The Oscars is a major celebrity event of the movie world and the Coronavirus pandemic has affected it. This disease is highly contagious and it is mandatory for people to avoid any sort of physical contact with unknown persons. A simple gesture like a handshake is taboo and words like “social distancing” and “avoid large gatherings” are being drilled into our heads. Face masks that used to be a part of the New Year’s Eve celebrations have become a part of the standard dress code of today.

The result is empty movie halls and delays in the release of big-budget films.

This disease has throttled the industry and organizers of Oscars 2021 have shifted the date of next year's ceremony back by two months. Instead of February 28 next year, the revised date is April 25. The coronavirus had a cascading effect on Travel, tourism, sports, and outdoor activities. Many people began to work from home and there was a feeling of helplessness all around.

The BBC says the organizers have also agreed to extend the eligibility window beyond December 31, 2020, to the end of February. The intention is to provide some sort of incentive to films that faced production holdups due to the pandemic.

The sudden appearance of this disease had led to a stoppage of films that were on the anvil for release by the year-end.

There are a few modifications in the Oscars

One modification is about providing a “level the playing field." The Academy hopes to achieve this in order to ensure greater involvement in its future award ceremonies.

It wants to increase participation by having 10 films in the best film category.

BBC goes on to add that right now, the number fluctuates between five and 10. By enhancing it to 10 would mean having a more diverse choice of films to choose from. Of course, implementation of this can happen only in 2022. Incidentally, the delay in this prestigious event is not new.

There are three past instances. The first was in 1938 due to flooding in Los Angeles. Next was in 1968 following the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr in 1968 and the third time in 1981 after the attempted assassination of President Ronald Reagan.

The Oscars to ring in some changes

David Rubin is the president of the Academy and Dawn Hudson its CEO. In their opinion, Movies have always played an important role in influencing lives. BBC says the movie is a medium that has inspired and entertained people for years. They also said that Oscars 2021 coupled with the opening of the new museum will be a historic moment.

It will help movie fans all over the world to unite through cinema. A new aspect is a rule regarding films that debut on outlets other than movie halls. At present, the eligibility criterion is that films are eligible for consideration provided they have run in a Los Angeles cinema for at least a week. However, this year, eligibility would cover releases on streaming or video-on-demand services. This will be a "temporary" exception.

Coronavirus postpones the Oscars

According to ABC AU, the annual Oscars awards ceremony is postponed for the fourth time in history because of the outbreak of coronavirus. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced this and indicated fresh dates. The Academy also extended the deadline for the release of movies.

This is usually December 31, 2020, but this year it will be February 28, 2021. This will allow moviemakers to complete their movies that might have been delayed due to the pandemic. It had shut down movie theatres worldwide in mid-March and the production of films suffered. In fact, the release of many movies of 2020 will now release in 2021.

In February 2020, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle declined the invitation to attend the Oscars. It is not known whether they might reconsider this decision. In February 2019, the Academy removed four Oscars from a live broadcast. The reason was to accommodate the program within the allotted time frame.