India bags Oscar nominations for original song and 2 documentaries

Naatu Naatu, the hit dance track from S.S. Rajamouli’s blockbuster RRR, continued its winning march on Tuesday with a coveted nomination for the original song at the Oscars 2023 where Indian documentaries All That Breathes and Elephant Whisperers also got nods in the documentary feature and documentary short categories.

Surreal sci-fi film Everything Everywhere All At Once topped the Oscar nominations with 11, as Hollywood formally kicked off the race to the all-important Academy Awards. It was followed by German anti-war movie All Quiet on the Western Front and Irish black comedy The Banshees of Inisherin, which each received nine nominations from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

The award ceremony will be held on March 12.

The Last Film Show, India’s official entry in the International Feature category, however, failed to make the cut for the final five, but there was much to celebrate as it is perhaps for the first time that three films from the country are competing in different segments. Naatu Naatu, composed by M.M. Keeravani and choreographed by Prem Rakshith, will compete with Applause (Tell It Like a Woman); Hold My Hand (Top Gun: Maverick); Lift Me Up (Black Panther: Wakanda Forever) and This Is a Life (Everything Everywhere All at Once).

All That Breathes, which is competing for an Oscar alongside All the Beauty and the Bloodshed, Fire of Love, A House Made of Splinters and Navalny, has also emerged as one of the best documentaries this year. Set in Delhi, the documentary follows siblings Mohammad Saud and Nadeem Shehzad who have devoted their lives to rescuing and treating injured birds.

Tamil documentary The Elephant Whisperers, directed by Kartiki Gonsalves, tells the story about the unbreakable bond between two abandoned elephants and their caretakers. It has been nominated in the Documentary Short Subject category at the Oscars where it will compete with Haulout, How Do You Measure a Year?, The Martha Mitchell Effect and Stranger at the Gate.

(With inputs from AP)