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5 Songs Written For Movies That Were Left Out of the Movie

March 28, 2016

Music is a big part of the movies…except when the song gets cut out entirely.
007 Thunderball Soundtrack
Producers of the 1965 James Bond movie Thunderball couldn’t make up their minds on a title song. After rejecting “Mr. Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang” by Shirley Bassey (who had done “Goldfinger” for Goldfinger), they asked Dionne Warwick to re-record it. Studio United Artists rejected both renditions, because they wanted the song to have the same name as the movie, for marketing purposes. Filmmakers went in the complete opposite direction and commissioned Johnny Cash to write “Thunderball.” Ultimately a different “Thunderball,” recorded by Tom Jones, was used.

In 2012, it was reported that British pop star Ed Sheeran had recorded and submitted an unnamed song for use in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. But no song by Sheeran appeared in that movie. But in 2012 a Sheeran song called “I See Fire” appeared on the soundtrack for The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug.

At the behest of director Quentin Tarantino, R&B star Frank Ocean wrote a ballad called “Wise Man” to be used in the 2012 movie Django Unchained. While Tarantino called the song “truly lovely and poetic,” it was a little too lovely and poetic, because he couldn’t find a place for it in the action-heavy drama.
“Lay Lady Lay” is one of the best known songs ever recorded by Bob Dylan. It was actually written for the 1969 Oscar-winning movie Midnight Cowboy. But Dylan didn’t finish recording it in time for use in the film, so filmmakers went with Nilsson’s version of “Everybody’s Talkin’” instead.

It’s not often that a Beatle gets rejected. But in 1978, Paul McCartney’s band Wings recorded an ultimately unused title theme for the Alan Alda movie Same Time Next Year. Then Wings wrote “Did We Meet Somewhere Before” for use in Warren Beatty’s remake of Heaven Can Wait. Beatty turned it down, but then McCartney struck a deal with director Allan Arkush: He could use “Did We Meet Somewhere Before” in his Ramones-starring movie Rock ‘n’ Roll High School, for just $500 and no on-screen credit for Wings, because to do so would be a violation of a record contract.

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