The board of directors of the French Film Academy resigned en masse on Thursday amid growing calls to modernize the organization after embattled filmmaker Roman Polanski was nominated a dozen times for this year’s César Awards, the French equivalent of the Oscars. According to IndieWire, the Academy of Cinema Arts and Techniques board wrote in a letter that they were resigning “to honor those who made the cinema in 2019, to regain serenity, and to make the cinema festival a celebration.” Their resignations come 15 days before the awards ceremony.
Earlier this week, hundreds of academy members signed an open letter calling for the “democratization” and a “complete overhaul” of the organization. The group took issue with the fact that they had no say in running the body or the César Awards themselves. The signatories sought to “revolutionize” the way the body operated, including democratizing the board of directors—who were appointed into their roles. The ceremony will reportedly take place on Friday, Feb. 28 at the Salle Pleyel theater in Paris.