The Oscars doing their best to make sure you won't have to listen to any Muppets
As part of its continuing efforts to cut running time and potential for fun, the Oscars may have dropped the annual Best Original Song performances from this year’s telecast, thereby eliminating the possibility that viewers would have to sit through a performance from The Muppets when they could be listening to a nice acceptance speech, or watching a tribute montage to, say, people wearing eyeglasses in movies. The decision comes amid an Original Song category that's already been more controversial than most, as dozens of eligible tunes written by everyone from Elton John to Madonna to Mary J. Blige to Glenn Close were rejected for various arbitrary reasons, leaving only The Muppets’ “Man Or Muppet” and Rio’s “Real In Rio.”
Now Deadline reports that the telecast’s producers are considering essentially finishing the job by ensuring that no one—not Bret McKenzie, Jason Segel, and possibly a bunch of Muppets, nor Sergio Mendes and whoever among Rio’s voice cast wants to sing (though definitely not Jesse Eisenberg)—hijacks the stage and interrupts the grim solemnity of Billy Crystal’s routine with their spontaneity. Of course, the decision isn’t totally final, likely depending on if Randy Newman can write a pleasantly innocuous piano ballad they can nominate before then.