance speech.

The Academy’s reasoning for this bold decision has to do with the way it regards the live ceremony as something similar to a movie in which presenters are considered cast members. Based on the COVID-19 guidelines in place, face masks are not required for people on camera, and they are doing just that, as per The Hollywood Reporter

The motion picture organization has also come up with a solution to limit contact between attendees during the ceremony. Aside from limiting the audience capacity to 170, the guests will also be rotated in and out of the venue. 

The ceremony will be held in the main showroom. However, the organizers have also prepared two adjacent courtyards where two-thirds of the guests will be asked to stay at any given time. Nominees are provided with a personalized itinerary, so they will know when they will be rotated in and out of the main venue. 

Just like in the previous ceremonies, the 93rd Academy Awards will have a red carpet. However, only three photographers are allowed this time due to the public health crisis. The press members allowed to conduct interviews are being regulated as well, and all of them are expected to practice social distancing when doing interviews. 

The 93rd annual Academy Awards will air Sunday at 8 p.m. EDT on ABC. 

Parasite Wins Oscars Parasite, a South Korean thriller-comedy film directed by critically acclaimed director Bong Joon-ho, made history during the 92nd Oscars after winning four Academy Awards. The South Korean film was also the first non-English language film ever to win the Best Picture award. Photo: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images