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Oscar News: Marc Shaiman Named Music Director

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood November 23, 2009 at 5:32AM

It's no surprise, given that composer Marc Shaiman worked with co-producer Adam Shankman on the musical Hairspray, that he will do the music director honors for the 82nd Academy Awards. Shankman cited Will Ferrell and Jack Black’s comedy numbers as examples of the hilarity that he hopes Shaiman will bring to the occasion: “He’s a genius! And he’d be the first to tell you!”
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Thompson on Hollywood

It's no surprise, given that composer Marc Shaiman worked with co-producer Adam Shankman on the musical Hairspray, that he will do the music director honors for the 82nd Academy Awards. Shankman cited Will Ferrell and Jack Black’s comedy numbers as examples of the hilarity that he hopes Shaiman will bring to the occasion: “He’s a genius! And he’d be the first to tell you!”

“With Marc on board, we are sure to have some great musical and, hopefully, hysterical moments,” said producer Bill Mechanic.

Shaiman has five Oscar nominations under his belt, for original score (The American President, The First Wives Club and Patch Adams) and original song (“A Wink and a Smile” from Sleepless in Seattle and for "Blame Canada" from South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut). Shaiman has also been nominated for four Emmys, of which three were for his work on Oscar telecasts; he won the Emmy in 1992 for co-writing Billy Crystal’s “Oscar Medley” for the 64th Academy Awards. The Oscar telecast will air March 7 on ABC.

This article is related to: Awards, Oscars


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Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.