Docs About Jon Batiste, Michael J. Fox & More Shortlisted for 2024 Oscar for Documentary Feature Film

Docs about Little Richard, Joan Baez, Carlos Santana and Blood, Sweat & Tears, among others, fell short.

Jon Batiste in "American Symphony."

Jon Batiste in "American Symphony."

Courtesy of Netflix

American Symphony, which explores a year in a life of musician Jon Batiste; Still: A Michael J. Fox Movie, which traces the life story of the beloved actor who is living with Parkinson’s disease; and Desperate Souls, Dark City and the Legend of Midnight Cowboy, about the making of the classic film which won the 1969 Oscar for best picture, are among 15 documentaries shortlisted for best documentary feature film.

Batiste has won five Grammys and an Oscar in the past few years – and is nominated for six more Grammys at the Feb. 4 ceremony. Matthew Heineman directed the film. Fox received a honorary Oscar at last year’s Governors Awards.


A total of 167 films were eligible for best documentary feature. Members of the documentary branch of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences voted to determine the shortlist, which was announced on Thursday (Dec. 21). They will vote again to determine the nominees, which will be announced on Tuesday, Jan. 23. The 96th Oscars will be held on Sunday, March 10 at the Dolby Theatre at Ovation Hollywood.

The shortlist also includes 32 Sounds, which explores the phenomenon of sound; Going to Mars: The Nikki Giovanni Project, about the famed poet; and Bobi Wine: The People’s President, which follows Ugandan opposition leader, activist and musical star Bobi Wine, who used his music to fight the regime led by Yoweri Museveni.

Many music docs failed to make the shortlist, including Carlos (about Carlos Santana); Elis & Tom – It Had to Be You (about the 1974 album by Elis Regina and Antônio Carlos Jobim); Have You Got It Yet? The Story of Syd Barrett and Pink Floyd; Immediate Family (about musicians who played behind Carole King and James Taylor, among others); Joan Baez I Am a Noise; Little Richard: I Am Everything; Mr. Jimmy (about a Japanese guitarist who is a superfan of Jimmy Page); Music Is My Life – Dr. Joseph Shabalala and Ladysmith Black Mambazo; Rewind & Play (about Thelonious Monk); What the Hell Happened to Blood, Sweat & Tears?; and Yoshiki Under the Sky (about the Japanese composer and artist)


Films submitted in the documentary feature film category may also qualify for Academy Awards in other categories, including best picture. Documentary features that have been submitted in the international feature film category as their country’s official selection are also eligible in this category.

The Academy today announced shortlists in nine other categories: documentary short film, international feature film, makeup and hairstyling, best original song, best original score, animated short film, live action short film, sound and visual effects.

Here are the 15 films that are shortlisted for the 2024 Oscar for best documentary feature film. The films are listed in alphabetical order.

American Symphony
Apolonia, Apolonia
Beyond Utopia
Bobi Wine: The People’s President
Desperate Souls, Dark City and the Legend of Midnight Cowboy
The Eternal Memory
Four Daughters
Going to Mars: The Nikki Giovanni Project
In the Rearview
Stamped from the Beginning
Still: A Michael J. Fox Movie
A Still Small Voice
32 Sounds
To Kill a Tiger
20 Days in Mariupol


This article was first published by Billboard U.S.

AP Dhillon smashing his guitar at Coachella

AP Dhillon smashing his guitar at Coachella


AP Dhillon Drops Off Coachella's Second Weekend

The Punjabi-Canadian star has faced backlash in Indian media and on social media for his guitar smash on weekend one, but the festival says he's cancelling due to scheduling conflicts.

AP Dhillon is leaving the California desert behind. Coachella announced that the Punjabi-Canadian star will not appear at the festival's second weekend as planned, citing scheduling conflicts. The festival announced it in a follow up tweet to one announcing that rapper Kid Cudi has been added.

While Dhillon's first-weekend performance was well-received by the Coachella crowd and many of his supporters, he's also had some backlash due to how he closed his set, which has been widely covered by media in India.

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