Gerald Molen, an Oscar-winning producer of Schindler’s List, is accusing the Academy of discriminating against a religious movie in revoking its nomination in the best song category.
In a feisty letter to Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences president Cheryl Boone Isaacs, a copy of which was obtained by The Hollywood Reporter, Molen attacks the group’s Jan. 29 decision to rescind the nomination for Alone Yet Not Alone, an overtly faith-based film, over allegations that its songwriter Bruce Broughton, a former Academy governor, improperly lobbied members of the song branch. If Broughton and co-writer Dennis Spiegel are ineligible for an Oscar merely for asking people to give their tune a listen, he argues, more Oscar winners should be required to return their statues because they all promoted their work to some degree or another.
“Every film, director, writer, cinematographer, actor, art director, costume designer and efx house finds a way to pitch or promote their work. Many will see this decision as faith-based bigotry pure and simple,” Molen says in the letter to Boone Isaacs. . . .“Critics will pounce and accuse us of being out of touch and needlessly offending middle America by stripping this song — a song sung by a quadriplegic hero to evangelical Christians who has captured the imagination of the American people — of its nomination,” Molen writes. “In my humble opinion, it seems to me that this has turned a Cinderella story that America loves into a story of the wicked stepmother who wants to keep her daughter from the ball, with we the Academy cast as the villain.”