After being relegated to an Oscar pre-show last year, the nominees for best original song will be back on the main telecast this year. Or, rather, four of them will.
Beyoncé will perform “Be Alive” from King Richard, Billie Eilish and FINNEAS will perform “No Time to Die” from the film of the same name, Reba McEntire will perform “Somehow You Do” from Four Good Days; and Sebastián Yatra will perform “Dos Oruguitas” from Encanto. According to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, Van Morrison was invited to perform his nominated “Down to Joy” from Belfast, but wasn’t able to make it.
This will be Yatra’s first performance on the Oscar telecast, but these other performers are Oscar show veterans.
Eilish and FINNEAS performed The Beatles’ “Yesterday” for the In Memoriam segment two years ago.
McEntire performed the nominated “I’m Checkin’ Out” from Postcards From the Edge on the telecast in 1991.
Beyoncé has performed on the show on three prior occasions. On the 2005 telecast, she performed three of the five best original song nominees — “Learn to Be Lonely” from The Phantom of the Opera, “Believe” from The Polar Express (performed with Josh Groban) and “Vois sur ton chemin (Look to Your Path)” from The Chorus (performed with American Boychoir).
In 2007, she sang three nominated songs from Dreamgirls alongside Jennifer Hudson, her co-star in that film, who won an Oscar for her performance. The two stars teamed to perform “Love You I Do” and “Listen” and were joined by Keith Robinson and Anika Noni Rose to perform “Patience.”
In 2009, she accompanied Oscar host Hugh Jackman and numerous other stars to sing a medley celebrating movie musicals. The other performers were Zac Efron, Vanessa Hudgens, Amanda Seyfried, Dominic Cooper and the USC Trojan Marching Band, also known as the Spirit of Troy.
According to a report first published in Variety, Beyoncé may perform “Be Alive” remotely from a tennis court in Compton, Calif. The location is where future tennis legends Venus and Serena practiced under the watchful eye of their father, Richard. Under one scenario, Will Smith, who plays the title role in King Richard, would appear on-site with Beyoncé and then head about 20 miles north to the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood in time for the announcement of the best actor category, a race in which he is a heavy favorite to win.
According to an Academy statement: “Van Morrison was invited to perform his nominated song but will not attend the Oscars due to his tour schedule, therefore ‘Down to Joy’ from Belfast will not be performed on the broadcast.”
In addition to these nominated songs, the Oscar telecast will feature the first live performance of “We Don’t Talk About Bruno,” the smash hit from Encanto.
CODA, which won the top award at both the Producers Guild of America Awards and the Screen Actors Guild Awards, is now considered the front-runner in a tight race for best picture. The Oscars are making efforts to make the show accessible to deaf and hearing-impaired individuals. The Academy notes: American Sign Language (ASL) provided by certified deaf interpreters, live closed captioning and audio description will be available during the live broadcast.
The 94th Oscars, produced by Will Packer and Shayla Cowan, will be held on Sunday, March 27, at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood. The show will be televised live on ABC at 8 p.m. EDT/5 p.m. PDT and in more than 200 territories worldwide.