Introducing the Casting Category: The First New Competitive Oscar Since 2001

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, popularly known as the Oscars, has announced the addition of a brand new category for the 98th Annual Academy Awards in 2025. After years of effort, the Academy has established the Achievement in Casting category to recognize the essential role of casting directors in filmmaking.

This marks the first new category to be added to the prestigious awards ceremony since the creation of Best Animated Feature Film in 2001, bringing the total number of categories to 24. The decision demonstrates the Academy’s evolving recognition of the diverse contributions that make a film successful.

The addition of the Casting category is a significant step forward for the Academy, highlighting the importance of casting directors and their role in shaping the characters we see on screen. It reflects the industry’s growing acknowledgement of the vital work done by these professionals behind the scenes.

The Casting Directors Branch, established in 2013 and currently consisting of almost 160 members, expressed their gratitude to the Board of Governors and Academy leadership for their support in making this category a reality. Despite some objections in the past, particularly from members of the Directors branch who raised concerns about potential conflicts, the Board of Governors ultimately approved the addition.

Interestingly, the Television Academy has had Emmys for Casting Directors for quite some time, making the inclusion of this category in the Oscars long overdue. The move signals a desire for the film industry to catch up with its television counterpart in recognizing the excellence of casting directors.

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Further details regarding eligibility and voting for the Achievement in Casting category will be announced in April 2025, in conjunction with the complete 98th Academy Awards Rules. The specifics of the award’s presentation will be determined by the Academy’s Board of Governors and administrative leadership at a later date.

This development has ignited discussions within the industry about the potential establishment of further competitive categories. One area of interest is the recognition of stuntpersons, whose skill and risks contribute significantly to the success of action-packed films.

As the 98th Annual Academy Awards approach, the film community eagerly awaits the inclusion of the new Achievement in Casting category, celebrating the professionals responsible for bringing memorable characters to life on the big screen. It will undoubtedly be an exciting addition to the long-standing tradition of the Oscars.

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