This year, Netflix made its mark at the Oscars with multiple nominations and wins. The Netflix Original “Roma” took home three wins alone, including best director, best cinematography, and best foreign language film.
However, Netflix’s success irked some members of the film industry, like director Steven Spielberg, who proposed changing the Academy’s rules to make it difficult for streaming services to qualify.
But now, it seems Netflix can relax. The Academy is leaving its rules unchanged, so Netflix and other streaming services — including Hulu, Amazon, and more — can compete in the Oscars without additional hurdles.
Before the Academy’s vote, the Department of Justice warned that excluding streaming services like Netflix and Hulu could raise antirust concerns.
“In the event that the Academy — an association that includes multiple competitors in its membership — establishes certain eligibility requirements for the Oscars that eliminate competition without procompetitive justification, such conduct may raise antitrust concerns,” Chief of the DOJ’s Antitrust Division, Makan Delrahim, said in a letter to the Academy sent in April.
Netflix joined the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) earlier this year, a step that highlighted its efforts to be taken more seriously in the film industry. Video streaming surpassed cable subscriptions in 2018 which also made services like Netflix and Amazon huge competitors in the film industry.
Now that the rules are staying the same, Netflix will have new competitors to deal with. Disney’s streaming service, Disney Plus, is set to roll out later this year and isn’t holding back any punches.
Netflix seems to be gearing up for the year ahead by increasing its subscription prices and buying up the best content it can find. With industry oldheads like Disney entering into the streaming business, Netflix and Amazon may have to readjust again.