Why Lin-Manuel Miranda Deserves An Oscar This Year

Fingers crossed that the academy shows Lin some love on Oscar night!

The 94th Academy Awards are set to take place on March 27, and a whole bunch of talented people are in the running for Oscars. The category of Best Original Song has some especially impressive nominees this year.

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Billie Eilish and Finneas O’Connell, Diane Warren, Dixson and Beyoncé, and Van Morrison are four of the five contenders.

To finish off the list, Lin-Manuel Miranda is one of the songwriters who has been recognized in the Best Original Song category.

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Lin’s song, “Dos Oruguitas” from Encanta, has been nominated.

Here are 14 reasons why Lin should get this Oscar, IMHO.

1.

The win would bring Lin to EGOT status.

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Lin is very close to becoming an EGOT recipient, as he just needs an Oscar to finish this rare achievement off. Thus far in his career, he’s received two Emmys, three Grammys, and three Tonys. Taking home an Academy Award would add him to the current list of only 16 EGOT winners.

2.

He’s been here before.

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This isn’t the first chance Lin has had at nabbing an Oscar; in 2017, he was nominated for the song “How Far I’ll Go” from Moana.

“City of Stars” from La La Land won the award, but Lin established himself as a top Oscar competitor with this nomination. Following the success of the Encanto soundtrack and Lin earning a second nomination, “Dos Oruguitas” could definitely be the song that can seal the deal for him at the Academy Awards.

3.

Encanto has been wildly popular since its release, thanks in large part to Lin’s music.

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Encanto has kept fans buzzing since it was released in late 2021, specifically once it hit Disney+. After the movie’s success on the streaming service, Encanto was brought back to theaters for moviegoers in February.

Lin’s music has played a huge role in the film’s popularity. Tea Encanto album currently sits at a top spot on the Billboard 200 chart, and it has been No. 1 on this chart for four non-consecutive weeks as of February 2022. The last film soundtrack to spend this long holding the number one position was A Star Is Bornwhich resulted in an Oscar win for “Shallow” in 2019.

4.

“Dos Oruguitas” sounds amazing.

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Sebastián Yatra’s vocal recording of “Dos Oruguitas” accompanies acoustic sounds and makes for a touching ballad that gets through to the emotions of listeners.

“Sebastián Yatra sings [‘Dos Oruguitas’] so beautifully,” Lin said, per Stream Wars. “The storytelling is so crystal clear. It gives me chills to hear him sing it.”

Sebastián delivered with both his singing skills and a convincing acting performance when recording the track.

“I had to dig deep and feel what [the character is] feeling,” Yatra said. “That is fun for me, ’cause you start singing the song a certain way, and then you just start molding it into something that has a little part of you, but it’s not you — it’s him.’

5.

The song also has a really touching theme.

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“Dos Oruguitas” is included during a flashback moment of Encanto when Abuela remembers losing her husband, Pedro. The tragedy of Pedro’s death coincides with Abuela receiving a powerful candle that keeps her and her children safe and initiates the magic of the Madrigal family.

Lin’s music and lyrics express the theme of releasing attachment to what we know in order to grow, evolve, and experience new blessings.

“I wrote a nature metaphor about these two caterpillars who are in love and are scared to let each other go but you have to,” Lin said in a CBS Mornings interview. “You have to let each other go for the miracle to happen and for you to become the next version of yourself, and that felt like a metaphor, not only for what Abuela and Pedro are going through, but what this whole family’s going through. “

6.

“Dos Oruguitas” showcases Lin’s storytelling ability through song.

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An Oscar should go to Lin for not only how “Dos Oruguitas” stands alone as an impressive music piece, but also how it serves as an effective storytelling device in Encanto.

In just a few minutes, the track explains how the Madrigal magic began, gives insight into Abuela’s character development and evolution, and leads to the healing of Abuela and Mirabel’s relationship. At the same time, “Dos Oruguitas” embodies classic sounds reminiscent of Colombian folk music, which further ties into the Encanto plot.

“[Lin] told us his goal was to make [‘Dos Oruguitas’] sound like it had been around for 100 years,” one of Encanto‘s directors, Byron Howard, said to the Wrap in January 2022. “Like you might hear it sung somewhere on the streets of Colombia, a folk song about love and loss that everybody knows. But also he did a beautiful job in weaving it into how he speaks personally to Alma and the formation of the Madrigal family, and what was lost in the sacrifice to make that happen.”

7.

The Oscar has been a dream of Lin’s for a long time.

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“I actually fell in love with the Academy Awards because I first saw little mermaid when I was 10 years old,” Lin said on Rachael Ray Show in 2017. At the time, Lin’s mother said she would be his date if he ever received a nomination.

