Stunt performers are getting no love from Oscar.

Oscar Rejects Stunt Performers
The men and women who routinely leap from buildings, set themselves on fire, drive automobiles recklessly in dangerous conditions and so on, all for the entertainment of the movie-going public, have been denied their request for a stunt-based Academy Award.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced Wednesday that its Board of Governors had voted against granting stunt performers a category at the 78th Academy Awards.
“At a time when the Academy is trying to find ways to reduce the numbers of statuettes given out, and looks at categories with an eye more focused on reduction than addition, the board is simply not prepared to institute any new annual awards categories,” Academy President Frank Pierson said in a statement Wednesday.
Stunt performers pushed the issue the best way they knew how. Last week, about 75 men and women demonstrated outside Academy headquarters, performing stunts to draw attention to their movement.
“Stunt coordinators are the reason that action sequences come to life on screen,” Jack Gill of Stunts Unlimited told Daily Variety last week. “They are responsible for every aspect in the film from the smallest comedic pratfall to the most elaborate 100-vehicle car chase.”
Gill has been pushing for a stunt Oscar since 1991. On Wednesday, he expressed his dejection upon learning that the Academy had rejected the request once again.
“I’m disappointed,” Gill told the Associated Press. “Everyone believes we should have a category except the board of governors.”
Hollywood types such as Screen Actors Guild president Melissa Gilbert, Robert De Niro, Steven Spielberg and Dustin Hoffman had backed the stunt coordinators on their quest.
However, in the past 25 years, the Academy has created only two new award categories: Best Makeup in 1981 and Best Animated Feature in 2000.
In a further movement to pare down the number of little gold men handed out at the awards ceremony, the Academy announced Wednesday that it will determine which producers will be given credit in the Best Picture category and that the number of statuettes handed out in the category would be limited to three.
“What we’re doing is further reducing the possibility of someone receiving one of our highest awards without really having done the job of a producer,” Pierson said.
For the first time, a limitation was also placed on the number of songwriters that can receive an Oscar in the Best Original Song category. The Academy said that it would normally only award two Oscars in the category, but would reserve the right to award three, should three individuals have contributed equally to the winning song.
The 78th Annual Academy Awards will be held March 5, 2006 at Hollywood’s Kodak Theater.