‘Naatu Naatu:’ The Song that Beat Rihanna and Lady Gaga at the Oscars
“Naatu Naatu” blew the competition out of the water once again. The song, which was featured in the movie RRR, was up against some big movies and performed by even bigger names at last night’s Oscars. During the 95th Oscars ceremony Sunday night (March 12), “Naatu Naatu” was nominated against Diane Warren’s “Applause” from Tell It Like a Woman, “This Is A Life,” from Everything Everywhere All at Once, which was performed by David Byrne and Stephanie Hsu, Lady Gaga’s “Hold My Hand” from Top Gun: Maverick — which she performed a stripped-down version, and Rihanna’s “Lift Me Up” from Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, which she also performed at the awards show.
The song made history last night, becoming the first song from an Indian film to win in the category. The last time a foreign language song won in the category, it was “Jai Ho” from 2008’s Slumdog Millionaire. M.M. Keeravaani did the music for “Naatu Naatu,” while Chandrabose did the lyrics. The pair took the stage together Sunday night to celebrate the historic win.
RRR is an Indian-Telugu action/drama film that follows two legendary revolutionaries in the 1920s. After a long journey, they return home to start fighting back against British colonialists. The film has been a global success and a major breakthrough for “Tollywood.” Tollywood refers to films made in Southern India. According to CinemaBlend, the “Tolly” in Tollywood is for Telugu, which is the language spoken in the states of Andhra Pradesh, and Telangana. Tollywood films are not the same as Bollywood films. Earning ($30 million) worldwide on its first day, RRR recorded the highest opening day earning by an Indian film. To date, the film has grossed more than $150 million worldwide, setting several box office records for an Indian film.
Watch the music video for “Naatu Naatu” below: