Diane Warren is finally getting her man… Oscar.
Warren, who’s had 13 Academy Award nominations in the best original song category so far — but, legendarily, no wins yet — will be receiving an honorary Oscar. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced on Tuesday that Warren, Euzhan Palcy and Peter Weir will receive honorary Oscars at this year’s Governors Awards ceremony on Nov. 19 in Los Angeles.
The songwriter behind some of music’s biggest hits first received a nomination in 1988 for “Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now” from “Mannequin,” and that was only the beginning, although the flow of noms would not become steady until years later. Her next nomination came close to a decade after that, in 1997 for the soaring ballad “Because You Loved Me,” from “Up Close and Personal.”
In subsequent years, with artists like Celine Dion and Lady Gaga singing her tunes, Warren has always been a favorite contender, an artist who works every awards season with passion. Her latest nomination came in 2022 for “Somehow You Do” from “Four Good Days,” yet still Oscar eluded her, until the Academy decided her collective body of work more than merited recognition. Variety caught up with Warren on the afternoon of the announcement.
What were you doing when you found out?
I heard a few days ago, and I didn’t tell anybody. But I am still in shock. Is this real? The thing is — and what’s interesting — is that it was just Father’s Days weekend, so someone is up there pulling strings. In my mind, someone is looking out for me.
I’m the only songwriter [to have been given the Governors Award]. That is amazing. Every fucking thing about this is amazing.
It came after nomination number 13. So which of all the songs are you most proud of?
You love them for different reasons. “Because You Loved Me” goes back to my dad again, and thanking my dad for believing in me.
Or there’s “Till it Happens to You” [from the sexual assault documentary “The Hunting Ground”] — the song with Lady Gaga had a lot of impact in the world. “Stand Up For Something” [from “Marshall”] because it’s this protest anthem and is used everywhere. So it’s cool that your songs have this impact. They’re all different.
Take “How Do I Live” [from “Con Air”] — [the LeAnn Rimes recording] is the No. 1 song in Billboard by a female artist.
November is a while away, but where will you be putting your golden man, Oscar?
I’ll put him in bed with me. I’m just kidding. I love when people don’t take it seriously and they say they’re going to use it as a doorstop in the bathroom. I’m like, “No, you did not. It’s sitting there where you can look at it every fucking day.”
This is going to be staying at my house. I’m gonna put it on my piano, and I’m gonna look at it everyday. I’m really proud of it, and I’m not taking it for granted at all. I’m so fucking proud and happy. I’m so excited to have gotten this. The Governors Award is some pretty deep respect.