The US Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences (AMPAS)has further tightened the number of producers who can takehome an Oscar.

In approving rules for the 78th Annual AcademyAwards this week, the AMPAS board decided that its Producers Branch ExecutiveCommittee will "designate the qualifying producer nominees for each of thenominated pictures."

The decision means that the producers committee, rather thanthe producers of nominated films themselves, will decide who goes home with a.

Academy president Frank Pierson said AMPAS was "furtherreducing the possibility of someone receiving one of our highest awards withouthaving really done the job of a producer."

The number of producers receiving an Oscar for a BestPicture winner has been a controversial topic in recent years. Before thisweek's decision the Academy's Producers Branch only got involved when a filmhad more than four credited producers and the producers themselves could notagree on which four would get the statuettes. Now, the producer credits of allcontending pictures with more than one producer listed will be vetted forlegitimacy.

The Producers Guild of America (PGA) said the decisionmarked AMPAS' official adoption of the PGA's Producers Code of Credtis (PCOC).PGA president Kathleen Kennedy said in a statement that "The Academy's decisionto use our guidelines of what criteria must be met to earn a 'Produced By'credit is the ultimate validation of our members' work."

New Academy rules for next March's Oscars also limit thenumber of songwriters who can receive a statuette in the Original Song categoryto three.