Next year’s Oscar ceremony could include a bittersweet honor for Chris Cornell — and another opportunity for Stevie Nicks to add to an already impressive collection of awards.
Cornell and Nicks are both among the 70 finalists vying for consideration in the Academy Awards’ list of Best Original Song nominees for the year. The Academy’s shortlist has been unveiled in advance of the Oscar polls opening on Jan. 5; voting for members will last for a week, after which the nominations will be announced on Jan. 23.
In the meantime, voters are invited to consider Cornell’s “The Promise” — the final recording he released during his lifetime and a passion project for the Soundgarden singer, who was moved to contribute the song after being inspired by the real-life story behind the movie of the same name, which dramatizes a love triangle against the backdrop of the Armenian genocide.
“I married into a Greek family and I’ve heard stories about my wife’s grandparents, who were actually refugees, as little kids, from the same conflict,” Cornell said in an interview before his death earlier this year. “So, it was partly that, and partly just the idea of being able to write a song for a film that has some emotional weight to it and some historical significance, especially on the denial side of it. In a strange way, denial can almost keep an instance like this alive, with the way that we communicate now. It’s a conflict that exists today because the denial exists.”
Nicks, meanwhile, made the shortlist thanks to “Your Hand I Will Never Let It Go,” a song she contributed to the soundtrack for Colin Trevorrow’s The Book of Henry. Like The Promise, The Book of Henry didn’t fare particularly well with critics or audiences, but it marks one of a couple studio projects Nicks made time for this year while touring behind her 24 Karat Gold solo album and booking a handful of appearances with Fleetwood Mac.
The 2018 Oscars are scheduled to be held March 4 in Los Angeles, with the ceremony telecast live on ABC.