Next year’s Oscar telecast is going to look at bit different.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced in a letter to members Wednesday that it will be adding a category for blockbuster films, and will be shortening the telecast to just three hours (this year’s was almost four), by giving out some of the awards, presumably for the more minor categories, during commercial breaks.

The Academy says eligibility requirements will be forthcoming, but film critics are already deeply criticizing the move, which is seen by some as a desperate attempt to drum up declining ratings. A record low 26.5 million people watched this year’s telecast, a drop of nearly 20 percent from a year ago.

The 89th Oscar Ceremony

In recent years, The Oscars have been criticized for being out of touch with public tastes, often rewarding more niche films with trophies that most of the moviegoing public never sees.

A scene from this year’s “Avengers: Infinity War.” The inclusion of the new “popular film” category appears tailor made for the enormously popular Marvel film franchise.

What are your thoughts about shortening the Oscar telecast  and adding a popular film category?  Chime in with your comments below:

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