The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences is looking into possibly relocating the Oscars from the Kodak Theatre to the Nokia Theatre starting in 2014, according to reports by The Hollywood Reporter (who first reported the story) and Los Angeles Times.
Preliminary discussions are underway between the Academy and AEG, the owners of the Nokia, which serves as home of the Emmy Awards and the American Music Awards. THR notes that the Shrine Auditorium and Music Center are also potential bidders for the film industry award show.
Hollywood would be the biggest loser if the Oscars end up relocating, according to the LAT:
Leron Gubler, the president/CEO of the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, said that should the Oscars move out of Hollywood, it would be a big blow to the community.
“Obviously, we’d be very disappointed. The Kodak Theatre was designed for the academy but more then that, historically the academy is tied to Hollywood with the first Academy Awards held in Hollywood,” Gubler said. “This, on top of the academy’s decision to move their museum out of Hollywood an onto Wilshire Boulevard would send a very negative message to the community.”
A representative for City Councilman Eric Garcetti spoke up for the Kodak. ” The Academy Awards belong in Hollywood,” chief of staff Yusef Robb said.
The Kodak Theatre opened in 2001 and was built with the Oscars in mind. ESPN went through a similar move in 2008 when they moved the ESPY Awards from the Kodak to Nokia.
“The opportunities are so much greater at the Nokia,” Ron Semiao, senior vice president at ESPN, told THR. “AEG has an infrastructure with so much marketing support it can really help you grow. It kicked the Espys up a notch as an event just because of everything that is there.”