Disney Animation is again faced with a challenging decision regarding which song from its forthcoming movie, Wish, should be nominated for an Academy Award. The selection must be made by November 1, well ahead of the movie’s November 22 premiere. This situation echoes the studio’s previous predicament with the 2022 Oscar contender Encanto. While the song Dos Oruguitas received a nomination, the unsubmitted but immensely popular track We Don’t Talk About Bruno did not, despite later topping the Billboard Hot 100 for five weeks.
The upcoming movie Wish, featuring the voice talents of Ariana DeBose and Chris Pine, unfolds the origin tale of Disney’s wishing star, marking the studio’s 100th year. With its release directed by Chris Buck and Fawn Veerasunthorn, the movie showcases songs penned by Grammy-nominee Julia Michaels.
Jennifer Lee, Disney Animation’s Chief Creative Officer and an executive producer for Wish shared with The Hollywood Reporter the complexities of choosing a song for Oscar consideration before the movie’s public release. With an early selection deadline and the movie’s late release, the studio is cautiously planning to release the soundtrack earlier to gauge public response, which could provide valuable insights for their decision-making process.
Recent reviews of Wish presented to the media highlighted its unique watercolour-styled CG animation, engaging original songs, and enthralling storyline, stirring anticipation for its official trailer release.
During a recent presentation, Disney Animation unveiled four songs from its upcoming movie Wish: Welcome to Rosas, the opening number introducing the Kingdom of Rosas; This Wish, Asha’s (voiced by Ariana DeBose) pivotal song where she expresses her desires; I’m a Star, a lively ensemble piece with animated singing animals; and This is the Thanks I Get, in which the villainous King Magnifico (voiced by Chris Pine) reveals his intentions.
Jennifer Lee, Chief Creative Officer of Disney Animation, informed The Hollywood Reporter that three additional songs, a reprise, and an end credits song by Julia Michaels are still under wraps. This includes a unique duet between DeBose and Pine’s characters, which she describes as a thrilling moment where the villain and protagonist briefly share a common understanding and emotions regarding wishes.
Despite the absence of a rule limiting the number of songs Disney can submit for Oscar consideration, the studio has recently opted to nominate only one song from each animated musical, a strategy to avoid vote splitting. However, there is ongoing discussion about whether multiple songs from Wish should be entered this year. Producer Peter Del Vecho admits that choosing just one standout song for nomination from the movie will be challenging.
In reflecting on the creation of Wish, Lee expressed her excitement about collaborating with Michaels, praising her love for Disney musicals and her collaborative spirit in the songwriting process. Producer Juan Pablo Reyes Lancaster-Jones also emphasized the movie’s appeal, noting the reintroduction of classic Disney elements like the ‘villain song’ and the ‘talking animals song’, promising elements that fans are sure to appreciate. Source