Oscar nominees and their guests will qualify as essential workers to attend the upcoming Academy Awards amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. As per Variety, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced in a letter on Tuesday that those involved in the Oscars ceremony, which will include nominees and guests, will qualify for the essential work purpose waiver.
They will also be allowed to travel to and from the testing centre, rehearsals, and other Academy-organised activities during the lead up to the award show.
“Those involved in the Oscars production, like nominees and their guest, qualify for the essential work purpose waiver, and therefore are permitted to travel to and from the testing centre, rehearsals, and Academy-organized activities during the lead up to the Oscars production, including, of course, the award show,” the announcement letter read.
“The organizers of the Oscars are implementing a required quarantine to capture the risk of each person attending the event,” the letter continued.
Producers have maintained that the ceremony is being shot like a film so implementing essential worker status follows the protocol for movie and television shoots during the pandemic. The organisers also are implementing a required quarantine period for each person attending the event depending on risk assessment. Arrival dates for the Oscars are April 20 for domestic travellers and low-risk international travellers, and April 17 for high-risk international travellers.
“If you travel into Los Angeles County from outside of California, you need to self-quarantine for 10 days after you arrive and may not interact with anyone during those 10 days except the people in your household, i.e. people with whom you live,” the letter read.
The letter further stated, “If you travel into Los Angeles County solely for essential work purposes, you still need to self-quarantine (when not working) for 10 days and may not interact with people other than those necessary to conduct your essential work.”
All the nominees and guests must have a minimum of two COVID-19 PCR tests performed by the Academy’s vendor and a total of three tests in the week leading up to the ceremony. The letter also offered travel and testing examples. For instance, someone who flies in from London can arrive as late as April 20. It also included a chart for nominees and guests to best figure out their specific restrictions.
Apart from these guidelines, each nominee and their guests must present a travel and quarantine plan to the Academy for approval. Information is due no later than April 8, with revisions submitted by April 12. All information will be reviewed by the Oscars’ COVID consultant, Dr Erin Bromage. It will “remain private and be destroyed on or before May 10,” the letter read.
Produced by Jesse Collins, Stacey Sher and Steven Soderbergh, Oscars 2021 will primarily be held at Los Angeles’ historic Union Station, with additional events at the show’s traditional home, Dolby Theatre. The 93rd Oscars will be broadcast live on April 25 on ABC.