The Academy released its annual shortlists Tuesday ahead of the formal nominations, and Beyonce, Jay-Z, and Ariana Grande are all in the race for best original song, while French shocker Titane did not make the shortlist for best foreign film.
Beyonce’s ballad Be Alive, written for the tennis drama King Richard, about Serena and Venus Williams’ father (played by Will Smith), was among a list of 15 songs that will be narrowed down to a final five before the Oscars in March. Her husband Jay-Z, who produced Netflix Western The Harder They Fall and collaborated with Kid Cudi on the film’s single Guns Go Bang, will compete against her.
In the parody Don’t Look Up, Ariana Grande’s pop star character sings the song Just Look Up to persuade the people to take seriously the approaching threat of a comet crashing into Earth. The 007 theme song — No Time To Die — by Billie Eilish was also included on the list.
So did Dos Oruguitas from Disney’s animated feature Encanto, a song written by “Hamilton” creator Lin-Manuel Miranda, who only needs an Oscar to complete the coveted EGOT (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony) collection of accolades.
From a pool of 92 films, fifteen nominees for the Academy Award for best international feature film were announced. A single film from each country is allowed to be submitted.
France has the most foreign cinema nominations of any country in Oscar history, but it will sit out this year after Julia Ducournau’s Palme d’Or-winning body-horror Titane did not make the cut.
The ultra-violent film about a female serial murderer who has sex with autos before convincing a firefighter that she is his long-lost son may have been too contentious for Academy voters.
The Hand of God (Italy) by Paolo Sorrentino and Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s Drive My Car (Japan), based on a Haruki Murakami short tale, are among the frontrunners on the shortlist.
With morality drama, A Hero, Iran’s Asghar Farhadi joins a rare group of auteurs who have won numerous foreign film Oscars previously with A Separation and The Salesman.
Lunana: A Yak in the Classroom, a humorous drama about a reluctant young teacher recruited to work in the world’s most secluded school, has brought Bhutan one step closer to its first Oscar nomination.
Flee, a film about a gay Afghan refugee’s difficult trip to Europe is another strong possibility for Denmark, which won the foreign film Oscar last year for Another Round.
The animated film was also named to the best documentary shortlist, which was announced on Tuesday.
Questlove’s Summer of Soul, about the massive but largely overlooked 1969 Harlem Black Woodstock celebration, and The Rescue, about the headline-grabbing 2018 race to save a Thai soccer team trapped in a cave, also made the list.
On February 8, the final list of Oscar nominations will be released, and the Oscars 2022 will be presented on March 27.
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