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Lady Gaga will not perform her nominated song, “Hold My Hand” from Top Gun: Maverick, at the 95th Academy Awards, exec producer and showrunner Glenn Weiss confirmed Wednesday during a press conference in advance of Sunday’s telecast on ABC.
“We invited all five,” Weiss said of this year’s nominees for best song. The other four nominees have been confirmed for the show. “We have great relationship with Lady Gaga, but she is in the middle of shooting a movie,” said Weiss, referencing her work in Joker: Folie à Deux. “It didn’t feel like she could get a performance to the caliber that she is used to, so she isn’t going to perform at the show.”
The songs that will be performed during the telecast are “Applause” from Tell It Like a Woman, “Lift Me Up” from Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, “Naatu Naatu” from RRR and “This Is a Life” from Everything Everywhere All at Once.
Viewers also can expect to hear something about last year’s Slapgate when Jimmy Kimmel takes the stage at Hollywood’s Dolby Theatre to host the ceremony. Executive producer Molly McNearney told reporters, “We are going to address it and then we are going to move on.” Also expect a shake-up in the tradition of the actors receiving their Oscars from the previous year’s winners. Will Smith, who won best actor last year for King Richard, was banned from Academy events for 10 years for slapping presenter Chris Rock onstage.
Following last year’s widely criticized decision to present eight categories — including best score, film editing and sound — before the live telecast, with edited versions added to the telecast, executive producer and showrunner Ricky Kirshner asserted that “one of the themes [of this year’s show] is honoring the crafts. We are going to show what it takes [to make a movie] and honor the people [who do this work].”
The Academy had previously said that all of the categories would be presented live this year — addressing the outrage over the prior telecast — though little new information was provided about what these presentations would look like.
“We are going to really highlight the crafts,” Kirschner said, offering that at the end of most of the acts, a QR code will be posted, allowing viewers to access two- to three-minute videos “to meet the nominees in the category and learn a little bit more about who they are and what they do.”
As the Academy readies for Sunday’s Oscars, Weiss offered a nod to moviegoers returning to theaters in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Everything Everywhere All at Once goes into Sunday’s ceremony with 11 nominations, the most for a movie this year. It will compete for best picture alongside All Quiet on the Western Front, Avatar: The Way of Water, The Banshees of Inisherin, Elvis, The Fabelmans, Tár, Top Gun: Maverick, Triangle of Sadness and Women Talking.
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