How Lupita Nyong’o Got Taylor Swift to Clear ‘Shake it Off’ for Film 5

Lupita Nyong’o is opening up about having a personal connection to Taylor Swift‘s “Shake It Off” song and her efforts to include it in her film, Little Monsters.

While appearing on the latest Hot Ones episode, the A Quiet Place: Day One star discussed Swift’s hit single being played at the end of her 2019 film Little Monsters for a sing-a-long. Host Sean Evans questioned whether it was true that the actress reached out to the music superstar for song clearance after the film’s producers failed to do so.

“Correct. Yes,” Nyong’o revealed.

When she was working on Star Wars in London, Nyong’o said, “I was going through a lot of self-doubt because it was the second thing I had done. I was getting a little depressed. My best friend came to London and Taylor had just released ‘Shake it Off.’ And he played it for me to like get me into better spirits, and we just jumped on my bed, and we just danced and danced, and it lifted my spirits.”

After reading the Little Monsters script, Nyong’o said she thought of the song and “what it meant to Miss Caroline and to the kindergartners,” adding that “it meant a lot to me that I was going to get to play it on the ukulele and everything.”

When Nyong’o learned they couldn’t get the rights to the song featured on Swift’s 1989 album, she took it upon herself to make a pitch to Swift and explain the story of how the song helped her during a dark time.

“When they came, and they told me ‘Aw, no we can’t get the rights’ I decided, ‘OK. I’m going to go, I’m going to make a pitch, I’m going to let Taylor know what this song means to me,’ and I told her that story about how it lifted me from an almost depression, and the next thing I knew, it was cleared,” she revealed.

Nyong’o is next set to star in A Quiet Place: Day One — a prequel to the 2018 original A Quiet Place — alongside Stranger Things breakout Joseph Quinn. In the film, Nyong’o plays a young woman with a cat named Frodo who fights for safety amid an alien invasion of New York City.

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