Sony/ATV Honcho Martin Bandier Also Wants Tune Reforms For Oscars

bandierEarlier, this afternoon, Bruce Broughton had his say about the rescinding of the Oscar nomination for the title song from Alone Yet Not Alone. Here’s another side of the story, in a letter Deadline obtained that was sent to the Academy by Martin M. Bandier, the influential chairman of Sony/ATV Music Publishing. Like Broughton, he also is calling for changes in the Best Song category, but he specifically has a beef with the rule that doesn’t provide for another nominee to replace one that might be nixed, as happened this year. There certainly were  other songs that warranted inclusion, and the one that I thought the category missed most was Lana Del Rey’s haunting “Young and Beautiful,” which added so much to the courtship seen between Gatsby and Daisy in Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby. There were others, too. Bandier sent the letter to AMPAS chief Cheryl Boone Isaacs, and it won’t be surprising if she spend some energy looking hard at this, but it seemed relevant enough right now to air it here. Read the letter below:

Cheryl Boone Isaacs and members of the Academy
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
8949 Wilshire Boulevard
Beverly Hills, CA 90211

Dear Ms. Isaacs,

As Chairman and CEO of Sony/ATV Music Publishing, the world’s largest music publisher, and someone who has long been a songwriter advocate, I feel it is my duty to encourage recognition of songwriters and act as a champion for their fair treatment. Obviously many people have had much to say about the recent disqualification of the 5 best song nominee. That is neither my area nor my argument. However, as an organization whose name celebrates the arts, it is heartbreaking to know that your rules do not allow for the next best artists to be celebrated in the case of a disqualification. On behalf of the thousands of songwriters on our roster, as well as all songwriters across the globe, I would like to formally petition for change in rule to the Best Original Song category (rule 5.7).

The film and music industries are integral in each other’s success. As evidenced by the tributes, musical performances and accompaniments that were featured during the 2013 Academy Awards® ceremony, the film industry is an organization that values music’s contribution to the art form and its ability to help shape a scene. From “The Wizard of Oz” and “Meet Me in St. Louis” to “Singing in the Rain” and “Frozen” to the theme songs from “Rocky” and the James Bond movies, music is deeply rooted in a film’s influence and continues to breathe life into it once it is out of theatres. After such a display of appreciation for music last year, it is disheartening to see the Academy, a body that prides itself on fairness, close the door on a possible Oscar® contender for Best Original Song.

Throughout its 86 years, the Academy has made amendments to rules that were outdated or unfair. Most recently, the Academy attested to the importance of review by updating regulations across award categories , including Best Picture, Best Foreign Language Film and Best Documentary Feature.

As with many other American institutions, from the President of the United States to Miss America, the next-in-line or successor is crucial to ensuring that a fair chance is given. We ask that the Academy exercise a similar level of fairness and extend the opportunity for recognition to another deserving songwriter impacting the industry.

I strongly encourage you to, once again, reevaluate the rules in place, specifically 5.7, and give other songwriters the chance to share their voice.


Martin N. Bandier
Chairman & CEO
Sony/ATV Music Publishing

  1. Here it is, you play the young and beautiful, so they think, and all lonely, single bachelors in Hollywood such as Leo, Jude Law, P Diddy, and studio executives who are looking for real romance and great sex in their lives just bring a SI model as their date to the event, who knows maybe they’ll be discovered and become a big movie star, they certainly have the drive and ambitions for it……willing to do anything and all…..All SI models as the famous stars’ dates, accompanied by the song young and beautiful is so appropriate.
    My favorite TV show would be Buffy The Vampires Slayer………….any males who promote vampire females would make them demons themselves.
    Right now US has ” death energy ” leading them, so they tend to promote what is not good for humans. Gold diggers, ambitious whores as such .
    Oscar is a fun, partying event, live it up.
    Slaying ” vampires ” help to protect others from being their prey. Wouldn’t you like to be the Saints, Saints slay demons, such as Saint Michael after witnessing demons killed disciples and the Holy.

  2. Here’s an ignorance. Martin Bandier writing to Cheryl Boone Issacs with platitudes about film and music without acknowledging her incredibly pivotal role promoting film and film music while working in the industry, particularly at Paramount when it distributed and produced Flashdance, Beverly Hills Cop, Pretty in Pink, Footloose, Top Gun and on and on creating the modern soundtrack and the modern film musical. Bandier bought the Paramount catalog (Famous Music) that Ms. Issacs helped build. Bandier’s contribution is simply to collect the money off of the music rights – – which is why he wants more music nominated. The Oscar telecast performance of a single song from his catalogs because of the resulting world wide transmission in a featured performance is big bucks to music publishers. If the song wins an Oscar, its bankable and worth a Swiss account.

  3. Martin Bandier is right. I agree that the Academy should have moved up whatever song received the next number of votes into the Nominated category. If a song is disqualified (for any reason), then move the next song up. If a rule change is required, then change the rules. Songwriters, composers, producers, engineers and musicians work very hard to do great work and feel fortunate to be recognized with an Oscar nomination. The voting members of the Academy should be doing everything they can to acknowledge the incredible partnership of music and film; to have only four songs nominated in a field of rich, varied and emotionally powerful songs is a true missed opportunity.

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