A battle of artistic degrees will conclude this weekend and most people have already chosen a winner. This battle is not so clear on the sides, and picking either one will ultimately decide who has more influence in the future of theatrical releases. The opposing forces are Pharrell William’s soothing Funk and R&B style versus the powerful vocals of Idina Menzel. The battle between “Happy” and “Let it go” will end at the 86th Academy Awards.
It has been clear for sometime that these two songs have already beaten most of the competition. While the other nominations for “Original Song” at the Oscars don’t lack creativity or passion, they pale in comparison to what Pharrell and the Lopez couple (Kristen Anderson and Robert) have created with their own respective outings. To further illustrate the contrasts in the participant’s power, a detailed tale of the tape must be looked over.
The song “Let it go” was first heard in the movie Frozen released on November 19 of last year. Frozen has the distinction of being a part of Disney’s computer animated movies “not made by Pixar” category. But even without the talents of Randy Newman, “Let it go” has gone on to create a media movement that even Pharrell has passively admitted to being intimidated by. The original song sung by Menzel on You Tube has acquired over 115 million views, and related media averages over two million; this is as close as universally admitting that yes, everyone does love this song.
Challenging Disney’s musical dominance is the spry but powerfully popular Pharrell Williams and his song “Happy”. Despicable Me 2 had the rare distinction of being better than its predecessor; William’s returning to create the music was a factor in the additional popularity of the film. This release however has Pharrell pulling out all the stops and making sure everyone gets their fair share of Happiness. Mimicking last year’s Oscar winner Adele, “Happy” is now a standard radio hit, being played every hour by all major music stations.
A single Oscar trophy will be given, and the winner will exemplify who holds sway in Academy music awards. Pharrell represents modern radio musicians who can safely cross over to theatrical features, regardless of genre, and achieve one of this country’s most prized awards in the arts. And Disney is representing the changing face of Hollywood that must take advantage of all media outlets in order to get their blockbusters to appeal to all demo graphs. Oscar parties be damned, there is no peace, the fight for Hollywood’s future music industry collides Sunday.