"Bruce Davis, the outgoing academy executive director, explained the change in a statement: "If there are only eight pictures that truly earn that honor in a given year, we shouldn’t feel an obligation to round out the number."
Interestingly, eight was the number proposed by Bill Condon and Larry Mark who produced the 2008 Oscars. That was how many that were nominated at the 5th Academy Awards back in 1932; "Grand Hotel" won Best Picture. However, the academy board went with an even 10, which had been the slate of Best Picture nominees from the ninth to the 16th years of the Oscars."
Here are my cents, make up your damn mind. Stop flip flopping this is not a Presidential debate, you are not John Kerry or Mitt Romney, make up your minds. I like the fact that there have been 10 nominees in the Best Picture category. Sure in the first year The Blind Side received a nominated (not deserving of a spot in the top twenty), but overall the nominees have been great. This system has worked, so where's the problem?
I do think that making sure the nominees are qualified makes sense, but will this flexible number prevent films from being nominated again, like The Dark Knight or films that do not fit within the traditional genre that the ATAS tends to go for. I know the Oscars are trying to shake things up and continue to make things interesting. By the time the Oscars happen these days the winners know they are winning, there have been very few surprises anymore.
This random number of nominees is not going to shake things up, rather I think voters should think with their own minds and pick the winners they think SHOULD win, rather than the winners who have been rubber stamped prior.