This Unforgettable Part Of Titanic Almost Didn’t Happen

When it comes to the Titanic film, three things come to mind: Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet and THAT Celine Dion song. If you were around at the time, you’ll distinctly remember the song ‘My Heart Will Go On’ being everywhere.

In fact, according to Official Charts, the track debuted at Number 1 on the Official Singles Chart, with first week sales of 234,000. It became Dion’s second UK Number 1 single, and was her last to hit the top spot.

Overall, My Heart Will Go On has chart sales in excess of 2.1 million, making it one of the biggest-selling singles by a female artist of all time in the UK and arguably, the defining song of Celine’s career.

Why My Heart Will Go On almost wasn’t part of the Titanic story

If you’re familiar with the film, you’ll know that the music used throughout Titanic is mostly instrumental. The song was written by Will Jennings and performed by James Horner and the original plan was that the song would be a motif throughout the film but according to Billboard, the label had a different idea in mind.

Music supervisor Randy Gerston told Billboard that they had done a record deal with Sony to do the soundtrack, which would have been just Horner’s score, but the label had imagined they would get an end-title song into the film. With this in mind, Will Jennings was secretly brought on board to write the lyrics.

Things had to stay hush-hush for a while as director James Cameron had reportedly said that he was sceptical that a pop song would work at the end of this very dramatic, historical drama.

Reportedly, James had said: “My movie is big enough, I don’t need something bigger, I don’t need any singer.” and Horner responded with: “I’m not going to tell you who sang the song. Just please give me a favour and listen just one time.”

Needless to say, he fell in love with the ballad, and “felt like it gave a resonance to the rest of the movie.”

Even actor Billy Zane said the song was integral to the film, telling Billboard: “The big night for me was the premiere at the Chinese Theatre. The song just delivered. People were reduced to jelly. The most stoic and stalwart pillars of the industry… They were beside themselves.

“When she hits the high note in “Near, far, wherever you are” — bam! The floodgates open.”

Celine Dion didn’t even want it to be part of Titanic

Celine also admitted to Billboard that she didn’t really want to do the song, either. When listening to the original demo, her husband and manager interrupted James Horner and said: “James, James, James. Listen to me. You’re not doing justice to the song right now. I’m going to make a deal with you: Let’s have Céline make a demo.”

Celine said that in that moment she wanted to “choke” her husband, “Because I didn’t want to do it! I just came out of “Because You Loved Me,” and then “Beauty and the Beast” was, like, huge. Why do we need to break our nose?”

To be fair, he was right to push for it. What a track.

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