The Academy is charged with choosing a few dozen peers from roughly 500 candidates. This past year saw the passing of plenty of movie giants -- rom-com virtuoso Nora Ephron, composer Marvin Hamlisch, director Tony Scott -- so the competition for the remaining 30-odd spots is, so to speak, fierce.
But, like anything in Tinsletown, it's all about who you know. Those who stayed out of the limelight are less likely to be included, but, for example, publicist Lois Smith, who represented A-listers like Meryl Streep and Robert Redford, may have enough sway to make the cut.
Others, illustrious as their careers may be, are not so fortunate. Harry Morgan, whose lengthy resume includes "High Noon" and "The Ox-Bow Incident," was left out in 2012.
"I cannot image why it left my dad out of its tribute segment," Morgan's son Charley told the Times. "It would never have occurred to me to check with or otherwise lobby the Academy to be sure that he was mentioned."
You can read more about the In Memoriam process over on NYT.
[via NYT b/w HuffPost Entertainment]