Ahead of one of the film industry's biggest nights, here’s a breakdown of everything you need to know about this year's Oscars

By Jodi Guglielmi Mike Miller
March 03, 2018 11:00 AM

Get ready movie lovers, the 90th annual Academy Awards are just days away!

Ahead of one of the film industry’s biggest night, here’s a breakdown of everything you need to know about this year’s show — and whether to expect another Envelopegate!

When Are the Oscars?

The 90th Oscars will be held on Sunday, March 4, 2018, at the Dolby Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center in Hollywood, and will be broadcast live on the ABC Television Network at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT, with a preshow starting at 6:30pm ET/3:3opm PT.

Watch People & Entertainment Weekly Red Carpet Live this Sunday, March 4 at 5pm ET/2pm PT. Download the PeopleTV app on your favorite mobile or connected TV device, or stream the show on People.com, EW.com, Twitter, Facebook Live and YouTube Live.

Who’s Hosting?

Jimmy Kimmel is returning to host the ceremony for the second year in a row. He famously hosted the ceremony last year, when the wrong film was announced as the Best Picture winner.

“I’ve seen the ‘envelope moment’ like 30 times,” Kimmel told PEOPLE of the wild ending to the night. “It totally came out of the blue and became something I will probably be asked about for the rest of my life.”

What’s Nominated?

Guillermo del Toro’s amphibian love story The Shape of Water leads the pack with a whopping 13 nominations, including Best Picture, Best Actor and Actress for Richard Jenkins and Sally Hawkins, respectively.

Dunkirk follows close behind in second place, with eight nominations — including Best Picture and Best Director. Fan favorites Get Out and Lady Bird also scored big, with five nominations each.

And after sparking controversy in past years, this year’s Oscars produced a diverse crop of nominees. A number of high-profile performances and films featuring actors of color have been recognized for top honors, including Denzel Washington, Spencer, Daniel Kaluuya, Mary J. Blige and Jordan Peele.

Be sure to check out PEOPLE’s full Academy Awards coverage to get the latest news on Hollywood’s big night.

Carlo Allegri/Getty

Who’s Performing?

Mary J. BligeGael García Bernal and Common will be among the performers entertaining guests and millions of viewers during the ceremony.

Those stars, along with Andra Day, Natalia LaFourcade, Miguel, Keala Settle and Sufjan Stevens, will perform this year’s nominated songs.

Bernal, LaFourcade and Miguel will perform “Remember Me” from the hit animated film Coco, while Blige is set to perform “Mighty River” from Netflix’s Mudbound.

Common will be teaming up with Andra Day to perform his song “Stand Up For Something” from Marshall, Settle will perform “This Is Me” from The Greatest Showman and Stevens will play “Mystery of Love,” written for Call My By Your Name.

RELATED VIDEO: Jimmy Kimmel Reveals What He Was Really Thinking During Last Year’s Oscar Envelopegate

How Will the Oscars Prevent Another Envelopegate?

The accounting firm behind the Oscars has put new safeguards in place to help avoid another Envelopegate at this year’s ceremony. PricewaterhouseCoopers spent the past year developing new protocols to prevent potential mishaps.

Along with having two balloting partners stationed on either side of the stage during the ceremony, a third partner will sit with Oscar producers in the show’s control room. This person will not only have their own copies of the envelopes being handed out, but they will also have the list of winners memorized. This way, should anything go wrong, they can act quickly.

And the two PricewaterhouseCoopers accountants responsible for the epic best picture flub have been replaced for this year’s show.

This year, cellphones will also be strictly prohibited.

Is There a Theme?

“Since it’s the 90th (anniversary), we’re really taking a moment to look back and reflect on the amazing 90 years of movies, as well as looking forward at what’s to come in the celebration of film,” Oscars producer Jennifer Todd told PEOPLE.

The show will include additional clip reels to honor film legends.

“One of the ways the show will honor the anniversary is to show clip reels with certain themes and we’re also trying to put as many living legends on the stage as possible at different points in the show to honor the legacy. The anniversary theme is a big theme for us,” says Oscars producer Mike De Luca. “There’s also an effort to thank the moviegoer and have gratitude also be a thematic part of the show, all tying into 90 years of people going to the movies.”

RELATED: James Franco Out! Greta Gerwig In! Biggest Surprises and Snubs of 2018 Oscar Nominations

A rendering of the 2018 Oscars stage.
Courtesy of Swarovski and Derek McLane

Emmy-award winning set designer Derek McLane told PEOPLE the anniversary will also be reflected in the set design. “It’s the 90th anniversary, so this year our sets are reflecting a lot of different eras,” he said.

“We wanted to celebrate the long history of filmmaking,” McLane added. “But mostly the different eras are presented in a relatively abstract way, we’re not super specific about these things.”

Will Time’s Up Have a Presence?

Producers have told PEOPLE the show will have a “moment” to honor the initiative fighting sexual harassment, and Kimmel has confirmed that he would be discussing the #MeToo movement during the broadcast.

“It’ll be a part of the show,” Kimmel told Variety. And when Vanity Fair asked if he planned to include “questions or bits that address Time’s Up,” he answered, “I do, yes.”

But Kimmel also told ABC News on Thursday that the topic would not dominate the ceremony. “This show is not about reliving people’s sexual assaults — it’s an awards show for people who have been dreaming about maybe winning an Oscar for their whole lives,” he said. “The last thing I want to do is ruin that for someone who is, you know, nominated for, you know, best leading actress or best supporting or best director or cinematographer or whatever, by making it unpleasant.”

He added that he could not “stop any bad behavior with my jokes.”

Stars wearing black at the 2018 Golden Globes.

Will Guests Dress in Black?

As for fashion statements, stars will not be dressed in all black to show solidarity with victims of sexual assault and harassment as they did at the Golden Globes.

Sources have said that Time’s Up is not asking attendees to wear all-black. Instead, wearing a Time’s Up lapel pin would be “appreciated,” according to the Times.

Celebrity stylist Elizabeth Stewart —whose clients include Gal Gadot, Jessica Chastain, Viola Davis, Julia Roberts and more— told PEOPLE that she plans to add the pins to Oscar looks because “I am doing everything I can to support the Time’s Up movement.”

And Finally… Who Will Win?

There’s clear frontrunners in all major categories except for the one where it matters most — Best Picture. For the main award of the night, The Shape of Water and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri appear to be in a dead heat. While it’s truly anyone’s guess, and since the Academy will likely not be handing out two statues this year, we’ll pick The Shape of Water as the probable winner.

Frances McDormand’s powerhouse performance in Three Billboards is all but assured to score her her second Oscar following wins at the Golden Globes and SAG Awards.

Best Actor also seems to be a lock, with Gary Oldman’s transformative performance as Winston Churchill leading the charge by a mile. It would mark his first Oscar win.

Sam Rockwell and Frances McDormand in Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Merrick Morton

The Best Supporting Actress is similarly easy to bet on. I, Tonya‘s Allison Janney has dominated the competition all awards season, so expect the Emmy winner to be well rehearsed come Oscar night.

Laurie Metcalf in Lady Bird could potentially upset the notoriously unpredictable category. 

The category’s male counterpart is full of fantastic nominees like Willem Dafoe, Woody Harrelson and Christopher Plummer. But Sam Rockwell, who plays a racist cop in Three Billboards, has been leading the pack since winning a Golden Globe in January.

While Christopher Nolan looked like a shoo-in for Best Director earlier this year for the mesmerizing Dunkirk, Guillermo del Toro now has the edge for The Shape of Water. Neither of the directors, who have nine nominations between them, has ever won an Oscar.