Academy Asks Staff, Members to Avoid Facilities Amid Coronavirus

Oscar Statue at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences - Getty-H 2019
Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Images

Reflecting growing concern about the coronavirus pandemic, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences CEO Dawn Hudson and president David Rubin sent an email on Friday evening to their organization's roughly 8,000 members asking them to stay away from Academy facilities — which are located in Los Angeles, New York and London — until further notice, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.

The Academy missive, noting that "the health and safety of our staff and members [is] our top priority," conveys that Academy employees have been "encouraged" to work from home and the organization is "asking that no members visit our facilities in any of our locations at this time."

This comes on the heels of Wednesday's decision by the Oscar-dispensing organization to cancel all large gatherings that had been scheduled in the immediate future.

The full text of Friday's email appears below.

* * *

Dear Members,

We continue to monitor the quickly evolving COVID-19 situation, keeping the health and safety of our staff and members our top priority. We are following guidelines set forth by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) and have encouraged employees to work from home. We are also asking that no members visit our facilities in any of our locations at this time. This is a fast-moving situation that we are monitoring closely and will adjust accordingly.

All in-person meetings have now moved to conference calls or Zoom video conference. As you know, all non-essential travel, tours, screenings, and public events have been cancelled for March. Please continue to check the member portal for any updates in programs.

We are fortunate that much of our work (awards submissions, membership applications/research, streaming, Board of Governors elections, digital outreach) can continue online and be managed remotely. We are increasing our communications to all members so everyone is updated on the status of meetings, calls, online voting dates, etc. and so business operations can proceed successfully. If you are a member of a branch executive committee, Nicholl committee, or Student Academy Awards committee, your Academy liaison will be reaching out to you directly to confirm dates and agendas for virtual meetings on all upcoming business.

We will continue to keep you informed as things develop, and appreciate your understanding, support, and ongoing cooperation during this time. Please take care of yourselves and your loved ones and we will continue to stay in touch.

Dawn Hudson

David Rubin