'Coco' Oscar nominees say their song celebrates a Mexican culture that’s 'under attack'

This image released by Disney-Pixar shows a scene from the animated film, "Coco."


By JESSICA GELT | Los Angeles Times | Published: January 31, 2018

The day they were nominated for a Golden Globe for the song “Remember Me” in the Pixar animated film “Coco,” husband and wife Robert Lopez and Kristen-Anderson Lopez had to put down their terminally ill 11-month-old kitten, Finn McCool.

So on Jan. 23, when the couple earned an Oscar nomination in the original song category, were their plans for their family of four any more festive?

“We have to take everyone for flu shots,” Anderson-Lopez said.

She and her husband won an Academy Award in 2014 for writing the song “Let It Go” for “Frozen.” They had just come from a rehearsal for Disney’s Broadway adaptation of that film. The musical begins previews in late February, and it was nice, they said, to be surrounded by people offering congratulations.

“Usually it’s just me and Kristin,” Lopez joked.

The songwriters, who often work alone in their home, said they watched the nominations announcement with their 8-year-old daughter sandwiched between them on the couch.

“This was the first time we said if we got nominated we would take them,” Anderson-Lopez said of the March 4 awards ceremony at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood. “So they had a very strong agenda.”

Their 12-year-old had already left for school, but instructed them to text her when they got the news.

“I’m really excited to experience the Oscar madness as a family,” Anderson-Lopez said. “That’s what this movie is about: family.”

Speaking of the themes of “Coco” and the nominated song, Lopez added: “We feel good about this song. It seems to have hit a chord in some people -- providing comfort for those who have lost loved ones. Also, what it’s meant in Mexico has been really nice. The song itself has been an award for us in the reaction.”

Anderson-Lopez agreed, elaborating on a film that explores the Mexican tradition of Dia de Los Muertos. “We feel pressure from people who have reached out from Mexico,” she said. “This song celebrates their culture at a time when their culture is .”

“Under attack,” Lopez said.

Anderson-Lopez concluded: “So they should get the credit -- not us.”

No matter who is honored in March, flu shots will come first, followed by sushi.


© 2018 Los Angeles Times

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