by Nathaniel R
It's April which means April Foolish Oscar Predictions as we throw up the new Oscar charts. Today we're talking Sound Categories.
Dare we hope that last year's anomalous Original Score list, comprised of nearly all newcomers, happens again? We can hope it but it would be foolish to predict given that the music branch is notoriously insular and a lot of the big name composers have high profile films this year...
50 time nominee John Williams is doing Star Wars: The Last Jedi, 10 time nominee Hans Zimmer is doing Dunkirk, and 8 time nominee Alexandre Desplat is doing multiple films including Guillermo del Toro's Shape of Water. The thing this pundit is most curious about this year is whether 2 time nominee Johann Johannson, who was deemed ineligible for his amazing work on Arrival last season because too many pre-existing tracks were used, can hop back into the shortlist via either Blade Runner 2049 or Darren Aronofsky's mother!
P.S. In a possibly surprising about-face, freshly nominated composer Nicholas Britell (Moonlight) is actually scoring the sports bio Battle of the Sexes. Can't wait to hear it!
The big story this year might be whether or not Pasek & Paul, the songwriting duo who roared to fame last year with the one-two punch of Dear Evan Hansen on stage and La La Land in movie theaters can do an Oscar repeat with their songs from the new Hugh Jackman musical The Greatest Showman. That's the only story really at this early stage but it generally takes a long while before we know the eligible options in this category. Have you heard any rumors as to which movies might have original songs?
SOUND MIXING and SOUND EDITING
Because there are two sound categories, sound technicians tend to ring up high nomination tallies. Last season Kevin O'Connell finally won the Oscar (for Hacksaw Ridge) on his 21st nomination. The other most prominent 'always a bridesmaid' Greg P Russell had his 17th nomination (for 13 Hours) revoked due to telephone campaigning. They both could be back again this year (though I'm not banking on it) since O'Connell is mixing Spider-Man: Homecoming and Russell is doing Transformers: The Last Knight. But my guess is newer franchises, Best Picture contenders, musicals, and war films will be the usual preferred flavors.