The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has added more than 500 Oscar voters over the past year, according to the annual AMPAS update of the number of members in each of its branches.
As of Dec. 6, according to its Branch Count Report, the Academy has 9,537 total members, an increase of 585 over the 8,952 it had in last December’s count. Of those, 8,469 are eligible to vote, which is 567 more than the 7,902 voters last year.
This is the most eligible Oscar voters at any time since 1945, when the Academy had more than 9,000 voters because of its policy of allowing members of the actors, directors and writers guilds to vote. (Its own membership at that time, though, was less than 2,000.)
While the 567 new voters are substantially fewer than the 842 film professionals who were invited to join the Academy in June, the discrepancy is partly due to the fact that some members die each year and others move to retired, non-voting status. In addition, not everyone accepts the Academy’s invitation, while some are admitted as Associate Members, who cannot vote.
Of the Academy’s 17 branches, 16 saw an increase in membership in the past year. The Documentary Branch had the largest increase, gaining 86 members after inviting 98 to join. Other big increases came in the Short Films and Feature Animation Branch, which gained 81 members; the Executives Branch, which gained 64; the Marketing and Public Relations Branch, which gained 59; and the Visual Effects Branch, which gained 48.
The only branch to lose members since December 2018 was the Sound Branch, which began the year with 506 members and ended with 503, even though it invited 22 people to join in June.
The Actors Branch is still the Academy’s largest, with 1,324 members, followed by Short Films and Feature Animation with 740.
Here is the official Academy branch count as of Dec. 6, 2019:
Actors: 1,324 voting members (an increase of 19)
Casting Directors: 128 (+11)
Cinematographers: 273 (+9)
Costume Designers: 154 (+1)
Directors: 526 (+7)
Documentary: 486 (+86)
Executives: 591 (+64)
Film Editors: 345 (+22)
Makeup Artists and Hairstylists: 206 (+17)
Marketing and Public Relations: 514 (+59)
Music: 345 (+14)
Producers: 583 (+31)
Production Design: 343 (+21)
Short Films and Feature Animation: 740 (+81)
Sound: 503 (-3)
Visual Effects: 545 (+48)
Writers: 485 (+40)
Members-at-large: 378 (+40)
Total voting members: 8,469 (+567)
Associate members: 208 (+6)
Total active members: 8,677 (+573)
Retired members: 860 (+12)
Total members: 9,537 (+585)