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How Rod Lurie and Rita Wilson Turned Personal Tragedy Into a

A model of this story about “The Outpost” first appeared within the Race Begins concern of TheWrap’s awards journal.

When he began planning his fight film “The Outpost,” based mostly on the Jake Tapper e book in regards to the Battle of Kamdesh through which a couple of dozen Americans had been ambushed by tons of of Taliban fighters in Afghanistan, director Rod Lurie wished to incorporate a track that will be sung on display screen by one of many troopers. But he didn’t know what that track would say till probably the most tragic occasion of his life, when his son, Hunter, died instantly of a blood clot throughout preproduction.

“My son passed in front of my eyes when he was 27,” mentioned Lurie, who had flown again from the Bulgarian set to a Michigan hospital. “I began being contacted by the Gold Star households providing their help, which was superb as a result of I’m making a film in help of them and now they’re supporting me.

Rita Wilson Rod Lurie
Rita Wilson photograph by Robert Trachtenberg/Rod Lurie photograph courtesy of Rod Lurie

“I’d been talking to them about not just the meaningfulness of the deaths of their children, but the lives of their children. And as I was on that plane (back to Bulgaria), I realized that the song should be about trying to find a meaning in the life that you are leading, because you could go at any point.”

Lurie wrote the track by way of tears on the aircraft. “I began writing it as more of a poem than a song,” he mentioned. “I spent 10 hours writing it on my computer and writing it on paper. This is not my forte, necessarily, but lines just struck me, like when the song says, ‘There is nothing more brave/ Than those voices from the grave/Only they can tell us why/Only they will never lie.’ They know the truth of what they are doing.”

By the time he landed in Bulgaria, Lurie had a melody to associate with the phrases, so he sang it right into a recorder and let songwriter Larry Groupé “translate what I did into music.” Apart from the transient rendition sung by a soldier within the movie, he had a male nation singer do a model for the top credit — however that voice, he mentioned, “sounded too obvious and too masculine. I knew I wanted a female voice.”



On the recommendation of a buddy, he contacted actress, singer and songwriter Rita Wilson, who additionally contributed to writing the track. “To me, it was about the undeniable truth that we have children, young men and women, who are going out and defending our country,” she mentioned. “They don’t know in the event that they’re going to make it again, and Rod didn’t know that his son was going to die or he was going to get that decision.

“I think the song is about what we do in those moments, and I loved that they wanted a female singer, because men have traditionally been told it’s not manly to cry, and women have not been given that message.”

Wilson additionally discovered a connection between the track and the mournful people music that was performed after the demise of her father, a Bulgarian immigrant. “In many cultures, they have people who will come and sing at a grave – a sort of lamentation that allows people to cry and have the emotions they need to have,” she mentioned. “And that is what Rod was trying to do, to allow people to have that moment at the end of the movie.”

Wilson’s rendition of the track is dramatic but additionally understated, a beautiful efficiency that conveys the emotion of the second however by no means overplays it. “If you were at a funeral talking to somebody who just lost someone, you would be talking in quiet tones,” she mentioned. “A foul approach to do it will be, like, ‘I’m SO SORRY that you simply’re GOING THROUGH THIS!‘ That makes it more about the other person than the person who’s having the emotion. So in some methods it’s like that: How would you be singing the track to any person when you had been standing in entrance of that individual?”

“Everybody Cries” is now a title of nice which means to Lurie. “Ever since Hunter died,…

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