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The Motion Picture Sound Editors shall annually present MPSE Golden Reel Awards for excellence in Sound Editing, including Dialogue Editing, ADR Editing, Sound Effects Editing, Sound Design, Music Editing and Foley Artistry.


The Rules of the MPSE Golden Reel Awards shall be determined by a majority vote of the Board of Directors and shall be ratified by the vote of the Active Members in good standing of the Motion Picture Sound Editors or by unanimous vote of the Board of Directors. Only after plurality approval of the Board of Directors and the Active Membership, or the unanimous vote of the Board of Directors, shall alterations of the Rules be in effect.


The following rules shall apply to all categories, except for the Verna Fields Student Award:

  1. To be eligible for nomination in any category entry paperwork must be submitted, fully completed and received by the specified time and date.

  2. All entries shall be eligible only in the form in which they are initially released in the United States.

  3. There will always be a minimum of three (3) nominees in a category. If there are less than three (3) entries, the entries shall be carried over to the following year,   with one exception. If there are less than three (3) submissions in either Feature Motion Picture - Underscore and or Feature Motion Picture - Musical the categories will be combined into a single category, Feature Motion Picture - Music, which will follow the rules according to the Feature Motion Picture - Music Score category.

  4. In all categories, the number of nominations shall not exceed eight (8) nor be less than three (3).

    In all categories, the minimum number of nominations shall correlate to the number of eligible submissions in each category in the following manner:

Number of Eligible Submissions

Minimum Number of Nominations








  1. Panel Chairs, having reviewed all submissions and their supporting documentation will cast a tie-breaking vote(s) in ties resulting in more than 8 nominations in all categories. A majority vote from the Board of Directors will be necessary to approve the tie-breaking vote.

  2. For Feature Film categories, a General Membership Nomination Round will be held. This vote will be available to all Active members of the MPSE. Only films that have completed submissions will populate the ballot. Active members of the MPSE may vote for up to six (6) submissions per category based on having screened those submissions and having personally deemed them worthy of recognition.

    Nominations from the General Membership Nomination Round will be determined by popular vote. The submission receiving the most votes in a category is guaranteed nomination and will set the Nomination Peak Vote for that category. Subsequent nominations determined by popular vote in the General Membership Nomination Round must fall within 30 votes of this nomination peak to be considered for nomination.

    Should this limitation cause the number of nominations to fall short of the minimum number of nominations in any Feature Film category, Panel Chairs, having reviewed all submissions and their supporting documentation, may:
    1. Make recommendations to follow the popular vote to achieve the minimum number of nominations
    2. Provide Chair Recommendations in accordance with General Rule #9 to achieve the minimum number of nominations.
    3. Make recommendations to both follow the popular vote and provide Chair Recommendations to nominate up to a maximum of eight (8) nominees.

  3. Advertisements, trailers, promos, or other commercial work in which the primary goal is to promote or raise awareness of a brand or product is not eligible and will not qualify for any award categories. This includes Computer Entertainment cut clips which are used solely for advertising / promotional purposes, which are also not eligible.

  4. Ballots shall always be counted by an independent arbitrator.

  5. The Sound Supervisor(s) shall be notified of their nomination by the Chairpersons. The Supervisor shall submit an entry form listing the qualifying crew with the correct spelling of each name.

  6. Chair Recommendation - In accordance with General Rule #6, Panel Chairs, having reviewed all submissions and their supporting documentation, have the option to suggest the promotion of a submission(s) that is/are an exemplary demonstration of the craft in question that did not receive qualifying votes to place as a nominee from the General Membership Nomination Round.

    Panel Chairs must make a clear argument to the Board of Directors to justify the promotion of the Chair Recommendation.

    The Board of Directors will consider all Chair Recommendations and vote to promote each recommended submission to nominee status. A majority vote from the Board of Directors will be necessary to promote each Chair Recommendation to the field of nominees.

    If any Board member or officer has a working contribution to any Chair Recommendation, he or she must identify that fact and excuse themselves from the vote and leave the room until after the vote is taken. The vote must then be tabulated by secret ballot.

    For a Feature Film to be considered for Chair Recommendation, the Feature Film must have completed an awards entry submission including supporting documentation and have been present on the General Membership Nomination Round ballot.

  7. The MPSE reserves the right to disqualify any nomination or award determined to be ineligible within one year of the Golden Reel Awards presentation. In the event that an award is revoked, the remaining eligible nominee with the highest number of votes will receive the award.

  8. A maximum of eight (8) trophies can be awarded at the Golden Reel Awards ceremony. For winning crews that exceed eight (8) editors, additional trophies may be purchased.

  9. Should the submitter wish to contest qualifying crew size, s/he may submit a request to the MPSE office for exception to be considered by the Board.

  10. A single entry cannot be submitted for consideration of the same discipline in multiple categories. I.e. a Foreign Language Feature Documentary may be submitted in Foreign Language Feature or Feature Documentary, but not both categories as both categories consider the same disciplines of sound editorial.

  11. Submissions of different episodes from the same series are only allowed if submitted by different crews under a different supervisor. This rule affects all Broadcast Media categories, including Live Action Under 35:00, all Episodic Short Form, and all Episodic Long Form categories. In the event that different episodes from the same series qualify in different categories, the submissions will only be eligible for consideration if the work adheres to this rule.

  12. Localization work will not be considered for any awards category.

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