Dear Academy: Here's a Challenge.

LOS ANGELES, Jan. 10, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The nominations for the 85th Academy Awards were announced Thursday morning. The biggest takers were Lincoln with 12 nominations and Life of Pi with 11 nominations. Les Miserables and Silver Linings Playbook came in third with eight nominations.

But, where are the family films?

Dr. Ted Baehr, founder and publisher of Movieguide®, points out that Les Misérables is the only movie that borders on being family-approved, but most parents would still refrain from taking children to see it. Or even grandma, for that matter.

"Families want a movie that kids, parents, and grandparents can all enjoy. A good storyline and good acting, without extraneous sex and violence."

Dr. Baehr listed Ice Age: Continental Drift, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Odd Life of Timothy Green, and Wreck-It Ralph as possible family-friendly contenders for best movie.

The days of Oscar winners also being the biggest box office successes are long gone, Dr. Baehr points out. The "glory days" of Ben-Hur have given way to the present day – where the Oscars often are not well received by a large section of the American population.

According to John Horn of The Los Angeles Times, "audience support for serious cinema waned" in the last few years (http://lat.ms/c5xWKv).

"Though the little gold man is an imposing addition to any bookcase and briefly slakes the unquenchable vanity of filmmakers, producers and studio executives, its effect on a film's ultimate profitability is routinely negligible." Mr. Horn also said, in an article from 2008. "In some cases, an over-the-top campaign… can actually slash a film's profitability." (http://bit.ly/VVgFQL)."

"Middle America is starting to see the Oscars as a key to which movies they want to avoid, rather than which movies they want to see," Dr. Baehr says. "The Academy should reevaluate that problem."

"Movies are a form of art," he adds. "Wouldn't it be incredible art to see a director represent the horror of war without scaring away families with extreme gore and bloodshed? That would be much harder to do than splashing blood across the screen."

CONTACT: Natalie Fertig
Phone: 1-805-465-3573
Web: www.movieguide.org
Email: natalie@movieguide.org

Dr. Baehr is chairman of the Christian Film & Television Commission® (CFTVC) ministry and publisher of its family guide to movies, Movieguide® (www.movieguide.com). CFTVC and Movieguide® are international non-profit ministries dedicated to "redeeming the values of the entertainment industry by influencing industry executives and by informing and equipping the public about the influence of the entertainment media."

For more information, visit www.movieguide.com or call 1-888-899-6684.

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Source: Movieguide(R)