The Songwriters Hall of Fame is presenting a virtual event, “A Conversation With 2021 Oscar Nominated Songwriters for Best Original Song,” on Tuesday at 4 p.m. PT. All five songs nominated for the award will be represented. At press time, nine of the 12 nominated songwriters were slated to participate.
The event will be co-hosted and moderated by Songwriters Hall of Fame chairman Nile Rodgers and Paul Williams, who won the 1976 Oscar for best original song for co-writing “Evergreen (Love Theme From A Star Is Born).”
Nominees participating are Dernst “D’Mile” Emile II and Tiara Thomas, co-writers of “Fight for You” from Judas and the Black Messiah; Daniel Pemberton, co-writer of “Hear My Voice” from The Trial of the Chicago 7; Savan Kotecha and Fat Max Gsus, co-writers of “Husavik” from Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga; Diane Warren and Laura Pausini, co-writers of “IO SÌ (SEEN)” from The Life Ahead (La Vita Davanti a Se); and Leslie Odom Jr. and Sam Ashworth, co-writers of “Speak Now” from One Night in Miami.
H.E.R., Celeste Waite and Rickard Göransson, who were also co-writers of the first three songs listed above, respectively, are not currently slated to appear.
Williams is a three-time nominee for the best original song Oscar. Notably, the lyricist collaborated with a different composer on all three songs. He teamed with John Williams to write “Nice to Be Around” from Cinderella Liberty (1973), with Barbra Streisand to write “Evergreen (Love Theme From A Star Is Born)” (1976) and with Kenny Ascher to write “The Rainbow Connection” from The Muppet Movie (1979). The latter song didn’t win — the award went to the little-remembered “It Goes Like It Goes” from Norma Rae — but its stature seems to grow with every passing year.
Williams, Warren and Rodgers are all SHOF inductees. Williams and Warren were inducted in 2001; Rodgers in 2016. Williams is slated to receive the SHOF’s top honor, the Johnny Mercer Award, at their next gala, set for June 2022. He was originally set to receive the award in June 2020, but a global pandemic pushed the presentation back two years.