After the success of Beauty and the Beast, The Jungle Book and Cinderella, Disney is bringing Aladdin to live-action life. Naomi Scott plays Jasmine in the movie and gets to sing an all new song.
Aladdin composer Alan Menken wrote the music and Benj Pasek and Justin Paul wrote the music for Speechless.
“The fact that they wrote something I get to sing first of all, that’s already surreal,” Scott said. “Also when I heard it, just the words, the lyrics and how timely it was, the message behind the song.”
Jasmine sings Speechless when she prepares to confront Jafar (Marwan Kenzari) when it looks like things are going in his favor. She prepares to speak up for herself and her kingdom.
“The idea of not going speechless, that everyone has a voice, doesn’t matter who you are, doesn’t matter what you look like, doesn’t matter what gender, your voice matters,” Scott said. “Speaking out against injustice matters, not just standing being a spectator.”
Performing Speechless, Scott had a lot on her mind.
“That day was very emotional because we wanted it to feel raw,” she said. “I wanted it to feel like it’s what she’s going through in that moment and we did some of it live as well which was a different type of challenge. For me, it’s the world’s song.”
Live singing get a boost with the Les Miserables film. Now Scott knows how those actors must have felt.
“I had an earpiece and I was basically singing a cappella in this quiet room to myself like a crazy person,” she said. “That’s what it felt like.
Scott is a recording artist and has sung in films like Lemonade Mouth. She’s never sung as a character like Jasmine before though.
“Obviously how I naturally sing is a bit more kind of in my own voice,” Scott said. “So definitely I had to put on some type of voice but I didn’t want to put on a musical theater voice as well. I didn’t want it to feel performancey. I still wanted it to feel like you’re going through what she’s going through.”
Menken felt some of Scott’s natural style came through.
“I naturally tend to sway more in the R&B world in terms of just my own music,” Scott said. “I maybe added a little bit of that. I don’t really know what happened in that booth but I think it was a mix of both: singing in character, also bringing a little bit of my own flavor.”
Aladdin is in theaters Friday, May 24.More: Aladdin, Naomi Scott