The Weeknd says it’s kismet that he recorded the theme for Avatar: The Way of Water because of what the franchise means to him.
Speaking with The Hollywood Reporter, he said he was 19 when he saw the first film in theaters in 2009, which was “the darkest time of my life.”
The Weeknd explained, “I was homeless, pretty much. I had dropped out of school. I didn’t know if I was going to succeed as a musician. I didn’t know if I was going to be able to live to see tomorrow. And I remember I somehow got to see the film in theaters. I don’t know how I got in. It was such an escape from my real life that the film is tattooed in my brain.”
The singer recalled being tapped by director James Cameron to create the sequel’s theme, “Nothing Is Lost (You Give Me Strength).”
“They told me they had one name on the list to do the song and it was me,” he said. “It feels [like] kismet and it’s a full-circle moment for me to be a part of something like this, because it is such an important film for me.”
Because of his history with Avatar, the song became “a labor of love.”
“The best part about writing the song was getting notes from [Cameron] and making sure that all the lyrics and the tones fit the themes of the film,” he continued. “I think I rewrote the song maybe six times to make sure it was perfect.”
The theme is short-listed for Best Original Song at the upcoming Oscars. While The Weeknd says “it’d be great” if it won, “I’m just happy that I got to be part of such a historic film.”
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