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The Dolby Theatre in Hollywood is pretty large and has a lot of seats that are filled each year at the Oscar ceremony.

But who gets invited and who determines where they sit?

Are there rules or guidelines laid down...and by who?

45

It is usually decided by the academy.

Generally, there are some traditional rules followed by the academy, most of which were established by Otto Spoerri.

A few guidelines are (borrowed from Quora):

  1. The biggest stars sit in the first few rows.
  2. Those who are favored to win are seated on the aisle, so they don't have to climb over others to walk to the stage.
  3. Those competing in the same category are never seated near enough to one another so that they'll appear in the same camera shot.
  4. Ex-spouses, ex-lovers, and ex-friends are never placed anywhere near each other (this is a big one).
  5. And of course, the 700 seats available along the 500 foot walkway are chosen randomly.
  6. Only the individuals who have been pre-approved by the academy will have access to the bleachers.
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    Sounds like a lot of work for someone, or a team of people. People who would need a lot of insider information and discretion. Any information on who exactly would carry out that sensitive task? – Elise van Looij Feb 27 '17 at 18:10
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    FWIW bullet points 1–5 appear to have been taken from this 2010 New York Post article. – Jordan Feb 27 '17 at 20:07
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    I'd imagine #4 would be quite difficult to achieve given Hollywood relationships... – HorusKol Feb 27 '17 at 22:24
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    Don't forget about the seat fillers – BruceWayne Feb 28 '17 at 3:46
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    If you're lucky you might even grab an Oscar of your own! youtube.com/watch?v=HrgnaN8_w-w – JonathanReez Feb 28 '17 at 9:11

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