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Academy Disqualifies Four Great Score Contenders

According to Variety, the scores for Black Swan, True Grit, The Kids Are Alright and The Fighter will not be eligible to compete this year. Clint Mansell‘s Black Swan score and Carter Burwell‘s True Grit score were disqualified attributed to a designation within Rule 16 of the Academy’s Special Rules for Music Awards (5d under “Eligibility”), which excludes “scores diluted by the use of tracked themes or other pre-existing music.” Meanwhile, the scores for The Kids Are All Right, also by Carter Burwell, and The Fighter, by Michael Brook, were deemed ineligible because the music is “diminished in impact by the predominant use of songs.”

Now while I understand that Mansell’s Black Swan was largely adapted from Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake, and Carter Burwell’s True Grit is mostly based on 19th century hymns, I don’t understand why the other two won’t qualify. Regardless if the scores to The Kids Are All Right and The Fighter play second fiddle to a heavy soundtrack, they are still original works and the voters should be allowed to decide based on the quality and not length of the score.

Looking back at our list of best scores from 2010, it seems the following five contenders have the best chance in being nominated and possibly winning:

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I

Tron: Legacy

Let Me In

The Social Network

Never Let Me Go


About Ricky Fernandes

Some people take my heart, others take my shoes, and some take me home. I write, I blog, I podcast and I edit. Host of several podcasts including Nxpress (Nintendo podcast), Game of Thrones and Walking Dead podcasts, as well as Sordid Cinema, and PopOptiq's expert on Horror and Nintendo.


  1. this definitely sucks since Black Swan is such an amazing score. The rules make valid points, but who says original art cannot be made from preexisting material? Also, how many movies are created from previous material, books, tv, original movies and still given full credit? Seems unfair.

  2. I guess inception is ineligible too, shame coz the score was one of it’s strongest points

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