Per tradition, AMC Theaters and Regal Cinemas will be screening this year’s nominees for Best Picture back-to-back as part of their annual Oscar showcases (Regal has its Best Picture Film Festival and AMC has its Best Picture Showcase). However, one nominee that will not be playing during these events is Alfonso Cuarón’s “Roma,” which tied with “The Favourite” for earning the most nominations this year. Among “Roma’s” 10 Oscar nominations are Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actress, and Best Supporting Actress. Deadline reports AMC and Regal are barring “Roma” from their Best Picture showcases because it is a Netflix release.
In a statement commenting on the decision, AMC said, “For more than a decade, movie-lovers have enjoyed the AMC Best Picture Showcase to catch up on the nominated films that played at AMC throughout the prior year. This year, Academy members nominated a film that was never licensed to AMC to play in our theaters. As such, it is not included in the AMC Best Picture Showcase.”
Regal did not issue a statement, but it did leave out “Roma” on the complete list of movies playing in its Best Picture Film Festival, which include “Black Panther,” “BlacKkKlansman,” “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “The Favourite,” “Green Book,” “A Star Is Born,” and “Vice.” These major exhibition chains have remained firm in not allowing Netflix original films to screen, even though “Roma” broke with tradition by opening in select theaters three weeks before its Netflix launch on December 21. Because Netflix releases do not adhere to the standard 90-day theatrical window, in which films must play 90 days before being available for streaming or VOD, AMC and Regal choose not to exhibit Netflix movies.
“Roma” dominating the Oscar nominations is a historic win for Netflix, which now finally has a Best Picture nomination under its belt. The movie is now streaming globally on Netflix. Regal’s Best Picture Film Festival runs February 15-24, while AMC’s Best Picture Showcase takes place February 16.