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David Byrne, “This Is a Life”
The former Talking Heads frontman, who won the best original score Oscar 35 years ago for The Last Emperor, teamed with Son Lux’s Ryan Lott (who curated Everything’s soundtrack) and the Grammy-nominated Japanese artist Mitski for this end-credits tune.
Drizzy penned the closing number of David O. Russell’s film, on which he was a producer, in collaboration with rising star Giveon Evans (who sings it), 2020 song Oscar nominee Daniel Pemberton (who also scored the film) and Grammy-winning producer Jahaan Akil Sweet.
Lady Gaga, “Hold My Hand”
This Oscar’s winner for A Star Is Born’s “Shallow” is back with another power ballad — written with Michael ‘BloodPop’ Tucker — for the year’s biggest blockbuster. Already up for Critics Choice, Golden Globe and Grammy awards, Tom Cruise has called it “the heartbeat of our film.”
Selena Gomez, “My Mind & Me”
Selena Gomez: My Mind & Me
Like the documentary in which it’s featured, this piano ballad — written in four days with Amy Allen, Jonathan Bellion, Jordan K. Johnson, Stefan Johnson and Michael Pollack — is about the pop star’s mental health struggles and has moved many with its honesty and emotion.
James Murphy, “New Body Rhumba”
The frontman of the Grammy-winning band LCD Soundsystem is joined by his bandmates on this tune — their first new song in five years — to which the film’s cast memorably dances as the end-credits play. The New York Times called it “a deliriously fun sequence.”
Benj Pasek & Justin Paul, “Good Afternoon”
The Oscar winners for La La Land and Tony and Grammy winners for Dear Evan Hansen contributed multiple songs to Apple’s comedy, this hilarious showstopper of which was suggested by star Ryan Reynolds and co-written with Khiyon Hursey, Sukari Jones and Mark Sonnenblick.
Rihanna, “Lift Me Up”
The pop queen’s first single in six years — co-written with the film’s director Ryan Coogler, composer Ludwig Göransson and Tems — is a ballad tribute to Chadwick Boseman. Might she perform it when she headlines the Super Bowl halftime show on Feb. 12?
Dernst “D’Mile” Emile II & Jazmine Sullivan, “Stand Up”
This duo of two-time Grammy winners (D’Mile wrote each of the last two song of the year Grammy winners, an unprecedented feat, and won this Oscar two years ago) teamed up for this end-credits song about — per Sullivan — “stepping into [one’s] power.”
Taylor Swift, “Carolina”
A fan of the book on which the film is based, the beloved singer/songwriter could land her first Oscar nom for this Appalachian-inspired folk tune, which closes the film. It’s already been nominated for Critics’ Choice, Golden Globe and Grammy awards.
The Weeknd, “Nothing Is Lost (You Give Me Strength)”
Oscar-nominated seven years ago for “Earned It” from 50 Shades of Grey, the pop star returns to contention for this tribal ballad — produced with the film’s composer, Simon Franglen, and previous collaborators Swedish House Mafia — that closes James Cameron’s epic.
A version of this story first appeared in a Jan. stand-alone issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.
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