No sooner had the Academy Awards ended Sunday night than speculation began bubbling that Beyoncé had lip-synched to a pre-recorded track during a tribute to movie musicals on the program. Wearing a red sequined dress and top hat, B performed as part of the medley with host [movieperson id="234610"]Hugh Jackman[/movieperson], along with special guests [movieperson id="318323"]Vanessa Hudgens[/movieperson] and [movieperson id="438080"]Zac Efron[/movieperson] and [movie id="334542"]"Mamma Mia!"[/movie] stars
[movieperson id="267747"]Dominic Cooper[/movieperson] and
[movieperson id="346182"]Amanda Seyfried[/movieperson]. (Beyoncé also dropped in a bit of "At Last," which she performed at Obama's Inaugural balls and received some unexpected criticism from Etta James, whose version of the song is most familiar.)
While Jackman's breathing and laughter could be heard at times during the performance and he appeared to be singing live (as did the rest of the cast), Beyoncé's vocals seemed to be mimed.
A spokesperson for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences would not comment on which portions of the performance were live and which were taped.
"As is the case with any live event of this scale and scope, there are always elements of the show that are pre-recorded," Leslie Unger, director of communications for the Academy, told MTV News on Monday (February 23). "But I will not go into detail about which elements were on this show."
A spokesperson for Beyoncé had not responded to MTV News' requests for comment at press time.
Following reports that Hudson and Springsteen had performed to pre-recorded tapes at the Super Bowl, that show's producer, Ricky Minor, explained that due to the many uncontrollable variables, Hudson had performed to a tape in order to avoid "the slightest glitch" that could devastate the performance.
Unger also declined to comment on a Monday report in the New York Post that said Rihanna was slated to perform at the Oscars but dropped out, saying the Academy does not discuss "who was potentially" booked for the show.