It’s hard to believe that Bette Midler, one of the golden lights of show biz for more than 40 years, has never sung at the Academy Awards, but there’s a first time for everything. Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, the out super-producers of this year’s ceremony have announced the Divine Miss M. has finally relented to give up her Oscar-performing cherry during the global broadcast on March 2.
“We are thrilled to have Bette perform on the Oscars for the very first time,” the two said in a statement. “We believe she will make our Oscar telecast an especially moving evening.”
No doubt. Midler, who has twice been nominated for best actress for her dazzling musical turns in 1979’s electrifying The Rose and in 1991’s sentimental For the Boys, can wring inconceivable amounts of pathos from any number. The entertainer, who is also overdue for the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award that’s handed out to industry do-gooders such as Angelina Jolie and Elizabeth Taylor, for her many years of charitable work, tweeted a note to fans asking for song suggestions.
Now that the news is out, what shall I sing at this years#Oscars? http://t.co/t1v4r0zOaR
— Bette Midler (@BetteMidler) February 19, 2014
Her movie anthem “The Rose” is a too-obvious choice. “The Wind Beneath My Wings” during the In Memoriam reel is just too maudlin. Since the Academy has already announced it will honor the 75th anniversary of The Wizard of Oz during the broadcast, how about a Bathhouse Bette-spin on “(Somewhere) Over the Rainbow?” Tell us what you think she should sing in the comments section.