Academy considering push by NYC leaders to move part of Oscars to New York

Friday, August 9th 2002, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

NEW YORK (AP) _ Could Oscar be coming to New York?

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and a group of New York leaders have been talking about moving part of next year's Academy Awards show to New York City to help the city recover from the Sept. 11 terror attacks.

The group of New Yorkers _ including Gov. George Pataki, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Miramax Films Co-Chairman Harvey Weinstein _ asked the academy to consider bringing at least a portion of the March 23 event to New York.

``New York City is the entertainment capital of the world and there's no better way to demonstrate that than to hold the premier event in show business,'' Bloomberg administration spokesman Edward Skyler told The Associated Press on Friday.

The academy is seriously considering the idea as a one-time nod to New York, academy President Frank Pierson told The New York Times and the Los Angeles Times.

He said an early proposal from Weinstein to move the entire show to New York was ``out of the question'' because the show is a Hollywood staple and because of the academy's contractual obligations.

But ``New York will be a huge presence in next year's show,'' he said. ``America wouldn't be America without New York and the movie business wouldn't be the movie business without New York. Just like the movies, it's part of our culture and our lives.''

He said any decisions would have to come after a producer is selected for next year's show, most likely by next month.

Still to be determined are which segments of the show might be shifted. Events could be held at Radio City Music Hall or at Madison Square Garden, The New York Times reported.

The events could bring millions of dollars to the city, where tourist-driven industries are trying to recover from the attacks' impact.

Daniel Doctoroff, New York's deputy mayor for economic development and rebuilding, has been leading the Bloomberg administration's Oscar pitch as part of a larger push to bolster the city's economy, Skyler said. Marquee events the city is trying to attract include the Super Bowl and the 2004 Republican and Democratic conventions.

The Oscars ceremony returned to Hollywood last year for the first time since 1960, to its new home at the Kodak Theatre. For years the event was held at the Shrine Auditorium and the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in downtown Los Angeles.