NEW YORK, NEW YORK – JULY 03: A person wearing gloves and a mask watches “Hamilton” on a phone while … [+]
If you’re hoping to see Hamilton win the ever-elusive Academy Award at the Oscars, you’ll be disappointed. And it has nothing to do with Disney+.
Due to an obscure rule the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has placed upon recorded stage performances, Hamilton is not allowed to win an Oscar. In fact, any film that depicts a recorded stage performance is not to be considered for an Oscar, according to Variety, which earlier reported on the rule. That means even if Hamilton earned rave reviews and was the best film of the year, because it depicts a recorded state performance, it’s disqualified from Oscar consideration.
That may be disappointing to the legion of Hamilton fans that have watched the film win nearly a dozen Tonys, a Grammy, and a Pulitzer. It might also disappoint those who enjoyed watching the film this weekend on Disney+ after it debuted on the streaming service Friday.
All signs point to Hamilton being a big hit on Disney+. In fact, a report earlier on Monday said Disney+ tallied more than 752,000 downloads over the weekend after the film, which stars Lin-Manuel Miranda, premiered. That was up 72% compared to the weekend download figures Disney+ tallied each weekend in June.
Despite that success, Hamilton won’t find its way to an Academy Award. But oddly enough, in 1976, the film Give ‘em Hell, Harry featured an on-stage performance and earned an Oscar nomination for its star James Whitmore, according to Variety.
So, why can’t Hamilton get the same treatment? The Academy made the decision in 1997 to remove stage performance consideration when it updated qualifications for the documentary category.