Steven Soderbergh on why Oscars show order was changed: ‘Goal was to really do something different’

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Oscars producer Steven Soderbergh does not regret his decision to switch the awards order at the ceremony, a decision that has attracted a lot of criticism.

The ceremony usually ends with the announcement of best picture winner but this year, it ended with best actor winner announcement, which went to Anthony Hopkins.

With the 83-year-old actor not in attendance and the producers not allowing Zoom acceptance speeches, many felt that the switch did not come off well for the pandemic era Oscars.

Soderbergh, however, is not too concerned. “So the goal was to really do something different and let the academy sift through the response and decide what they would do going forward,” Soderbergh told the Los Angeles Times in an interview.

The director had not allowed zoom acceptance speeches into the ceremony, which ended on a down note with the best actor winner Anthony Hopkins not there to accept his trophy in person.

Hopkins win for The Father had come as a surprise to many as fans were expecting a posthumous win for late Chadwick Boseman for Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.

When asked by the Times that, in hindsight, he would rethink the decision to prohibit attendance via Zoom. Soderbergh said, “No.”

Also read: Andrew Garfield on rumours of him returning as Spider-Man in No Way Home: ‘I ain’t got a call’

The director, however, said the decision to not end the show with the standard best picture award was out of a respectful conscience. “We thought it might be fun to mix it up, especially if people didn’t know that was coming,” Soderbergh said.

“So that was always part of the plan. And then when the nominations came out and there was even the possibility that Chadwick could win posthumously, our feeling was if he were to win and his widow were to speak on his behalf, there would be nowhere to go after that. So we stuck with it.”

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