Home of The Academy Members Project - The largest public list of Oscar voters you'll find on the internet!

Saturday, June 9, 2012

The Academy Members Project Branch Statistics

Updated 6/1/2015  

Pictured: Cheryl Boone Isaacs is the President of the Academy. A member of the Public Relations Branch, she and her colleagues play an essential role in the way that movies are received by the public. It was Isaacs’ team, for example, that decided that the iconic picture of Tom Hanks sitting on a bench should be the key publicity image to represent best picture winner Forrest Gump, a sweeping decades-long historical fiction that could have potentially been received in any number of ways.

The Academy’s Branches

The Academy consists of 6,961 members (as of December 2014) who are divided into 17 branches, with three additional classifications for At Large Members (who get to vote for the Oscars), and Associate and Retired Members (who do NOT get to vote on the Oscars):

AMPAS Branches Full 2015.jpg

Since most people are only interested in the current voting members, the Retired and Associate members are often left out of the statistics that are reported in newspapers, leaving us with 6,124 voting members from the 17 branches and the At-Large members:

AMPAS Branches Voting 2015.jpg

While the picture above is factually accurate, I sometimes wonder if it contributes to misunderstandings about the Academy. For the general public who is already accustomed to associating films primarily with their actors, it is perhaps too easy to lose sight of the potential impact of the smaller branches. Yes, actors make up the largest single branch, but they are still only 20% of the Academy.

To keep myself from falling into this trap, I have begun imagining the branches in clusters. It’s not a perfect system, but the chart below reminds me to think about the Academy in different ways. For example, when I combine the producers, executives and public relations branches, they collectively make up a larger voting bloc than the actors do, lest I forget that the movie industry is as much about business as it is about art. Similarly, while the technical and craft specialists may be broken up into different branches, they constitute a greater proportion of the Academy than the famous directors that get labeled as auteurs. And while documentarians, animators and musicians may not have that much in common, it would be foolish to completely disregard the number of Oscar votes that come from the top left quarter of this chart.

AMPAS Branches Clumped 2015.jpg

Branch Statistics
(Numbers retrieved from The Wrap 12/19/2014)

Actors Branch: 1150 Members.

Casting Directors Branch: 76 Members

Cinematographers Branch: 226 Members.

Costume Designers Branch: 113 Members.

Designers Branch: 269 Members. Includes art directors, production designers and set decorators.

Directors Branch: 382 Members.

Documentary Branch: 222 Members.

Executives Branch: 457 Members.

Film Editors Branch: 236 Members.

Makeup Artists And Hairstylists Branch: 135 Members.

Music Branch: 244 Members.

Producers Branch: 485 Members.

Public Relations Branch: 378 Members.

Short Films And Feature Animation Branch: 387 Members.

Sound Branch: 428 Members.

Visual Effects Branch: 340 Members.

Writers Branch: 386 Members.

At Large Members: 210 Members. Includes stunt coordinators and production managers.

Associate Members: 168 Members. Includes talent agents and those who have contributed to the movie industry or the Academy in ways that don’t fit into the branches above. (Note that these members do not vote on the Oscars)

Retired Members: 669 Members. (Note that these members do not vote on the Oscars)

Know of an Academy member that we have missed? Think we have included someone who shouldn’t be here? The Academy Members Project is a work in progress, and welcomes your input! Additions, suggestions, corrections and verifications may be submitted in the comments section, or by emailing nevertooearlymoviepredictions@gmail.com.


  1. Jeeez this is so ambitious I'm kind of surprised you haven't been headhunted by the Academy Awards to run their stats division or something...

    1. Thanks Shep! I'm hoping that they at least call me in as a consultant when they discover that I've revealed a large enough cross-section and they decide to make the full list public! :)

  2. Was there a Casting Directors branch added in July of last year (with roughly 50 or so members)?

    1. Indeed, there was a new branch added this year for Casting Directors. They came out of the "At Large" group to form their own branch.

      I just haven't had a chance to update these graphs yet. I should get to that soon.