It was only two years ago that the Oscars expanded the number of Best Picture nominations from five to 10, a change that will now undergo another alteration. The Academy of Motion PIctures Arts and Sciences has decided to implement a new system in which there can be as few as five and as many as 10 nominees for Best Picture–with the possibility of any number in between.
In a statement, Academy President Tom Sherak explained the decision, referring to a study by PricewaterhouseCoopers. “In studying the data, what stood out was that Academy members had regularly shown a strong admiration for more than five movies,” Sherak said. “A Best Picture nomination should be an indication of extraordinary merit. If there are only eight pictures that truly earn that honor in a given year, we shouldn’t feel an obligation to round out the number.”
According to Sherak, the recommendation came from Academy Executive Director Bruce Davis.
The 84th Academy Awards nominations are set to be revealed Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2012, at 5:30 a.m. PT in the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater.