Politics
Trail Guide: Coverage of the first Clinton-Trump debate
ENVELOPE

How actors are nominated for Oscars: A primer

Who nominates the actors for the Oscars? And how does the voting process work? Here's a step-by-step primer:

The Motion Picture Academy of Arts and Sciences has 6,261 voting members. The entire body votes for best picture.

Nominations for most of the remaining categories are determined by the balloting of the academy's various branches. A committee selects the foreign-language film nominees.

#OscarsSoWhite: Full coverage of the boycott and Hollywood's reaction

Nominations for the four acting categories are determined by the actors branch. It is, by far, the academy's largest branch with 1,138 voting members.

Before Friday's announcement, to become a member of the actors branch, an actor had to apply in writing and have that application signed by two current branch members. Under those rules, to qualify for membership, an actor needed three film credits, including one from the past five years. One exception: Most Oscar nominees receive an immediate invitation.

The academy's board of governors — currently 51 members, three from each of the academy's 17 branches — votes on each applicant at a scheduled meeting with the results announced in June.

Once a member, an actor votes for Oscar nominations online or, if requested, by paper ballot.

For each of the four acting categories — lead actor and actress, supporting actor and actress — voters are asked to list up to five names, ranking them in order of preference.

These nomination ballots are sorted based on the voters' first-place ranking. Actors receiving enough first-place votes — more than the threshold number arrived at by taking the total number of ballots received per category and dividing it by six (the number of possible nominees plus one) — become nominees.

After that first pass, PricewaterhouseCoopers accountants sort through the remaining ballots, removing the stack with the fewest votes and then reassigning those ballots to the voters' second-place selection. Ballots continue to be redistributed until five nominees reach the threshold number or until there are only five nominees remaining. Once the nominees are determined, all academy members vote on the winners.

ALSO:

Why the #OscarsSoWhite fuss matters

#OscarsSoWhite creator on Oscar noms: 'Don't tell me that people of color, women cannot fill seats'

Oscar diversity: It's been 54 years since a Latina took home an Academy Award

'Aunt Viv' blasts Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith over Oscars boycott

Marlon Wayans gets funny -- and serious -- with the #OscarsSoWhite boycott

Yes, Stacey Dash, white people do get NAACP Image and BET awards

Why the diversity controversy won't hurt the Academy Awards' bottom line

Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times
A version of this article appeared in print on January 23, 2016, in the News section of the Los Angeles Times with the headline "Here's how Oscar voting is done" — Today's paperToday's paper | Subscribe
77°