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Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution Networks and Hollywood Records Announce the Release of ‘Finish Line’ Today, May 13, Performed by Global Superstar Rita Ora and Written by Award-Winning Songwriter Diane Warren
Rita Ora and Diane Warren to Unveil Exclusive Music Video Clip of ‘Finish Line’ on ABC’s ‘American Idol’ on Sunday, May 15 at 8/7c
A Majority Women-Led Team From ABC Owned Television Stations Spearheaded the Creative Direction of the Music Video For ‘Finish Line,’ the Soundtrack for ESPN’s ‘37 Words’ Title IX Docuseries Premiering June 21
Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution Networks and Hollywood Records announce the release of the song “Finish Line” TODAY, May 13, via all digital platforms. “Finish Line” is performed by global superstar Rita Ora, written by award-winning songwriter Diane Warren, and is the soundtrack for ESPN’s upcoming four-part Title IX docuseries, “37 Words.” A true passion project across the company, ABC Owned Television Stations’ race and culture team played a pivotal role in securing the song and was part of a majority-women-led team responsible for the creative vision of the “Finish Line” music video. An exclusive clip of the music video premieres Sunday, May 15, during ABC’s “American Idol.” Emmy® Award-winning producer and host Ryan Seacrest will interview both Ora and Warren LIVE.
“Finish Line” is a women empowerment anthem that will support “37 Words,” a four-part ESPN docuseries from documentary filmmakers Dawn Porter and Nicole Newnham, as part of The Walt Disney Company’s Fifty/50 initiative led by ESPN. The Fifty/50 initiative commemorates the 50th anniversary of the passing of Title IX, the federal civil rights law that prohibits sex-based discrimination in any educational institution receiving federal funding and gave women the equal opportunity to play.
“As we celebrate the 50th anniversary of Title IXacross The Walt Disney Company, it is a true gift to have two such prolific, powerhouse artists as Rita Ora and Diane Warren contribute their talent and passion to a song that celebrates and encourages girls and women around the country,” said Debra OConnell, president of Networks for Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution. “‘Finish Line’ is a fantastic and empowering anthem, brought to life by an extraordinary and inspiring group of women. I’m incredibly proud of this collaboration and thrilled to showcase it on our Networks as part of theFifty/50 initiative.”
“I knew that I wanted to be a part of the Fifty/50 initiative because it celebrates the 50-year anniversary passing of Title IX,” said multi-award-winning songwriter Diane Warren. “This powerful initiative inspired me to write ‘Finish Line’ as an uplifting anthem that reminds us to never give up the fight. It may be 50 years since the law was passed, but we are still pushing for the fundamental human right of equality. Rita Ora understood the message of never giving up within this song. She sang it so movingly with the conviction it needed.”
“I love working with Diane. She is such a brilliant songwriter and collaborating with her is always a joy,” said global superstar Rita Ora. “When she brought this song to me, I was so moved by the lyrics and the passion they evoked and knew instantly that I had to be involved with the project. The fight for women’s equality is a global issue. Every day, women around the world are fighting to be seen, heard and respected. We must continue to work to empower one another as we strive to make equality a reality for women in every part of the world.”
A women-led executive and creative team came together to ensure that diverse women spearheaded all elements of the “Finish Line” production. The collaboration is an intentional nod of empowerment and respect to Title IX women who broke barriers and paved the way for many. The “Finish Line” project was led by Adrianne Anderson, vice president of Content Development & Marketing, KABC TV-Los Angeles, and Nzinga Blake, race and culture executive producer, ABC Owned Television Stations.
“Supporting the Fifty/50 initiative was necessary,” said Blake. “ABC Owned Television Stations’ race and culture team is dedicated to amplifying the voices of the historically underrepresented, addressing cultural and social issues while celebrating them and their victories. It was a dream come true to have Diane and Rita agree to be part of this and have the women leaders in our organization support this initiative and watch the magic that evolved from this collaboration.”
Collectively, the ABC team decided to use the power of the Disney brand, tapping into internal resources and talent to launch this project. In an unprecedented move, the station group made the decision to produce and direct the music video in-house and work with Disney Music Group’s Hollywood Records to produce the song, collaborating closely with ESPN.
“Finish Line” is scheduled to release today, May 13 on all music streaming services. Fans can watch an exclusive music video clip when “American Idol” airs live, coast to coast, Sunday, May 15 (8:00-10:00 p.m. EDT/5:00-7:00 p.m. PDT), on ABC. Watch episodes on demand on Hulu the following day. Viewers will also hear the song in ESPN’s docuseries “37 Words” when it premieres June 21 (Parts 1 and 2) and June 28 (Parts 3 and 4) at 8 p.m. on ESPN.
