Producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron will not be returning to produce The Oscars Award Ceremony next year. The duo has produced the past three shows, in line with the contract they signed with the Academy in 2012.
For those who complained about this year's Academy Awards Ceremony, hosted by Neil Patrick Harris on 22nd February 2015, there's some good news: the producers will not be returning for next year's show. Producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron made the announcement on Thursday (26th March).
Neil Patrick Harris hosted the 87th Academy Awards in February 2015.
The Academy's Board of Governors met on Tuesday evening (24th March) to discuss the future of the awards and, although no decision was reached, Zadan and Meron have stated they will not be returning to the roles for next year's ceremony. They have cited their commitment to other projects as the reason for not returning to the show.
The 87th Academy Awards were the lowest rated Oscars ceremony for six years and host Patrick Harris also received less than warm reviews from critics. As Zadan noted, they were blamed things they had no control of.
"We get attacked, or have been attacked as the producers, for things we have nothing to do with," Zadan said in an interview with Deadline. "We are viciously attacked for In Memoriam, and nobody understands that the Academy board picks the people in the reel. We have nothing to do with it. We had a lot of people attacking us saying 'how dare you not put Joan Rivers in?"
However, it is their commitment to other projects, including live musical events and Broadway productions, which is their main reason for leaving the producing roles. Both Zadan and Meron executively produced Peter Pan Live! and they are reportedly working on another live television production for the 2015 holiday season.
"Frankly before the Oscars this year were even broadcast, we were questioning whether or not, if we were ever asked, whether we wanted to do it again," Meron said
"The past couple of years have been incredible, but at the same time, we've also put a lot of projects on hold, and they haven't been getting our full attention," he later added.
In addition to their comments to media outlets, Zadan and Meron publically thanked the Academy on twitter.
"Honored we had 3 yr prod[ucing] deal. 3 yrs stress & fun. Thrilled we were asked, happy to be moving on w/ lots of great friends. Thank you Acad.," Zadon wrote on Twitter following the announcement of the news.
Whilst Meron used the famous line in his tweet: "We'd like to thank the Academy."
Honored we had 3 yr prod deal. 3 yrs stress & fun. Thrilled we were asked, happy to be moving on w/ lots of great friends. Thank you Acad.— Craig Zadan (@craigzadan) March 26, 2015