It looks like the Academy has found some sense and reversed their decision to disqualify The Dark Knight score. Hans Zimmer and James Newton Howard, who collaborated to bring the tense anthem of The Joker, will now be able to compete in the "Best Original Score" category.
The news comes after just one month of ruling the score ineligible, citing too many composers on the cue sheet. When the Los Angeles Times spoke to the Academy's executive director Bruce Davis a week prior, he said the Academy's music branch:
"sees this as an award, like cinematography or directing, where you want to award a single creator. This isn't like visual effects. Except for extraordinary circumstances, it's an award that should go to one person."
This decision has apparently been reversed, and yes, these are extraordinary circumstances.
Having watched The Dark Knight again, on Blu-Ray, I stand behind my original sentiments. There hasn't been anything recently that evokes emotions like this soundtrack. It's a roller coaster, taking the high points-higher and the dark points-chilling. It thrills me to hear that this has a chance to receive all the credit it deserves.
The L.A. Times reports an Academy press release "saying its music branch executive committee voted to change the decision last Friday." If it's nominated, we'll see if all five composers accept the award on February 22.
Whether or not this was influenced by The Dark Knight and Iron Man's Grammy nominations is unlikely; but nevertheless, both scores were recognized by The Recording Academy in the category of "Best Score Soundtrack Album for Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media." Ramin Djawadi's Iron Man score joins Zimmer/Howard against John William's Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, Jonny Greenwood's There Will Be Blood, and Thomas Newman's Wall-E. The award is given for "an original score created specifically for, or as a companion to, a current legitimate motion picture, television show or series or other visual media." The 51st Annual Grammy Awards air February 8, 2009, tune in to see if Iron Man is more musically inclined than The Dark Knight.
I'd take The Dark Knight over Iron Man, what about you?
Source: The L.A. Times, Grammy Awards