If you were scratching your head last February over why there were only two nominees in the Best Original Song category of the Academy Awards you weren’t the only one. There was a lot of questioning as to what quirk of the rules allowed such a low number of competing songs in the first place. And the Academy has heard these complaints and has moved to update the rules of the category so that now there will be a total of five nominees. Here is the pertinent section of the Academy’s press release issued last night with the announcement and the method for which those five nominees will be chosen.
The Board of Governors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has approved additional rules for the 85th Academy Awards. The most significant changes affect the Original Song category, in which there will now be five nominees.
During the nominations process, all voting members of the Music Branch will receive a Reminder List of works submitted in the category and a DVD copy of the song clips. Members will be asked to watch the clips and then vote in the order of their preference for not more than five achievements in the category. The five achievements receiving the highest number of votes will become the nominations for final voting for the award.
I have to say that this is a pretty good move on the Academy’s parts as this is one of the categories that tend to bring in viewers. Now if they could just perhaps reinsert the performances of the nominated songs back into the ceremony. (Yes, I’m still bummed we didn’t get a performance of “Man or Muppet” at this year’s show.)
The 85th Academy Awards will be presented on February 24, 2013.