Coen brothers' song ineligible for Oscar nomination


Despite nominations from the Broadcast Film Critics Association and the Golden Globes, the peppy tune "Please Mr. Kennedy" from Joel and Ethan Coen's indie folk tale "Inside Llewyn Davis" won't be among the songs competing for an Oscar nomination.

Hitfix reports that due to strict requirements by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences (AMPAS), the song was not included on the list of 75 songs competing for Oscar nominations next month.

According to Billboard, the song was too derivative of other folk songs from the 1960s and therefore was not eligible.

A song about the space race in the early 1960s, "Please Mr. Kennedy" lists six co-writers, including the Coen brothers, "Llewyn Davis" co-star Justin Timberlake and the film's music supervisor, Joseph Henry "T Bone" Burnett.

In an email, Burnett told me that the songwriters weren't snubbed by the Academy. In fact, he said, the song wasn't even submitted for consideration because they knew it would be ineligible.

In the film, the tune is performed by Timberlake, Adam Driver and Oscar Isaac, who plays Llewyn Davis.

Talking with Hitfix, Burnett didn't appear to be too bothered by the song being absent from the list.

"When we started this film, it wasn't like we said, 'Let's write one to make sure we have something for the Academy,'" Burnett told the entertainment news website.

Vanity Fair writer Katey Rich wasn't afraid to express her disdain for the absence of "Please Mr. Kennedy," as evidenced in the title of her article – "75 Songs Qualify for the Best Original Song Oscar, Except For The Actual Best One."

The Hollywood Reporter has a complete list of the songs eligible for an Oscar nomination. The nominations for the 86th annual Academy Awards will be announced Jan. 16.

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