by Cam Fuller, Saskatoon StarPhoenix
Saskatchewan musician Colter Wall has a song in the upcoming movie Three Billboards Outside Ebbings, Missouri.
The movie stars Woody Harrelson and Francis McDormand. It’s directed and written by Martin McDonagh (In Bruges, Seven Psychopaths).
Wall’s song, which figures prominently in the movie trailer, is Sleeping on the Blacktop.
It’s the same song used in the movie Hell or High Water, which was Oscar-nominated for best picture this year.
“It’s pretty crazy, a huge breakthrough for him,” said Saskatoon lawyer Kurt Dahl, who negotiated the placement.
“Both of those movies are really smart and hip. It speaks to how the music is, too. It’s a good fit.”
The negotiations hit a snag early because the movie people wanted an instrumental version. The way it was recorded, that wasn’t possible. Dahl decided to bide his time.
“We thought we’d lost the deal. They came back a few weeks later and said we don’t need an instrumental version of the song, let’s just do it.”
Famously understated, Wall didn’t make a fuss about it, Dahl said.
“He hasn’t said much about the placement except, ‘I like Woody Harrelson, that’s cool.’”
Originally from Swift Current but now relocating to Nashville, Wall is the son of Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall.
“I think he really is the real deal and people really see that. There’s a certain authenticity that people always want in their music. It’s nice when that authenticity really connects with people,” said Dahl.