Here’s What to Know About the 2021 Oscars, Including How to Watch
Breaking down all you need to know about this year's Oscars, from the star-studded guest list and the dress code to how this year's show will be different.
After a number of delays and a prolonged wait, the 2021 Oscars are finally upon us. And with pandemic-mandated health guidelines still in place, Hollywood’s biggest night is sure to look quite different this year. Here’s everything you need to know about the 93rd Academy Awards.
When are the 2021 Oscars?
This year’s ceremony will take place on Sunday, April 25 at 8 p.m. EST. In a typical year, the Oscars are held much earlier, but were forced to a later date because of the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, the eligibility window was also extended, meaning films released between January 1, 2020 and February 28, 2021 were able to be considered for nominations.
Where are the 2021 Oscars being held?
The awards will be taking over multiple locations this year. Elements of the ceremony will happen at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles (where the big event is usually held) as well as L.A.’s Union Station. Originally, producers had hoped to have all nominees attend in person, eliminating the need for a virtual component. Instead, the Academy will be putting up satellite locations in both London and Paris for those who cannot make it to L.A. in time. The hope is that producers will be able to avoid some of the technical difficulties and general awkwardness we’ve seen at other Zoom-only award shows.
Who’s hosting the 2021 Oscars?
The short answer: No one.
For the third year in a row, the Academy Awards will be going forward host-free. Acclaimed filmmaker Steven Soderbergh, who is one of the producers of the 2021 ceremony, told The Hollywood Reporter that they considered recruiting a host, but instead divided the event into “discreet storytelling chapters” which will each have a “guide.” These guides will apparently “have a lot more to do than [in] a typical presenter situation” and will tell personal stories about the nominated films.
Which celebrities will be at the 2021 Oscars?
In an effort to hold a pandemic-safe event, this year’s ceremony will be a much more intimate affair than what we’re used to seeing. Only presenters, nominees and their plus one will be able to attend in person.
Ahead of this weekend’s event, some of the star-studded presenter list has been revealed. Last year’s acting winners Brad Pitt, Renée Zellweger, Laura Dern and Joaquin Phonix will be on hand, as will celebs like Halle Berry, Reese Witherspoon, Zendaya, Rita Moreno, Regina King, Angela Bassett and Parasite director Bong Joon Ho.
Who’s nominated at the 2021 Oscars?
Mank, Nomadland, Minari, Promising Young Woman, Sound of Metal, The Father, Judas and the Black Messiah and The Trial of the Chicago 7 are all competing for Best Picture. Mank, the Netflix drama directed by David Fincher, earned the most nominations this year, scoring 10 total nods. Plus, with their Best Director nominations, Nomadland’s Chloé Zhao and Promising Young Woman’s Emerald Fennell became the first two women to be recognized in the category at the same time. Zhao is also the first-ever woman of colour to get a nod in the category.
For a full list of the nominees (and to find out where to watch them), click here.
Will there be a red carpet at the 2021 Oscars?
There will be an Oscars red carpet this year, but expect to a much smaller fête than we’re used to. “It a teeny-tiny red carpet,” producer Stacey Sher said at a press conference. “It’s a very small footprint for safety reasons, obviously.” Instead, The Hollywood Reporter reports that the pre-show will be set up in the two exterior courtyards at Union Station and will aim to be a loose, happy gathering for the nominees.
Is there a dress code at the 2021 Oscars?
There is, and it’s one producers are taking very seriously. “We’re aiming for a fusion of Inspirational and Aspirational, which in actual words means formal is totally cool if you want to go there, but casual is really not,” read a letter sent out to attendees by organizers. The TL;DR version? No tie-dye hoodies à la Jason Sudeikis at the Golden Globes.
We can also expect to see masks at the show, but Soderbergh had some vague words to share about them during a press conference: “Here’s our quote on that, masks are going to play a very important role in the story of this evening. If that’s cryptic, it’s meant to be. But that topic is very central to the narrative.”
What else will be different about the 2021 Oscars?
The true extent of how different the 2021 Oscars ceremony will look is still TBD. But one other notable break in tradition will be at the pre-show, during which pre-recorded performances of the five nominated original songs will air (instead of performed live during the ceremony like usual).
There will also be a post-show hosted by actors Colman Domingo and Andrew Rannells after the event called Oscars: After Dark, which will feature interviews, recaps and an inside look at the winners getting their statuettes engraved.
Where can I watch the 2021 Oscars in Canada?
Canadians can watch the 93rd Academy Awards on CTV or stream them online at ctv.ca by selecting a TV provider and signing in with a CTV account.