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Oscar continues to change the best original song rules
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences are making more changes for the upcoming 82nd Oscars. First it was increasing the number of best picture nominees from the longstanding five to 10. Friday, they took aim at making the best original song category even tougher than it already is.
A few years ago, the Academy's music branch made the nominating committee watch all the submitted songs in context of the film. This ended up eliminating most closing credit songs, most of which end up being popular radio favorites. The Music Branch Executive Committee now says that "if no song achieves a minimum average score of 8.25 in the nominations voting, there be no nominees and thus no Oscar presented for the category."
"If only one song achieves the required minimum, it and the song with the next highest score will be deemed the nominees. If two or more songs achieve the minimum score, they will be the nominees though no more than five nominees can be selected."
Previously, the rules dictated that there be no more than five but no fewer than three nominees in the category. This new rule means that only two songs could be nominated in a worse-case scenario. To say that would be embarrassing for both the music and movie industries is an understatement. Don't be surprised if they change the rule yet again a year from now.
[2009 best original song winner A.R. Rahman for "Jai Ho" from "Slumdog Millionaire."]