The Academy Awards nominations have been announced for 2012 and amongst the long boring list of films you’ll probably never see is a nod to one half of Flight Of The Conchords, Bret McKenzie, in the Best Original Song category for his work on the new Muppets film
McKenzie wrote two songs for the movie which is out at Aussie cinemas at the moment, ‘Life’s A Happy Song’ and ‘Man or Muppet’, the later of which he received the nomination. Bizarrely he is up against only one other track for the Oscar, ‘Real In Rio’ from the film Rio, despite the original longlist for the award featuring 39 different songs.
People might want to start looking for Elton John’s head too, the famous songwriter was miffed when he lost to Madonna at the Golden Globes recently, so missing out even on a nomination has probably blown his top off. His duet with Lady Gaga, ‘Hello Hello’ from Gnomeo and Juliet was on the long list, as was Zooey Deschanel’s ‘So Long’ from Winnie the Pooh and Robbie Williams and Brad Paisley’s duet ‘Collision of Worlds’ from Cars 2.
Talking to MTV in New Zealand, McKenzie said he was very proud of the earnest ballad but never expected to be recognized for anything. “We’re celebrating with breakfast,” he said. “I woke up to the phone ringing nonstop, so then I picked up my phone and saw the news. I was very excited. I don’t sound it, but I am very excited. It’s a great day.”
“I was amazed there were only two nominees; I was surprised. It seems unusual, but it’s great because the odds are 50-50,” he said. “The only thing I guess would be better if there was only one nomination.”
Talking about recording the track McKenzie explained “I really wanted it to be hilarious and beautiful, and I feel like we got that combination. It’s sincere but ridiculous. The idea of children singing the song at school cracks me up.”
He also reveals an oracle like prediction from Jason Segel who wrote the new Muppets film. “The night we recorded ‘Man or Muppet,’ we had a few drinks and Jason Segel was predicting we’d get together at the Oscars, but he was joking,” McKenzie recalled. “[Maybe] that guy can see the future.”
The song is due to be performed during the 84th annual awards ceremony but McKenzie has no idea yet what form the performance will take or who will be involved. “I don’t know yet [how the song will be performed] but I was thinking we’ll definitely need a man and a Muppet,” McKenzie joked. “Yeah, that’s what we need.”
The 84th annual Academy Awards takes place on February 26.