The Best Picture category will now have 10 nominees instead of five. It's a dramatic change that will upend the award process and probably generate a bit more excitement - not to mention boost the marketing costs for studios. The move is a return to Oscar traditions of the 1930s and '40s, when 10 nominees were common.
*As Tom O'Neil posts, the most famous top 10 list of nominees came in 1939. "Gone With the Wind" claimed the prize, but get a look at the other nine: "Dark Victory," "Goodbye, Mr. Chips," "Love Affair," "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington," "Ninotchka," "Of Mice and Men," "Stagecoach," "The Wizard of Oz" and "Wuthering Heights."
"Having 10 best picture nominees is going [to] allow academy voters to recognize and include some of the fantastic movies that often show up in the other Oscar categories, but have been squeezed out of the race for the top prize," [said academy President Sid Ganis].