The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences stands on the cusp of a monumental centennial celebration. In anticipation of the 100th Oscars ceremony in 2028, the Academy has unveiled a new initiative: Academy100. This global community-building, revenue diversification and outreach campaign aims to raise $500 million by the end of 2028. To date, more than $100 million has already been secured.

"We want to prepare for the next 100 years," Bill Kramer, the Academy's CEO, says in conversation with Elisa Osegueda, A.frame's Editor-in-Chief. "The Academy is the premier global film organization — we have the most prestigious awards of cinematic excellence, the world's largest film museum and film-related collection, and a membership of the most esteemed film artists and professionals in the world. Academy100 will position us to continue to be the global home of cinema."

Academy100 will raise vital support for programs that preserve film history, for world-class film exhibitions, screenings and publications, and for educational programs that inspire and provide opportunities for emerging and diverse artists to join the filmmaking community. Throughout all of the components of Academy100 is a deep foundational commitment to diversity, equity, access, and inclusion.

"The Academy sits at the center of the global film community, and Academy100 is designed to ensure that all of our programs thrive long into the future," Kramer says. "We need to raise funds at this level so that when we move past our 100th Oscars, we have an endowment and reserves of a scale that will ensure that our future is sustainable."

Below, Kramer elaborates on his vision for Academy100.

Elisa Osegueda: What's the driving force behind this campaign? Could you share with us your vision and your primary objective?

Bill Kramer: The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences firmly sits in two distinct but overlapping worlds: the film industry and the non-profit arts and culture sector — I think it’s so important for everyone to understand that the Academy is a non-profit cultural organization. Both are going through radical business model shifts right now – audiences are changing and revenue streams are changing. To evolve and to have a sustainable and successful future, we need a diversified base of support. Our 100th Oscars will take place in 2028, and we want to prepare for the next 100 years.

What makes this campaign stand out in such a competitive landscape? How are you planning to engage with potential donors?

Over the last year and a half, we’ve already secured over $100 million of the $500 million goal, so we are off to a great start. The campaign to build the Academy Museum and the last two and half years of operating the Academy Museum has introduced thousands of new donors and prospects to the Academy. The Academy100 campaign is a great way to build on this progress.

I think it's really important to note that this is a global outreach and revenue diversification campaign. We are going to be traveling around the world as well as doing a lot of work in the U.S. — working with philanthropists, corporations, foundations, Academy members, film industry professionals, arts patrons, and more to bring them closer to our programs and to secure far-reaching support from this diverse groups of stakeholders. Some of this work will involve hosting events, panels, screenings, and industry gatherings, in addition to touring our incredible Academy Museum exhibitions. This is all about taking our incredible content — that is without peer — and bringing it to the world in a big way.

This initiative is absolutely monumental, a first for the Academy. Which strategies need to be put in place to ensure the successful allocation of all these funds?

With any successful revenue diversification campaign, you must start with clarity around what programs you plan to support through the work of the campaign's efforts. We are launching Academy100 to support a wide variety of initiatives — both during the life of the campaign via annual support and beyond the campaign through growing our endowment. This will move us into the future in a sustainable manner, and ensure that the Academy can evolve. The initiatives supported by Academy100 include our collection, education and talent development programs, Academy member and film industry engagement programs, exhibitions, screenings, publications, and so much more.

How do you guarantee transparency and accountability to your donors?

Oh, that’s a key part of any effective and ethical campaign. I see our donors as true partners and a core part of the Academy family. We could not accomplish our vital goals without them. We stay connected with our donors via reports, newsletters, in-person events, and more. And, they will always have access to our audits and our Federal Form 990, which includes revenue, expenditure, and income data. By becoming a donor to Academy100, you are becoming part of a network of diversified stakeholders who are building the Academy’s future. Transparency and accountability are essential.

What challenges do you imagine you might need to overcome to meet the Academy100 goal?

I see a lot of opportunities. We are globally recognized in such a powerful way — and what we are finding is that so many philanthropists, film industry professionals, corporations, and foundations want to engage with us to learn more about our plans. But, with all of this planning, strategy and good stewardship are essential. We have an incredible team led by Jenny Galante, our Executive Vice President of Revenue and Business Development, who is leading a lot of this work with me — and there's no one better!

I want to go back to something you said about how values, sustainability, and social responsibility are increasingly important values to donors. How does this campaign align with these values?

Diversity, equity, inclusion, sustainability, and belonging — these are big conversations that we're having with our donors — which is great! Inspiring emerging and global artists to become filmmakers, diversifying the membership of the Academy, elevating new voices and work from marginalized communities via our exhibitions, screenings, and public programs, centering discussions of accessibility and sustainability in filmmaking — all of these components are at the heart of our work. This is how the organization is evolving. And Academy100 is deeply aligned with these values.

Looking beyond this campaign, what sort of future initiatives or expansion plans do you envision for the Academy? And how does this particular campaign serve as a stepping stone towards those goals?

I see the future of the Academy as one that is global, as one that centers our incredible collection and museum, as one that inspires new cinematic works and artists, and as one that develops vast and diverse new audiences for all of our work. No one in the world has this sort of intellectual content and rigor that we have. Academy100 will help provide the needed resources to move all of our programs into a bright and far-reaching future.

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