By Anjelica Oswald
Of the five Oscar-nominated original songs for the 87th Academy Awards, Selma’s “Glory” and Beyond the Light’s “Grateful” are the only songs that solely play over the end credits of their respective film. The other three songs — “Everything is Awesome” from The LEGO Movie, “Lost Stars” from Begin Again and “I’m Not Gonna Miss You” from Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me — are all performed at some point during the film.
Now, that’s not to say that the end-credits songs aren’t relevant to the plot. Both “Grateful” and “Glory” stick with the themes of their respective films and summarize relevant events, even if they aren’t integral to each plot’s progression.
“Everything is Awesome” from The LEGO Movie is featured in the film as a popular song in the LEGO universe, one the characters sing along to, but the complete song plays over the end credits.
In Begin Again, ”Lost Stars” is performed three times in the film. Gretta, (Keira Knightley) is a singer-songwriter who wrote the song “Lost Stars” as a folky love song she composed for her ex-boyfriend Dave (Adam Levine) one Christmas. Dave, a pop star, ‘popifies’ the song and creates a commercial hit, but Gretta thinks the song has lost its meaning. Later, Dave tells her to come listen to him play the song, and he then performs her version.
Glen Campbell’s “I’m Not Gonna Miss You” is featured at the end of the documentary on his life, which chronicles his final tour as he struggles with Alzheimer’s. The final clip unites him with former players of The Wrecking Crew.
Is a song that is part of the plot more likely to win an Oscar? For songs that have won in the 21st century, there isn’t a particular benefit for songs that appear in the film versus songs that played over the credits.
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