Songwriter Diane Warren Still Doesn’t Have an Oscar, But She Is Getting Her Own Movie
Remember when soap opera icon Susan Lucci finally won her Emmy? Or when legendary director Martin Scorsese landed that Best Director Oscar at last? Well, Diane Warren is still waiting for her big awards moment, at least at the Academy Awards. And her fans have been waiting since 1988.
Despite winning a ton of other awards, the songwriter has lost every single one of the 11 Oscars she’s been nominated for. Yet, despite the academy’s persistent refusal to give her an award, Warren’s legacy is secure. In fact, she’s about to get her very own musical film to celebrate it.
Diane Warren wrote the ‘Breakthrough’ song by Chrissy Metz
Throughout her career, Warren has written nine number one songs and 32 top 10 Billboard hits. Her music has been performed by countless music icons, including Whitney Houston, Elton John, Tina Turner, Barbra Streisand, Aretha Franklin, and Cher. But on the movie side of things, she’s just as prolific.
Warren’s first Oscar-nominated song was “Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now” from Mannequin. Performed by Starship, that tune was the first of many brushes with Oscar the songwriter would have. But the most recent was in 2020, when she received a nod for “I’m Standing with You” from the film Breakthrough.
This Is Us actress Chrissy Metz — who stars in Breakthrough as well — wowed audiences with her powerful performance of the song during the 2020 Oscars. Although Warren once again lost the Oscar, perhaps the nomination was just the extra boost she needed to get another big project off the ground.
We’re getting a musical film inspired by Diane Warren’s catalog
According to a report by Deadline, Paramount is developing a musical drama based on Warren’s original music. The songwriter will produce the film, which apparently will include new songs as well as selections from throughout Warren’s career.
Screenwriter Tamara Chestna is writing the film, which remains untitled. Chestna’s only produced feature writing credit to date is the 2019 romantic drama, After, starring Josephine Langford. She also served as executive producer on the Crackle original series The Art of More.
Of course, a movie based on Warren’s movie doesn’t sound nearly as crazy an idea as it once might have. In recent years, jukebox musicals — that is, those that incorporate existing pop songs into a new narrative — have become all the rage both onstage and at the movies. Besides, a career as varied and successful as Warren’s opens up all kinds of possibilities.
Which songs could be featured in the movie?
Let’s assume for a moment that any song Warren has written is fair game to include in the upcoming movie. After all, who knows what kind of contracts and licensing deals are in place that might keep her biggest hits from making the cut? If it’s all up for grabs, then audiences could be in for something truly special.
Warren’s resume includes Oscar-nominated tunes such as Aerosmith’s “I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing,” Celine Dion’s “Because You Loved Me,” and Trisha Yearwood’s (and later Lea Ann Rimes’) “How Do I Live.” Then there is the endless list of songs she wrote that aren’t already attached to other films. Megahits like Cher’s “If I Could Turn Back Time” and Toni Braxton’s “Un-Break My Heart” are chief among them.
With so much to choose from, a movie based on Warren’s catalog could be a true celebration of all that she’s accomplished. Or it could just as easily be a jarring, musical mishmash of genres and styles. Either way, it will be interesting to see how the project turns out.