The National Board of Review announced Wednesday it was shifting dates for its annual prizes from November 2020 to Jan. 26, 2021. The new date aligns itself with qualifying Oscar films.
In a statement, the NBR extended its eligibility period saying: “Films will be eligible if screened by the NBR and released either theatrically or digitally on or before Feb. 28, 2021. If a movie’s release is digital, it must have had a theatrical release planned prior to the onset of COVID-19.”
“This moment in time has only further proven the importance of cinema. A well-told story has unmatched power to bring us all together, no matter how physically far we are from one another,” said Annie Schulhof, President of the National Board of Review. “We look forward to honoring the best films and performances of 2020, a highly unusual year that is nevertheless poised to provide unique and outstanding achievements in cinema.”
The NBR will unveil plans for its celebration at a later date.
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Since first citing year-end cinematic achievements in 1929, the National Board of Review has recognized a vast selection of outstanding studio, independent, foreign-language, animated and documentary films, often propelling recipients such as Martin Scorsese’s “The Irishman,” Peter Farrelly’s “Green Book” and George Miller’s “Mad Max: Fury Road” into the larger awards conversation. NBR also stands out as the only film organization that bestows a film history award in honor of former member and film historian William K. Everson. Last year’s best picture winner was “The Irishman” while “Parasite” won best foreign film.
Many of the films that win at the NBR have gone on to receive a Best Picture nomination at the Academy Awards.