Oscar watchers were surprised when "Alone Yet Not Alone," the theme from a little-known Christian movie of the same name was nominated for best original song.
Now, in a surprising twist, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is revoking the song's nomination, citing inappropriate behavior by the song's composer.
The song is sung by Joni Eareckson Tada, a Maryland native, prolific Christian author and disability advocate. A diving accident in the Chesapeake Bay left Eareckson Tada paralyzed from the neck down shortly after she graduated from Woodlawn High School.
The Los Angeles Times reports the Academy said that the song's composer, Bruce Broughton, had violated a rule by emailing members of the branch during the voting period.
"No matter how well-intentioned the communication, using one’s position as a former governor and current executive committee member to personally promote one’s own Oscar submission creates the appearance of an unfair advantage,” Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs said in a statement.
"Alone Yet Not Alone," which sounds like a title of a poem written by a 10th grader, tells the story of 18th-century colonists, played in just 11 theaters and took in about $100,000, the LA Times reports.
The Academy said it will not add a replacement nominee, taking the best original song nominees down to four: "Happy" from "Despicable Me 2"; "Let It Go" from "Frozen"; "The Moon Song" from "Her"; and "Ordinary Love" from "Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom."
The Oscars air at 8:30 p.m. March 2 on ABC.
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