Who will win the Best Original Song Oscar in 2009?

    Major studios are briskly releasing a number of films at the tail end of December. This last ditch attempt at getting nominated for an Academy Award occurs every year, but songwriters already have an idea whether they stand a chance of getting the nod. The contenders for Best Original Song nominations, all 49 of them, have been announced, and can be viewed on this page.

    Robyn Hitchcock makes the list with his song (“Up to Our Nex”) from the excellent Rachel Getting Married. Sadly, Tunde Adebimpe’s touching Neil Young cover from the same feature isn’t eligible. High School Musical 3 has a bone-shuddering 11 songs on the list, so expect that to feature somewhere. Other songs of interest include the memorable “Dracula’s Lament” from Forgetting Sarah Marshall (which would make an awesome live performance on Oscar night) and M.I.A.’s collaboration with A.R. Rahman on the Slumdog Millionaire soundtrack (“O Saya”).

    Jack White and Alicia Keys’ Bond theme “Another Way to Die” also makes the list, and could make for a memorable live performance if the song is nominated. Peter Gabriel’s contribution to the Wall-E soundtrack, “Down to Earth” is also another likely (and somewhat unusual) contender. Fortunately the rules have been changed this year, and only two songs from a single film can be nominated. Here’s hoping that High School Musical 3 doesn’t dominate.