Dates announced for 2012 Oscars

Next year's Oscars show will take place on Sunday, February 26, the organizers of the movie industry's biggest awards fest said Tuesday.

Nominees for the famous golden statuettes - Hollywood's most coveted prizes, handed out at the climax of the annual awards season - will be announced on January 24, said the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Nominations ballots for the Academy Awards - presented at Tinsel Town's Kodak Theatre, and preceded by a 90-minute red carpet parade - will be mailed out on December 27, and must be returned by January 13.

Oscars winners are chosen by nearly 6,000 voting members of the Academy, who will cast their ballots for 2011 movies which fulfill strict criteria concerning their US release.

After the nominations are announced - five nominees in the major categories, 10 for best picture as introduced in 2010 - final ballots will be mailed on February 1.

The traditional Nominees Luncheon will be held on February 6, and polls will close on February 21, five days before the show itself.

This year's Academy Awards were dominated by British historical movie "The King's Speech," which was crowned with prizes for best picture and best director for Tom Hooper.

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