How Led Zeppelin’s ‘Immigrant Song’ Wound Up in ‘Thor: Ragnarok’

In addition to being included in the trailer for Thor: Ragnarok, Led Zeppelin‘s “Immigrant Song” is used in the film itself. In a new interview, director Taika Waititi spoke about how the track was part of the film’s beginnings.

Speaking to Den of Geek!, Waititi was contacted by Marvel to pitch ideas for the latest installment of the Thor franchise. But the studio was somewhat vague on details for the plot. So he created a “sizzle reel” consisting of shots from other movies that he thought would provide “the energy and the color and sort of what might look cool for this film that no one has any idea about a story for. And so, I did that, and I put ‘Immigrant Song over the top of it, and then played it for them.'”

But there was a bit of a snag. Apparently none of the executives were familiar with the classic. “And they were like, ‘Oh that’s really cool. That’s a cool song. What’s that?'” he continued. “I was like, [deadpan] ‘It’s ‘Immigrant Song’, Led Zeppelin, one of the most famous songs of all time.’ They were like, ‘Oh cool, never heard it before, very cool.’ And I was like, ‘Oh f—, really worried now.’ Er, and then, yeah, when I got the job. But from the start we’d always talked about using ‘Immigrant Song’ in the film, because it just makes perfect sense for that character, doesn’t it?'”

The Telegraph reports the song’s use in the fight sequences, noting that Led Zeppelin had long been against licensing its music for movies, although five cuts showed up in Cameron Crowe‘s Almost Famous. The band had originally denied Richard Linklater permission to use “Immigrant Song” in School of Rock, but star Jack Black was able to convince the group by making a video of himself performing the song.

Thor: Ragnarok opens in theaters this Friday, Nov. 3.

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