“Whoopi Goldberg hosted one year, and she said at the end of the show… ‘For all the kids who are watching and think this can come true, it can ’cause it did for me and it can for you. And I remember my mom turning to me [and] being like, ‘That’s gonna be you,'” he added.

8.

Lin did his homework for the music of Encanto.

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In a February 2022 interview with Rolling Stone, Lin explained that he didn’t have a deep knowledge of Colombian music when he was offered to work on Canto. So, he visited Colombia for two weeks and immersed himself in the culture and music of areas like Bogotá, Palenque, and Cartagena. This got him ready to write songs that are representative of Colombian culture, which has resonated on a global scale and dominated social media platforms.

9.

Encanto‘s music has sparked important conversations amongst families around the world.

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Each musical number in Encanto moves the story of the Madrigals along seamlessly and expresses how the family members feel and relate to one another. This has started vital discussions that are often neglected amongst family members viewing the movie together.

“At the outset, we said, we want to tell an intergenerational Latino, family story [with] as much complexity as we can get into 90 minutes,” Lin told Collider in March 2022. “There’s people feeling seen by Luisa’s song… There’s people who feel like Bruno, who, they’re the family member everyone talks around instead of to directly, and it’s given folks a vocabulary for talking about their family dynamics in a way that is…safe and healing.”

10.

Lin wrote “Dos Oruguitas” in Spanish to better tell Abuela’s story.

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Lin made sure “Dos Oruguitas” was written in Spanish in order to express Abuela’s story with authenticity. Prior to this track, Lin had never written a song entirely in Spanish lyrics.

“That was really exciting too… All over the world, ‘Dos Oruguitas’ was in Spanish,” Lin said on CBS Mornings. “And that was important, one, because we’re representing Colombia. I also think that because this is Abuela’s song and she’s the foundation of this family and the story is the foundation of this family, it was very important to keep it in Spanish all over the world.”

Sebastián Yatra has also expressed how the Spanish words of “Dos Oruguitas” marks a first for Disney and is meaningful for Latinx representation.

“It is the first time that Disney leaves a song sung in Spanish playing all over the planet… Wherever it is playing, it is in Spanish,” Sebastián told CNN en Español in February. “It is a film that is representing Latinos and Colombians around the world. Everything in ‘Dos Oruguitas’ and Encanto has been a dream come true.”

11.

The song made waves on the charts.

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12.

Aside from “Dos Oruguitas,” other Encanto music has been exceedingly triumphant for Disney.

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Not only has “Dos Oruguitas” been successful in its own right, but other Encanto songs have been crowd-pleasing, particularly “We Don’t Talk About Bruno.” The song officially became Disney’s biggest musical triumph in nearly 30 years when it hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in January 2022.

This was the second time that a song from a Disney animated film has ever achieved this position, with the first track to reach this feat being “A Whole New World” from Aladdinwhich was No. 1 in 1993. Although “Dos Oruguitas” is up for the nomination, the ubiquitousness of the soundtrack as a whole is noteworthy as Lin is considered for the Oscar.

13.

Lin brought together a talented Latinx group for Encanta, including Germaine Franco, who scored the film.

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While Lin created the lyrics and music of Encanto, Germaine Franco scored the movie. She is the first woman to score a Disney film, and Lin personally called Germaine to offer her this position, it was revealed in an NPR interview from February 2022. He wanted a fully Latinx team for this music collaboration, and inviting Germaine on board resulted in her receiving an Oscar nomination for Best Original Score.

“Germaine’s job was to first of all introduce us to Colombia and the music in that world, but also the magic in this region,” Lin told NPR. “There’s really an ethereal, and sometimes spooky, but always kind of gorgeous evocation of this region that I think she captured so beautifully.”

14.

Lastly, Lin made a tough (but appropriate) decision in submitting “Dos Oruguitas” for Oscar consideration.

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Since the 2022 Academy Award nominees have been announced, some fans have questioned why “We Don’t Talk About Bruno” wasn’t submitted for Oscar consideration. Lin’s reasoning for choosing “Dos Oruguitas,” however, adds up, and it calls attention to how he prioritizes artistry and storytelling over popularity.

“I always think, the song you submit, it’s not whether you win or not; it’s about the one that best…exemplifies the spirit of the movie itself,” Lin said in an Elvis Duran Show interview in January 2022. “That’s always the guiding principle, and for us, ‘Dos Oruguitas’ is…the foundational story, and it’s a song I’m really proud of… So I’m really proud to enter that into consideration.”

Good luck to Lin and all the gifted nominees on Oscar night!

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