1 February 2013 3:51 PM, PST | Thompson on Hollywood | See recent Thompson on Hollywood news »

It was too good to last. As the Academy continues on the path of making changes, it has abandoned one of its best practices. At Monday's annual Nominees Luncheon, instead of having all the Oscar nominees sit with a smattering of Academy governors, execs and press randomly assigned on the day by lottery, there will be a seating plan. My guess? Too many powerful folks finally prevailed, demanding protection from the unknown, whether it was aloof Daniel Day-Lewis or cranky Tommy Lee Jones. The Academy should never have backed down, because it will be difficult to go back. It was a lovely and honorable tradition. Seventeen of the 20 acting nominees are expected to show up at noon at the Beverly Hilton on Monday, among more than 160 Oscar nominees, when the Academy honors this year's Oscar contenders. The annual group photo is part of the tradition, as each nominee gets called »

- Anne Thompson

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