By David Poland

Academy Issues Campaign Regulations for 78th Academy Awards®

Beverly Hills, CA — Regulations for studio-based marketing campaigns for the upcoming 78th Academy Awards® season have been approved by the Board of Governors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and are being distributed this week.

Only two real changes have been made to the campaign regulations document this year, said Academy Executive Administrator Ric Robertson, who oversees the program. “Understanding of and compliance with the Regulations is very high,” Robertson said. “We seem to have reached a point, for now anyway, where the document is really already addressing most of questions and possible scenarios.”

The most significant change from last year is an addition to section 1, which governs screenings. Following the announcement of the nominations, Academy members not directly connected with a film or its producing or distributing studio are now expressly prohibited from acting as the “host” of a screening of the film.

“This additional restriction builds upon the Board’s belief that Academy members should not publicly register their support for contending films during certain parts of the voting process,” added Robertson. “Lending your name to a screening invitation in effect makes you part of that film’s campaign, and that’s something we’d like to minimize as much as possible.”

The other modification of note is in section 6, which governs references and links to websites. The new rule explicitly permits references and links to websites in communications to Academy members as long as those websites contain only basic screening information. Links or web addresses for sites that contain photographs, audio, video, graphical or other multimedia elements may not be distributed to members.

While not part of the Regulations document proper, there also is now a note directed to distributors, filmmakers and marketers in the Foreign Language Film, Documentary Film and Short Film categories. It is intended to clarify for these individuals that, while the majority of Regulations are applicable to them, some are not, particularly those that pertain to screeners. Members voting in those categories are required to view contending pictures at special Academy screenings.

The guidelines were formulated by the Academy’s Public Relations Branch Executive Committee, chaired by Sid Ganis.

Regulations concerning the promotion of films eligible for the 78th Academy Awards are available at

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It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon