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Front-Runners and Star-Studded Lineup: Nominations and Performances at the 2023 Academy Awards

The Oscars, also known as the Academy Awards, is one of the most esteemed award ceremonies in the entertainment sector.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences hosts this annual event to honor the top movies, performers, directors, and technical accomplishments from the previous year. The 95th Academy Awards are coming up soon, and anticipation is palpable.

After last year’s contentious broadcast, which received flak for its pre-recorded presentation of eight categories, the Academy has declared that all 23 categories will be presented live at the occasion. After receiving criticism from professionals in the industry who believed that the pre-taped segments lessened the significance of the awards, this choice was made.

The Academy has additionally committed to keeping the broadcast under three hours, which has proven difficult in recent years due to the overwhelming number of categories and performances.

One of the most memorable moments at the 2022 Oscars was Will Smith slapping in front of host Chris Rock in a comedy skit. The moment was previously mentioned in a promotional video for this year’s ceremony, suggesting the Academy hasn’t shied away from the incident.  

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Academy Nominations and Lineups

The nominations for the 2023 Oscars were revealed on February 13, and there are several clear front-runners this year. 

“Belfast,” a drama directed by Kenneth Branagh, leads the pack with 13 nominations, including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Original Screenplay. Other films with multiple nominations include “Dune,” “West Side Story,” “The Power of the Dog,” and “Licorice Pizza.”

In addition to the awards themselves, the Oscars always feature a star-studded lineup of performances. This year’s ceremony will include musical performances by Lady Gaga, Ariana Grande, and Billie Eilish, among others. 

The presenters for each award category have not yet been announced, but past ceremonies have appearances by some of the biggest names in Hollywood.

Date, Place, and Channel

This year’s ceremony will occur on March 12, 2023, Sunday, at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT, at the Los Angeles Dolby Theatre at Ovation Hollywood. The event will air live on ABC and will also be available to stream on multiple platforms, including Hulu Live TV, YouTube TV, AT&T TV, and FuboTV.

If you are unable to watch the event live, you can still catch up on all the highlights by visiting ABC.com or using the ABC app and signing in with your cable provider. International viewers can also check the Academy’s website for local listings in their respective countries.

But the festivities don’t begin with the ceremony itself. There will be a pre-show and an official lead-in broadcast to get you in the mood for the Oscars. The pre-show event, On the Red Carpet Live: Countdown to Oscars 95, will be hosted by ABC News and will air from 1-4 p.m. ET/10 a.m.-1 p.m. PT on ABC. 

But it will still be available for streaming on the ABC News Live website from 1:30 p.m. EDT/10:30 a.m. PDT until the Oscars officially start.

Later in the day, Ashley Graham, Vanessa Hudgens, and Lilly Singh will host the Countdown to the Oscars lead-in show, starting at 6:30 p.m. ET/3:30 p.m. PT on ABC. This 90-minute special will showcase the nominees, performers, and presenters of the night and will give viewers a glimpse behind the scenes of the biggest night in Hollywood.

Jimmy Kimmel, who hosted the Oscars in 2017 and 2018 (the latter of which featured the infamous Moonlight/La La Land mix-up), will be returning as the host for this year’s ceremony.

“Being invited to host the Oscars for a third time is either a great honor or a trap,” the Jimmy Kimmel Live host stated. “Either way, I am grateful to the Academy for asking me so quickly after everyone good said no.”

Nominees and Presenters

One of the most significant changes to this year’s ceremony is the return of the live presentation of all 23 categories. This decision comes after last year’s decision to pre-tape eight competitive categories, which received backlash from industry professionals. 

Another notable change is the absence of a host for the evening, with Jimmy Kimmel taking on the role of presenting orders from Top Gun: Maverick actors Jon Hamm and Charles Parnell.

A24’s Everything Everywhere All at Once has bagged the highest number of nominations at the Academy Awards with 11 nods, followed closely by The Banshees of Inisherin and All Quiet on the Western Front, each scoring nine nominations. 

It is interesting to note that everyone in the Best Actor category, including Paul Mescal, Bill Nighy, Brendan Fraser, Colin Farrell, and Austin Butler, are first-time nominees.

The Oscars revealed its first round of presenters, which includes a star-studded lineup of Melissa McCarthy, Janelle Monáe, Riz Ahmed, Emily Blunt, Glenn Close, Jennifer Connelly, Ariana DeBose, Troy Kotsur, Jonathan Majors, Samuel L. Jackson, Dwayne Johnson, Michael B. Jordan, Deepika Padukone, Questlove, Zoe Saldaña, and Donnie Yen. Fans can expect more presenters to be announced as the ceremony approaches.

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Who’ll Perform? 

Rihanna, who recently wowed audiences with her halftime performance at the Super Bowl, will take the stage to perform “Lift Me Up” from Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. The song, which features on the movie’s soundtrack, is a powerful anthem that celebrates strength and perseverance.

David Byrne, Son Lux, and Stephanie Hsu will sing “This Is a Life” from Everything Everywhere All at Once, a multiversal movie that leads the pack with 11 nominations. Mitski, who originally performed the song, is unable to attend due to scheduling conflicts, but Hsu is sure to deliver a mesmerizing performance.

Actress and singer Sofia Carson will join forces with songwriter Diane Warren for a heartfelt rendition of “Applause” from Tell It Like a Woman. The song, which showcases Warren’s signature blend of pop and ballad, is a tribute to female empowerment and the power of perseverance.

The final song set to be performed is “Naatu Naatu” from RRR, a Telugu-language period action film. The track, which features vocals by Amit Trivedi and Anirudh Ravichander, is a catchy and upbeat number that celebrates the spirit of unity and collaboration.

Photo: US Magazine

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