The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced Wednesday that it is limiting this year’s growth in membership to roughly half that of recent years.
The change for the 2021 membership review process was made to “ensure the necessary infrastructure, staff resources and environment to support all Academy members,” according to a statement released Wednesday afternoon.
Ahead of the change, the Academy’s Board of Governors voted on branch-specific guidelines to be applied in determining this year’s new membership invitees. Oscar winners and nominees will be considered without limitation by applicable branches.
“As we look to the future growth and goals of the Academy, we need to scale appropriately so we can continue to give the personal service our members have come to expect and appreciate,” said Academy CEO Dawn Hudson. “We remain focused on cultivating a membership body that reflects our diverse film community and the world around us.”
In the wake of criticism of its membership makeup, The Academy said it has expanded its class size over the last several years, exceeding its goal to double the number of women and underrepresented ethnic/racial communities by 2020.
“Membership selection decisions will continue to be based on professional qualifications, with representation, inclusion and equity remaining a priority,” the statement says. “The Academy is committed to advancing its Aperture 2025 initiative, furthering goals to increase equity and inclusion in the stories told through film, elevate different voices within Academy leadership, and provide opportunities to amplify these voices across multiple sectors in the industry.”
In addition to recognizing excellence in filmmaking through the Oscars, the Academy supports a range of initiatives to promote the art and science of the movies, including public programming, educational outreach and the upcoming Academy Museum of Motion Pictures.