About ABC Owned Television Stations
Disney Media Entertainment & Distribution’s eight owned ABC stations are multiplatform leaders in local news and information. Collectively No. 1 across all U.S. television, reaching 23% of households and more than 34 million Total Viewers and 62 million digital visitors a month, with a record of 2.2 billion minutes streamed, the eight stations are comprised of WABC-TV New York, KABC-TV Los Angeles, WLS-TV Chicago, WPVI-TV Philadelphia, KGO-TV San Francisco, KTRK-TV Houston, WTVD-TV Raleigh-Durham and KFSN-TV Fresno. WABC-New York has remained the No. 1 station in the country for 19 years. The stations also deliver locally sourced storytelling to more than 17 million viewers across America through its multiplatform lifestyle network, Localish. The station group has received numerous prestigious awards. Most recently in 2021, WABC was awarded 17 Emmy® Awards and several stations collected seven regional Edward R. Murrow Awards, including “Excellence in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion” and the prestigious national award for “Overall Excellence.” The entertainment brand “On the Red Carpet” won Broadcast & Cable’s “Best Lifestyle Show In 2020, the stations received five Broadcast & Cable awards, including in the 2020 Best in Local TV Awards category as Station Group of the Year for its innovative and next-generation news reporting, and in the major market category for 2020: Best News Coverage, Best Digital Multiplatform or Website, Best Investigative Reporting Station Group and Best Public Affairs Programming, illustrating the Group’s strength and ever-increasing growth and reach in the multiplatform space.
Elita Fielder Adjei
Director, Communications & Publicity, ABC Owned Television Stations
Disney Music Group is home to Hollywood Records, Walt Disney Records, Disney Music Publishing, Buena Vista Records, and Disney Concerts. The labels’ genre-spanning rosters include Queen (in North America), Andy Grammer, Sofia Carson, American Idol winner Laine Hardy, TINI Stoessel, Dreamers, Joywave, DCappella,New Hope Club, almost Monday, AREA21, Daisy The Great, Netta, and more. DMG also releases family music and film and television soundtracks from some of the largest movie franchises in the world – from Disney, Marvel Studios, Lucasfilm, and Pixar, including the chart-topping albums “Encanto,” “Frozen 2,” “Bohemian Rhapsody,” the Oscar® and Grammy®-winning “Frozen,” the Grammy-winning “Guardians of the Galaxy,” the Emmy®-winning music from “WandaVision,” the Emmy-winning music from “The Mandalorian,” the Oscar and Grammy-winning “Soul” score, plus the Oscar-winning “Black Panther,” “Coco” and “Moana” soundtracks. Recent titles include “Turning Red,” “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” and the Oscar-nominated “Encanto,” plus the forthcoming films “Bob’s Burgers,” “Lightyear” and “Thor: Love and Thunder,” the latter two featuring scores by Oscar and Grammy-winning composer Michael Giacchino. DMG’s rich and eclectic catalog has impacted pop culture globally, including music from films such as “Snow White,” “Star Wars,” and “Beauty and the Beast,” as well as recording artist Annette Funicello, and the beloved classic song “It’s a Small World.” DMG produces Disney’s For Scores podcast series highlighting conversations with acclaimed film composers from DMG soundtracks. Disney Concerts licenses and produces hundreds of shows around the world, including Star Wars in Concert, Disney on Classic, Pixar in Concert, and many more. To stream classic Disney Hits, please visit: http://disneymusic.co/DisneyHits.
Disney Music Group/Hollywood Records
About Diane Warren:
One of modern music’s most celebrated songwriters, Diane Warren has penned nine #1 & thirty-two top 10 hits on the Billboard Hot 100, is a member of the Songwriters Hall of Fame and is tied for having written the most #1 songs as a sole writer in Billboard history. She received 13 Academy Award nominations, is a Grammy winner with 15 nominations, Emmy winner and two-time Golden Globe award winner whose songs have been featured in more than 100 motion pictures. Recently, she won a Golden Globe and received an Academy Award nomination for the original song “Io Si (Seen)” from the 2020 film The Life Ahead, and received an Academy Award nomination for the 2021 original song “Somehow You Do” performed by Reba McEntire for the feature film Four Good Days.
In Summer 2021, for the first time in her career, she released her debut album, Diane Warren: The Cave Sessions Vol. 1 on August 27, 2021 (via Di-Namic Records/BMG), making her mark yet again on the modern music world with this diverse album. This collection of new original songs features some of the biggest worldwide artists, including Ty Dolla $ign, Maren Morris, John Legend, Luis Fonsi, Jon Batiste, Pentatonix, G-Eazy, Carlos Santana, Rita Ora, Sofia Reyes, Reik, James Arthur, Lauren Jauregui, Jimmie Allen, LP, Celine Dion, Darius Rucker, Paloma Faith, Leona Lewis and James Morrison.
Warren is also the sole owner of her publishing company Realsongs, the most successful female-owned and operated business in the music industry. She is the recipient of a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
About Rita Ora
Rita Ora is an international critically acclaimed singer-songwriter with four #1 UK singles and holds the record for the most Top 10 singles for a British female artist in the UK in history with a total of 13. In 2021, she co-wrote and produced the global collaboration Bang with GRAMMY winning Kazakh DJ and record producer Imanbek. Featuring David Guetta, Gunna and Argentinian rapper KHEA, the four track EP is a mix of modern pop, 80s and 90s club culture and floor-filling house. The EP is the follow up to her album Phoenix, which has amassed over 4 billion streams worldwide, spawned 3 platinum singles and includes “Lonely Together,” her collaboration with Avicii which won “Best Dance” VMA at the MTV Video Music Awards. In addition, her debut album, Ora, debuted at #1 on the UK charts and was certified platinum. Rita is also a multi-talented industry leader across TV, culture and fashion, with brand partnerships across key sectors. Her film credits include the Fifty Shades of Grey franchise, Fast & Furious, Southpaw, POKÉMON Detective Pikachu and Twist.