Well it’s Oscar time and part of the fun leading up to Sunday’s telecast is trying to predict who will close out the montage of dead Hollywood folk.

You know the drill: At some point during the Oscarcast, usually after the best song nominees but before they bust out the big awards, some celebrity ambles out and says IT'S DOWNER TIME, EVERYBODY. The audience—all eventual stars of a future edition of this montage—follow ritual, clapping politely for the lesser stars at the segment's beginning, but getting louder and more ferocious as the music swells along with the caliber of dead celebrity. The last star—usually the most notable—gets the biggest gush of applause before cutting to commercial and having a cigarette. In short, it's a cross between the obituaries and a money shot. (Just try not to get any dead celebrity in your eye. It stings.)

Last year, the hammer (aka the final shot of the montage) fell on composer Marvin Hamlisch. While he wrote music for films, he was an odd choice for a year that saw folks like Jack Klugman, Michael Clark Duncan, and Charles Durning make like a screenwriter and (cemetery) plot.

Who’s the lucky stiff who will be our hammer this year? Let’s run down the candidates!

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