HOLLYWOOD – You may not have loved “Fifty Shades of Grey” the movie, but it’s hard to find anyone who didn’t get swept away by the film’s soundtrack. Last night, Universal Pictures brought out some major A-list talent to remind Oscar voters (and perhaps some HFPA members) of the Original Song contenders from the movie. And, yes, that meant intimate performances from none other than The Weeknd and Ellie Goulding.
“Fifty Shades” actually has three potential nominees when you count “Salted Wound” sung and co-written by Sia as well as Brian West, Gerald Eaton and Oliver Krauss. The performance shy artist wasn’t on hand, but Goulding started out the set with “Love Me Like You Do,” one of the biggest hits of her career. The track, written by Max Martin, Savan Kotecha, Ilya Salmanzadeh, Ali Payami and Tove Nilsson has over 830 million views on YouTube and making the Best Original Song cut would no doubt bring screams of joy from the Academy Awards producers.
Another “Fifty Shades” player who would rock the Oscars ceremony is The Weeknd (aka Abęl Tesfaye) who was incredible in person singing “Earned It” which he co-wrote with Stephan Moccio, Jason “DaHeala” Quenneville and Ahmad Balshe. As he’s proven on numerous music awards shows The Weeknd is a knockout singer who would wake the Dolby Theater crowd from their mid-show doldrums in a heartbeat. The Weeknd also was kind enough to perform his other “Fifty Shades” soundtrack song, “Where You Belong” for the industry heavy crowd.
After the performances Goulding and Tesfaye were presented with their framed platinum records for the “Fifty Shades” soundtrack album that has sold over 1 million units worldwide.
Whether or not either “Fifty Shades” track earns an Oscar nomination Universal Pictures is – in theory – still in the drivers seat for the category. Global smash “See You Again” from “Furious 7” is expected to make the cut and you can already smell the social media outrage if it doesn’t win. There isn’t a distinct frontrunner beyond “See You,” but other contenders include “One Kind of Love” from “Love & Mercy,” the Lady Gaga penned “Til It Happens To You” from the doc “The Hunting Ground,” “Simple Song #3” from “Youth,” “Flashlight” (written by the prolific Sia and Sam Smith among others) from “Pitch Perfect 2” and, potentially, “So Long” from “Concussion.”
In the meantime, enjoy a taste of Goulding and The Weeknd’s performances below.
@abelxo live pt1 #fiftyshadesofgrey #oscars #theweeknd A video posted by Gregory Ellwood (@gregel17) on