The track entered the evening as among those nominated in the Best Original Song category thanks to its end credits appearance in the Will Smith-fronted King Richard. The song features music and lyrics by Beyoncé and DIXSON, the latter of whom is a Roc Nation signee whose previous collaborations include tracks with Chance the Rapper and Justin Bieber.
Speaking withVariety this January, DIXSON detailed just how short the timeline was for finishing the song, which he said marks the sort of achievement he didn’t expect “so early” into his career.
Meanwhile, the aforementioned Smith—who portrays the father of Venus and Serena Williams in the Reinaldo Marcus Green-directed film—previously addressed the track’s origin in an Entertainment Weeklychat. Per the actor, Beyoncé’s initial inspiration was sparked by seeing a screening of the film, after which he was “so happy” to receive a call from the Lemonade artist.
Other performers at this year’s Oscars included Sebastián Yatra (Encanto), Billie Eilish and Finneas (No Time to Die), and Reba McEntire (Four Good Days). Van Morrison (Belfast) had also received a nomination in the Best Original Song category but was unable to attend the ceremony. Also a part of this year’s festivities was the All-Star Band featuring Travis Barker, Sheila E, Robert Glasper, and music director Adam Blackstone.