Academy Extends Oscar Nomination Deadline to Jan. 4

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Extra day added as members complain of problems logging in to the new e-voting site.

Oscar voters get one more day.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has extended the deadline for members to vote for Oscar nominations by one day to 5 p.m. Pacific time on Friday, Jan. 4. Members may vote online or via a paper ballot -- but any votes received after the deadline will not be counted.

“By extending the voting deadline we are providing every opportunity available to make the transition to online balloting as smooth as possible,” Academy COO Ric Robertson said in a release. “We’re grateful to our global membership for joining us in this process.” 

The Academy said its online voting system will only close for two hours -- from 5-7 p.m. PST  on Thursday, Jan. 3 -- and will stay open until 5 p.m. PST on Friday. 

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It's the first year that Academy members can vote online, and members have reported problems. 

The Academy's announcement appears to acknowledge those problems. As THR reported last week, many members who opted to vote online have been unable to log in to the voting website with the special password that they had been asked to create, prompting them to contact the Academy's 24-hour voting help line.

The Academy then either sent them a new password (which required an additional waiting period before it took effect because the password database only updates twice a day) or, upon request, a paper ballot (which also takes time to arrive even when sent via mail or FedEx).

This deadline extension will prove helpful for members who return from vacation, attempt to vote Wednesday and experience problems with online voting that jeopardize their ability to submit a ballot before Thursday's original deadline. The additional day would, theoretically, allow the Academy to FedEx them a paper ballot that would arrive on Thursday, which could be mailed back to PricewaterhouseCoopers that day and arrive before the new cutoff time Friday.