Watch Sara Bareilles Cover Joni Mitchell for Oscars’ In Memoriam Segment

As usual, the segment created controversy with snubs.

By Hayden Wright

The ‘In Memoriam’ portion of the Oscars always courts controversy with the possibility for snubs and the dour, upsetting premise of remembering filmmakers who’ve died. The segment works best when the musical pairing soars: Last night, Sara Bareilles gave a moving and soulful performance of Joni Mitchell’s “Both Sides Now.”

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In addition to movie legends like Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, the package included Oscar-winner (and occasional actor) Prince and First Lady Nancy Reagan.

However, show producers used the wrong photo for deceased Australian costume designer Janet Paterson. They selected an image of her friend, producer Jan Chapman, who lamented the error in an email to Variety.

“I was devastated by the use of my image in place of my great friend and long-time collaborator Janet Patterson,” Chapman wrote. “I had urged her agency to check any photograph which might be used and understand that they were told that the Academy had it covered. Janet was a great beauty and four-time Oscar nominee and it is very disappointing that the error was not picked up.”

Actress Patricia Arquette also pointed out the omission of her sister, actress and transgender activist Alexis Arquette—who had memorable roles in films like The Wedding Singer. 

“I’m really bummed,” Patricia told Vanity Fair. “For the in memoriam, they left out our sister Alexis, and she was trans.”

Nevertheless, Bareilles’ musical tribute beautifully rendered Mitchell’s complex lyrics. Watch it here:

 

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