Oscars To Allow Film Commercials

   Oct. 9, 2008 -- The Oscars organization voted to allow movie commercials appear in the telecast, which ends a decades-old ban and no doubt will help ABC Television ad sales for the Feb. 22 event.
   The board of Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciencies voted earlier this week to lift the ban, it was learned Thursday.
   “Under the new rules, a studio will be allowed to buy only one 30- or 60-second spot in the show,” a Los Angeles Times article notes. “However, a media company with multiple distribution arms could buy a commercial for each label.”
   “Ads for movies that are in contention for an award would not be permitted in the show,” Meg James and Claudia Eller wrote in the Times article. “ABC will determine where the spots are to run.”
   Marketing to Moviegoers: Second Edition notes live events are prized by advertisers, because viewers tend not to watch later via Web streaming of DVR recorders. A 30-second ad carries an estimated $1.6 million price tag.
   The audience is tilted to women, who are attracted to the glamor. Viewing is high, though falls a bit if mainstream films are not among the contenders for Best Picture.
   Movie commercials were originallly prohibited because AMPAS didn’t want to seem to be endorsing films that advertise. In any case, films in competition for Oscars – while nominally are still banned from advertising -- have already completed most, if not all, of their theatrical runs by the February awards telecast. Video release would not warrant such pricey commercials.

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