Two romantic comedy favorites - Drew Barrymore and Hugh Grant - make beautiful music together in Warner Bros Pictures' Music and Lyrics, written and directed by Marc Lawrence. Barrymore plays a wacky plant lady who becomes involved in helping to write a comeback song for '80s has-been Alex Fletcher (Grant) after she blurts out lyrics off the top of her head while in the process of killing his houseplants.
The Debut of Drew Barrymore as a Singer: Barrymore makes her feature film singing debut in Music and Lyrics but it wasn’t the first film where singing was an option. Barrymore was one of the only cast members of the 1996 Woody Allen film Everyone Says I Love You who didn’t want to sing. “Yes, because I've always been told that I was not allowed to sing and how horrible it was,” explained Barrymore about that decade-old decision. “This has been an interesting two years because I got to sing in the Curtis Hanson film and now in this film. So that was a very pivotal moment for me. I'm not a ‘no’ person. I'm not a ‘can't do’. I'm the sort of person who believes you can do anything you put your mind to. But I was just given a little bit more of a chance and some more time and encouragement, and I think since that moment happened, I thought, ‘Oh god, I never want to go down like this. I will not be on my deathbed thinking would have, should have, could have.’ So it was good. It was essential for me not to fail. And by the way, go ahead and fail, but at least try.”
Barrymore’s even part of the soundtrack CD for Music and Lyrics. “And I'm on the Lucky You soundtrack too,” added Barrymore. “It's just unbelievable that I went from the ‘shut up’ moment to a ‘shut up and sing’ moment. I don't know.”
But don’t look for a solo album from the actress/producer - and now singer - anytime soon. “No, probably not,” said Barrymore, adding, “But at least it means I faced my fears. That's such an important thing in life.” Barrymore’s serious about tackling projects and overcoming obstacles that frightening her. “I would love to focus on the next few years definitely facing fears and doing things I haven't done before. So I think about that a lot, actually. And I look forward to scaring the ever-loving crap out of myself for the next two or three years.”
A Peek at Barrymore’s Musical Tastes: “I love this album from Jenny Lewis. [It’s] the album I listened to the most during the making of this movie. I love a lot of stuff…Adam Green, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones. I just love every type of music and I think this in particular going back into the '80s — because the film does explore that time — there was such a great dichotomy of music happening. Whether you were into a Joy Division type of headspace or a Madonna, Duran Duran type of headspace, I just love the music that came out of that decade. The start of MTV, punk rock turning into alternative turning into pop, it was such a great time for music.
I particularly like a lot of music that came out of this. So much great music came out of that time. You can't help but go back to the '70s and '80s. You have like five, literally, great genres in that space of 10 years. I think we'll always go back to that time in cinema for many years to come.”
Drew Barrymore’s Favorite Music and Lyrics Scene: “I enjoyed when we were singing the song in [Hugh Grant’s] little recording studio. That was a fun scene. That was the scene where I thought, ‘Oh, I'm having a really good time doing this.”
The Appeal of Working with Hugh Grant: “I was excited to work with him because I love all of his movies. To me it was like getting to work with someone who really is a king, an ace, a genius and a master in their field. So I was like, ‘Sign me up. I'm there.’ Lucky me.”
Yet Another Singing Role: The next film audiences will see Barrymore in is the Curtis Hanson movie Lucky You starring Eric Bana. “I play a sort of off-the-main-strip, low-rent lounge singer who is from Bakersfield and has dreams of singing, but she's not very good. But she's trying to find her dream.”