Three hundred eleven feature films will compete for the Academy Award for Best Picture of 2005, it has been announced by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
Marking a 16.5% increase from 2004, the 2005 total of eligible features marks the first time in 32 years that as many as 300 motion pictures have contended for the Best Picture award.
Academy Credits Coordinator Howard Loberfeld attributed the sharp jump partly to an increase in the number of feature-length documentaries playing theatrically (35 versus 15 in 2004), and partly to some distributor reorganizations which led to the release of an unusual number of long-delayed projects.
Nomination ballots and the Reminder List of Eligible Releases Ã¢â‚¬â€œ the list of 2005 motion pictures eligible for Oscar consideration Ã¢â‚¬â€œ will be mailed tomorrow (December 29) to voting members of the Academy.
According to Academy rules, to qualify for consideration a feature-length motion picture must have a running time of more than 40 minutes and have been exhibited theatrically on 35mm or 70mm film, or a qualifying digital format. A film must open in a commercial theater, for paid admission, in Los Angeles County between January 1, 2005, and midnight December 31, 2005, and run for seven consecutive days. Films that receive their first public exhibition or distribution in any manner other than as a theatrical motion picture release are not eligible for Academy Awards in any category. Official screen credits and copies of the main and end title credits must have been submitted to the Academy by December 1, 2005.
Entries in the Foreign Language, Animated Feature, Documentary and Short Film categories are subject to special rules and are viewed and selected by voting panels of Academy members. The entry deadlines in all of these categories have already passed.
Nominations for the 78th Academy Awards will be announced on Tuesday, January 31, 2006, at 5:30 a.m. PST, in the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater.
Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements for 2005 will be presented on March 5, 2006, at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland, and televised live by the ABC Television Network beginning at 5 p.m. PST.