H.E.R. has won an Oscar for her song Fight For You, written for the film Judas And The Black Messiah. The guitarist and singer received the award for Best Original Song last night (25 April) at the 93rd Academy Awards.
Accepting the award, H.E.R. said: “I did not expect to win this… I am so, so, so grateful. Not only to win but also to be a part of such an important story. Thank you to the academy – I’ve always wanted to say that – and of course, my collaborators, D’Mile and Tiara Thomas, the song wouldn’t be what it was without them.”
The film that the song is from, Judas And The Black Messiah, portrays the betrayal of Fred Hampton, who led the Black Panthers in the late 1960s. Hampton was betrayed by William O’Neal, acting as an FBI informant, and assassinated as part of the FBI’s illegal COINTELPRO program. The film stars Daniel Kaluuya as Hampton and LaKeith Lee Stanfield as O’Neal. Kaluuya’s performance as Hampton also won him the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor.
H.E.R. also noted the importance of the story the film tells in her acceptance speech, saying: “Musicians, filmmakers I believe we have an opportunity and responsibility to tell the truth and to write history the way that it was and how it connects us to today and what we see going on in the world today.”
“Knowledge is power, music is power and as long as I’m standing I’m always going to fight for us, I’m always going to fight for my people and fight for what’s right and I think that’s what music does and that’s what storytelling does.”
H.E.R. performed the track at the Oscars pre-show, which you can see below.
H.E.R.’s song won out over songs from The Trial of the Chicago 7 (Hear My Voice), Eurovision Song Contest: The Story Of Fire Saga (Husavik), The Life Ahead (La Vita Davanti a Se) (Io Sì (Seen)), and One Night in Miami (Speak Now).