Oscars Predictions: Original Song – Don’t Pass on the Chance for N.T. Rama Rao Jr. and Ram Charan Teja to Perform on the Dolby Stage for ‘RRR’

Variety Awards Circuit section is the home for all awards news and related content throughout the year, featuring the following: the official predictions for the upcoming Oscars, Emmys, Grammys and Tony awards ceremonies, curated by Variety senior awards editor Clayton Davis. The prediction pages are Davis’ assessment of the current standings of the race and do not reflect personal preferences for any film or performance. Like any organization or body that votes, each individual category is fluid and subject to change. Predictions are updated every Thursday.

LAST UPDATED: Dec. 22, 2022

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2023 Oscars Predictions: Best Original Song

Rihanna - Wakanda Forever
Rihanna

CATEGORY COMMENTARY: Fifteen songs remain from the 82 that were in the mix for best original song.

The big music stars are here to help with ratings if the Academy feels inclined to lean into it. We have Lady Gaga, Taylor Swift, Rihanna, Drake, Jazmine Sullivan and Selena Gomez, with inventive selections like the team behind “Naatu Naatu” from “RRR.”

In the case of S.S. Rajamouli’s Tollywood epic, seeing its two leads N.T. Rama Rao Jr. and Ram Charan Teja performing the iconic dance sequence on the stage would likely throw the ceremony (and the ratings) into a new stratosphere of global entertainment. Please don’t pass this up Academy.

With these many superstars in the running, someone big is bound to miss. Rita Wilson and Diane Warren have immense support within the branch, representing the conventional choices and leaving room for inspired selections such as pop stars. Warren is coming off a killer speech at the Governors Awards where she was awarded an Honorary Oscar, giving momentum to her track from “Tell It Like a Woman.”

Wilson, who is also a producer of the film with her husband, two-time Oscar winner Tom Hanks (“Philadelphia” and “Forrest Gum”), has been working the campaign trail. The husband and wife could be one of the newest married couples to garner awards attention, which in recent years has given us power couples like Javier Bardem and Penelope Cruz.

Worth mentioning the few snubs from the shortlist including Billie Eilish and Finneas (“Nobody Like U” from “Turning Red”) and Joe Jonas (“Not Alone” from “Devotion”). I also wish Billy Eichner’s collaboration with Marc Shaiman on “Love is Not Love” from “Bros.”

See the latest film predictions, in all 23 categories, in one place on Variety’s Oscars Collective. To see the ranked predictions for each individual category, visit Variety’s Oscars Hub.

See the 2022-2023 Awards Season calendar for all key dates and timelines.

ALL AWARDS CONTENDERS AND RANKINGS:

Diane Warren
Credit: Nick Spanos
Diane Warren Credit: Nick Spanos

And The Predicted Nominees Are:

Rank

Film

Song Title

Distributor

1

“Black Panther: Wakanda Forever”

“Lift Me Up” by Tems, Ludwig Göransson, Rihanna and Ryan Coogler

Marvel Studios

The nation of Wakanda is pitted against intervening world powers as they mourn the loss of their king T’Challa.

2

“RRR”

“Naatu Naatu” by Kala Bhairava, M. M. Keeravani, Rahul Sipligunj

Variance Films

A fictitious story about two legendary revolutionaries and their journey away from home before they stLofty Sky Distributiond fighting for their country in the 1920s.

3

“Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio”

“Ciao Papa” by Alexandre Desplat, Roeban Katz and Guillermo del Toro

Netflix

A darker version of the classic children’s fairy tale of a wooden puppet that transforms into a real living boy.

4

“Tell It Like a Woman”

“Applause” by Diane Warren

Samuel Goldwyn Films

Stories of women, both in front of and behind the camera.

5

“A Man Called Otto”

“Til You’re Home” by Rita Wilson

Sony Pictures

Otto is a grump who’s given up on life following the loss of his wife and wants to end it all. When a young family moves in nearby, he meets his match in quick-witted Marisol, leading to a friendship that will turn his world around.

Next in Line

6

“Top Gun: Maverick”

“Hold My Hand” by Lady Gaga and Bloodpop

Paramount Pictures

After thirty years, Maverick is still pushing the envelope as a top naval aviator, but must confront ghosts of his past when he leads TOP GUN’s elite graduates on a mission that demands the ultimate sacrifice from those chosen to fly it.

7

“Everything Everywhere All at Once”

“This is a Life” by David Byrne, Ryan Lott and Mitski

A24

An aging Chinese immigrant is swept up in an insane adventure, in which she alone can save the world by exploring other universes connecting with the lives she could have led.

8

“Where the Crawdads Sing”

“Carolina” by Taylor Swift

Sony Pictures

A woman who raised herself in the marshes of the Deep South becomes a suspect in the murder of a man with whom she was once involved.

9

“Spirited”

“Good Afternoon” by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul

Apple Original Films

A musical version of Charles Dickens’s story of a miserly misanthrope who is taken on a magical journey.

10

“Till”

“Stand Up” by Jazmine Sullivan and D’Mile

Orion/United Artists Releasing

In 1955, after Emmett Till is murdered in a brutal lynching, his mother vows to expose the racism behind the attack while working to have those involved brought to justice.

Other Top-Tier Contenders

11

“White Noise”

“New Body Rhumba” by LCD Soundsystem

Netflix

12

“Avatar: The Way of Water”

“Nothing Is Lost (You Give Me Strength)” by The Weeknd

20th Century Studios

13

“The Voice of Dust and Ash”

“Dust & Ash” by J. Ralph

Matilda Productions

14

“Selena Gomez: My Mind and Me”

“My Mind and Me” by Selena Gomez

Apple Original Films

15

“Amsterdam”

“Time” by Drake, Giveon Evans, Jahaan Akil Sweet and Daniel Pemberton

20th Century Studios

2023 Academy Awards Predictions

BEST PICTURE | DIRECTOR | ACTOR | ACTRESS | SUPPORTING ACTOR | SUPPORTING ACTRESS | ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY | ADAPTED SCREENPLAY | ANIMATED FEATURE | PRODUCTION DESIGN | CINEMATOGRAPHY | COSTUME DESIGN | FILM EDITING | MAKEUP AND HAIRSTYLING | SOUND | VISUAL EFFECTS | ORIGINAL SCORE | ORIGINAL SONG | DOCUMENTARY FEATURE | INTERNATIONAL FEATURE | ANIMATED SHORT | DOCUMENTARY SHORT | LIVE ACTION SHORT

The 95th Oscars ceremony will be held at the Dolby Theatre and televised live on ABC on Sunday, March 12, 2023.

2022 category winner: “No Time to Die” by Billie Eilish and Finneas from “No Time to Die” (MGM/United Artists Releasing)

About Variety Awards Circuit:

Variety’s unmatched coverage gives its readership unbeatable exposure in print and online and provides inside reports on all the contenders in this year’s awards season races. In addition to predictions, the section includes — Awards Circuit Column, a weekly analysis dissecting the trends and contenders in the race; Awards Circuit Podcast, a weekly series featuring interviews with the top contenders in the awards race and an expert roundtable discussion with Variety’s leading editors and columnists; Awards Circuit Predictions Video Series, a deep dive into specific categories, led by the leading pundits.

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