AceShowbiz - Oscar nominees have been warned that connecting to the Academy Awards via video link is "not an option."
The ceremony will take place next month (Apr21) as an in-person event, with organisers opting to treat it as an "active movie set," with various coronavirus safety measures in place.
In a letter sent out to over 200 nominees on the shortlists on Thursday (18Mar21), producers detailed the "great lengths" they were going to in a bid to stage a "safe and enjoyable" evening.
While producers Steven Soderbergh, Jesse Collins, and Stacey Sher acknowledged some may be uneasy about it being an in-person event at Los Angeles' Union Station - albeit with "additional show elements live from the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood" - they sought to offer reassurance.
They wrote, "Of course, your first thought is CAN THAT BE DONE SAFELY? The answer is YES, IT CAN. We are treating the event as an active movie set, with specially designed testing cadences to ensure up-to-the-minute results, including an on-site COVID safety team with PCR testing capability."
Guests attending from outside of Los Angeles will receive further "specific instructions", which will vary from those already living in the city. And those who are "unable to attend because of scheduling or continued uneasiness about travelling" were told "there will not be an option to Zoom in for the show."
"We are going to great lengths to provide a safe and ENJOYABLE evening for all of you in person, as well as for all the millions of film fans around the world, and we feel the virtual thing will diminish those efforts," they added.
The producers encouraged winners to make speeches "personal" but keep them short and expressed their hope that the ceremony, which takes place on 25 April, will have a "feeling of casual exchange and good humour."
And they want to set the tone with a "pre-show gathering" immediately before the ceremony.
"The good news is you should be pretty relaxed by show time because you will have been at a pre-show gathering in the Union Station courtyard for the previous ninety minutes with your fellow nominees and their guests (ONLY nominees and their guests will be attending the show, by the way. Oh, and the presenters!)," they continued.
The letter also touched on the night's dress code, stressing casual attire would not be welcomed.
"You're wondering about the Dress Code (as well you should). 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," the note concluded. In addition to having a smaller guest list this year, it was previously announced that both the annual Oscar Nominees Luncheon, which takes place in the lead up to the ceremony, and the post-event Governor's Ball have been cancelled for this year.