Dave Karger
September 30, 2011 AT 04:00 AM EDT

The Academy giveth, the Academy taketh away. With its new campaign regulations, the Oscars’ governing body now allows awards consultants to target their sales pitches directly to Academy members, but it also limits the number of events they can plan. After nominees are announced on Jan. 24, each actor may attend only two Q&A’s or panels to promote a film. ”That gives an advantage to a movie like The Help, which has such a big cast,” says one veteran campaigner. The upshot: Since surefire Help nominees Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer can’t carry the campaign on their own, their costars Jessica Chastain and Allison Janney might want to clear their February calendars.

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