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January 22, 2008
80th Annual Academy Award Nominations
Diverse scores and lyrical songs dominate the music categories by Marilee Bradford

James Newton Howard

James Newton Howard

Michael Giacchino

Michael Giacchino

HOLLYWOOD—The 80th Annual Academy Awards nominations were announced today at a business-as-usual press conference despite concerns that the ongoing Writers Guild strike may devastate the Awards broadcast at the end of the month.
Marco Beltrami

Marco Beltrami

This year's music nominations boast no surprises or underdogs per se, though anticipation is high since none of the Original Score nominees have yet to win the coveted statuette.

Seventh time may be a charm for six-time nominee James Newton Howard (two for song, four for score; last nominated in 2005 for The Village) with his predominently electronic underscore for Michael Clayton, while Marco Beltrami and Michael Giacchino (Emmy winner, Lost) received their first nominations – Beltrami for his stylized use of Old West instrumentation in 3:10 to Yuma and Giacchino for a delectable musical romp in Ratatouille.

Alberto Iglesias

Alberto Iglesias

Dario Marianelli

Dario Marianelli

Rounding out the list are two previous one-time Oscar score nominees, both from foreign soil: Alberto Iglesias from Spain (2006 nominee for The Constant Gardener) for his world music score to The Kite Runner and Dario Marianelli from Italy (2006 nominee for Pride & Prejudice) for his sensitive, classically styled score to Atonement.

Alan Menken

Alan Menken

Yesterday, it was learned that two of 2007's more notable underscores were deemed ineligible for nomination: Alan Menken's Enchanted, which is based substantially on songs; and Jonny Greenwood's There Will Be Blood for its dominant use of pre-existing music, written both by Greenwood and by other composers.

Multi-Oscar winners Menken and lyricist Stephen Schwartz dominate the song category with three nominations for their homage to classic Disney animated musicals, Enchanted. Three of the film's five original songs were submitted for Oscar consideration,
Stephen Schwartz

Stephen Schwartz

and all three were nominated: "Happy Working Song," "So Close" and "That's How You Know."

Marketa Irglova and Glen Hansard

Marketa Irglova and Glen Hansard

Also nominated were "Falling Slowly" from Once, with music and lyrics by the movie's lead actors Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova; and "Raise It Up" from August Rush (performed by 11-year-old musical talent Jamia Simone Nash and the Impact Repertory Theatre), for which the Academy has yet to designate the songwriter nominee(s).

Winners will be announced on the Oscar telecast, live from the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood Feb. 24 on ABC.

A complete list of music nominations follows.

Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original Score)
  • Dario Marianelli for Atonement (Focus Features)
  • Alberto Iglesias for The Kite Runner (DreamWorks, Sidney Kimmel Entertainment and Participant Productions, Distributed by Paramount Classics)
  • James Newton Howard for Michael Clayton (Warner Bros.)
  • Michael Giacchino for Ratatouille (Walt Disney)
  • Marco Beltrami for 3:10 to Yuma (Lionsgate)
Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original Song)
  • "Falling Slowly" from Once (Fox Searchlight) Music and Lyric by Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova
  • "Happy Working Song" from Enchanted (Walt Disney) Music by Alan Menken, Lyric by Stephen Schwartz
  • "Raise It Up" from August Rush (Warner Bros.) Nominees to be determined
  • "So Close" from Enchanted (Walt Disney) Music by Alan Menken, Lyric by Stephen Schwartz
  • "That's How You Know" from Enchanted (Walt Disney) Music by Alan Menken, Lyric by Stephen Schwartz
©2008 Marilee Bradford
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