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Oscar Nominees Must Prepare Two Speeches

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Feb. 16 2010, Updated 4:47 a.m. ET

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It's all about change at the Oscars this year. As well as expanding the Best Picture category to 10 movies, nominees are facing another twist: They must prepare two speeches to avoid boring the audience.

The stars up for the film world's highest accolades, including Meryl Streep, George Clooney, Sandra Bullock and Jeff Bridges, gathered on Monday for the annual Oscar-nominees luncheon in Beverly Hills to hear tips from the show's producers on giving the 45-second acceptance speeches.

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Oscar co-producer Bill Mechanic said the teary-eyed "thank-yous" are "the single most-hated thing on the show," reports Reuters.

The solution is to have the winners give two speeches: one onstage telling audiences what winning an Oscar means to them, and a second backstage for a "Thank You Cam," where winners can say "Thanks" to whomever they want.

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"Share your passion on what the Oscar means to you" with the audience, co-producer Adam Shankman told nominees at the luncheon.

He said the backstage video would be posted on the Web, and winners could use them however they liked — e-mail them to their friends and even post them on their Facebook pages.

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Just in case the nominees didn't understand the producers, they showed a videotape of past winners, including Renée Zellweger, talking about what winning meant to them.

Another change to the ceremony involves the statuettes' nameplates. Rather than waiting weeks for their nameplate to be fixed to their award, winners will have the nameplates engraved at the gala Governors Ball following the ceremony.

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