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'Hurt Locker' producer un-invited to Oscars

March 2, 2010 12:00:00 AM PST
Nicolas Chartier, a producer of the film "The Hurt Locker," has been told he is not welcome at Sunday's Academy Awards by the executive committee of the producers branch of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Chartier, one of four producers of "The Hurt Locker," sent e-mails to academy members urging support for the war drama. In the messages, he broke the rules by disparaging another film. Academy members are forbidden from urging support for a film at the expense of another contender.

Chartier asked for member support for his movie against big-budget films, "not a $500 million film," an obvious reference to blockbuster best-picture contender "Avatar." He also asked voters to rank "Avatar" at number 10 in the list of the year's best films, and for "The Hurt Locker" to be ranked number one.

Chartier apologized for the infraction and said he regretted it.

The Academy rules prohibit "casting a negative or derogatory light on a competing film."

If "The Hurt Locker" wins best picture, Chartier will still receive an Oscar, but at a later date.

The other three producers of "The Hurt Locker," director Kathryn Bigelow, screenwriter Mark Boal and Greg Shapiro, are not affected by the penalty and will be allowed to attend the awards show. The Associated Press contributed to this report.