The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced Friday it is conducting a review of its Oscar-campaigning policies in light of the growing influence of social media.
The review follows the surprise best-actress nomination this week for Andrea Riseborough, who appeared in the little-viewed independent film “To Leslie.” Riseborough was heavily promoted on social media during nominations season by a variety of Hollywood A-listers, some of whom even hosted screenings of the film.
Among those touting the film were stars such as Jennifer Aniston, Kate Winslet, Edward Norton and Gwyneth Paltrow, according to various Hollywood trade reports.
“It is the Academy’s goal to ensure that the Awards competition is conducted in a fair and ethical manner, and we are committed to ensuring an inclusive awards process,” according to a statement released Friday by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. “We are conducting a review of the campaign procedures around this year’s nominees, to ensure that no guidelines were violated and to inform us whether changes to the guidelines may be needed in a new era of social media and digital communication.
“We have confidence in the integrity of our nomination and voting procedures, and support genuine grassroots campaigns for outstanding performances.”
Oscar campaigning is nothing new. Film studios often spend large amounts of money promoting movies and performers in hopes of getting attention on the Oscar stage.
But Riseborough’s nomination raised eyebrows. She had not gained any momentum in pre-Oscar nominations, including the prestigious Screen Actors Guild and Critics Choice awards. She did receive a nomination for a Spirit Award, which honors independent films and performances.