Thursday, February 8, 2024

31 Days of Oscar starts tomorrow

It's time for your friendly reminder that TCM is starting its annual 31 Days of Oscar programming tomorrow (Feb. 9). Back when they first started it, the Oscars were held in late March, which is why the programming was in March and why it got called 31 Day of Oscar, since the month is 31 days. Then at some point the awards got moved to February. TCM kept the 31 days theme, which if I had to guess is because they had an agreement with the Academy that allowed used of the phrase "31 Days of Oscar", no more or no fewer days, since "Oscar" in terms of the movie award is trademarked. This even though the programming would flow into the first few days of March.

This year, the reason for starting the programming on Feb. 9 is more obvious, as I mentioned at the beginning of the month. The real-life awards this year will be handed out on Sunday, March 10, which just so happens to be the 31st day of 31 Days of Oscar if you begin the programming on Feb. 9. Clever, isn't it?

It looks as though this year, the overall theme for the programming is once again based on categories, with each broadcast day's programming being given to movies that won or were nominated in a given category. Since there aren't 31 categories, some categories get more than one day. It also looks like prime time is for movies that actually won in the given category, with the morning and afternoon being for mere nominees. Well, more or less since sometimes the winners start before prime time. At least, this is what I can glean from the categories where I recognize who won.

I know there are a lot of people who are big fans of old movies who complain about 31 Days of Oscar because it means TCM only shows a limited set of movies for an entire 12th of the year. For me, I look at it a bit differently. TCM has always needed to try to find new viewers, people who are not yet really fans of old movies who would need some good reason to be drawn in. Oscar month is, I think, not a bad way to try doing that. And, of course, sometimes you want to see a better-known old movie you've already seen before and don't mind watching again.

No comments: