After four terms as President of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Sid Ganis is stepping down. No more will be the man who has overseen some of the most substantial changes in Oscar history, the biggest being the recent change from 5 Best Picture nominees to 10. Now there is a job opening and the question is, who will fill it?
One of the 43 members of the Academy’s board of governors will be appointed to succeed Ganis. Amongst those 43 are some pretty heavy hitters – superstar Tom Hanks, Pixar director/producer John Lasseter, or writer James L. Brooks. Whoever is selected will be essentially required to take a break from films and dedicate full time to leading AMPAS.
Peter Bart from Variety reports on some of the perks of leading the Academy:
Though he receives no salary, the new Academy president will enjoy a few perks to compensate for these headaches. There’s the regal title and office. There’s also diplomatic visits to foreign countries — Ganis has spent time in Iran and China and invited deputations of filmmakers from those countries to visit Hollywood.
Not to mention the privileges of announcing the nominees every year and delivering a speech at the Oscars ceremony. Sid Ganis was a little weak on that end.
Bart also points out:
Whoever is anointed will confront two key problems. There’s the Oscar show, which supplies 80% of the Academy’s revenue and also most of its rancor. And there’s the problem of raising the almost $400 million needed to construct a new Academy museum, which will eventually sit on eight acres of Academy-owned land near the Arclight Theater. When the economy got clobbered a year ago, the museum was put on hold.
When it comes to deciding who should be the new president of the committee, my vote goes to the Fonz! That’s right, Henry Winkler is one of the 43 members on the board of governors and in the running.