Today the academy released the, uh, disparate list of 42 tracks eligible to be nominated for the best song Oscar. I hate this category. [Let's go back to 2004, when Annie Lennox's "Into the West" won over Micheal McKean and Annette O'Toole's "A Kiss at the End of the Rainbow." "West" played over the end credits of The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. "Kiss" was an integral part of A Mighty Wind; indeed, it provided one of the year's great memories -- Eugene Levy and Catherine O'Hara, excavating an old romance as aged folk singers. They did their own singing and playing, of course, and performed at the Oscars in character. And it's a beautiful song. This was the perfect opportunity to honor a deserving song from a movie about music, plus give an Oscar to a respected industry couple. But the Oscar went to exit music. This has happened countless times.]
Anyway, if anything, there should be an original song score Oscar, given to the composer of a set of songs for, say, an original movie musical (like A Mighty Wind). But whatever. The academy needs five hip artists to draw music lovers to the telecast (even though eradicating the category would shave 30 minutes off the show, thereby retaining more viewers). Here are the five I expect to be nominated, none of which are very hip:
"Dicholo," The Constant Gardener (performed by Oyub Ogada)
"Hustle & Flow (It Ain't Over)," Hustle & Flow (performed by Terrence Howard)
"In the Deep," Crash (by Bird York)
"There's Nothing Like a Show on Broadway," The Producers (by Mel Brooks)
"Travelin' Thru," Transamerica (by Dolly Parton)
It'll be Mel (who won a screenplay Oscar for the original Producers) against Dolly (whose last song nomination was in 1981).