“La La Land” is the Oscar frontrunner for Best Original Song. We’re currently betting on it to win for “City of Stars” written by Justin Hurwitz, Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, with another expected nomination for “Audition (The Fools Who Dream).” But another song from the soundtrack, “Start a Fire,” could be an underdog in the race. Are we underestimating it? Watch a new trailer for the film above featuring the song, and decide for yourself.
“Start a Fire” was written by Hurwitz along with Marius De Vries, Angelique Cinelu and last but not least the song’s performer John Legend. A nomination or even a win for the song would be ironic; in the context of the film it represents the kind of pop music that offends the sensibilities of stubborn jazz purist Sebastian (Ryan Gosling), but because it’s a John Legend song it also happens to be pretty great pop music.
It wouldn’t be the first trip to the Oscars for Legend. He won Best Original Song just two years ago for the song “Glory” from “Selma,” which he co-wrote with veteran rapper Common. But this would be his first time winning for a song he performs in character on-screen. In “La La Land” he plays Keith, who offers Sebastian a lucrative but unfulfilling gig when he falls on hard times. But do you think “Start a Fire” is better than Sebastian gives it credit for?
Be sure to make your Oscar predictions so that Hollywood insiders can see how each film is faring in our Oscar odds. You can keep changing your predictions right up until just before nominations are announced on January 24 at 5:00 am PT/8:00 am ET. Be sure to read our contest rules. And join in the fierce debate over the Oscars taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our forums.