Into the West (song)

For other uses, see Into the West (disambiguation).
"Into the West"
Single by Annie Lennox
from the album The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (soundtrack)
Released November 2003
Recorded New Zealand
Genre Pop, New age
Length 4:35
Label Reprise
Writer(s) Annie Lennox, Fran Walsh, Howard Shore[1]
Producer(s) Nicky Ryan
Annie Lennox singles chronology
"Pavement Cracks"
"Into the West"
"A Thousand Beautiful Things"

"Into the West" is a song performed by Annie Lennox, and the end-credit song of the 2003 film The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. It is written and composed by Lennox, Return of the King producer and co-writer, Fran Walsh, and the film's composer Howard Shore.[1] The song plays in full during the closing credits of the 2003 film The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King,[1] although instrumental music from the song plays at other points during the film itself. The song was later covered by New Zealand singers Yulia Townsend and Will Martin and American singer Peter Hollens. In 2014, German a cappella Metal band van Canto performed a cover on their fifth studio album, Dawn of the Brave.[2]


The song was conceived as a bittersweet Elvish lament sung by Galadriel for those who have sailed across the Sundering Sea. Several phrases from the song are taken from the last chapter of The Return of the King.

In the commentaries and documentaries accompanying the extended DVD edition of the film, director Peter Jackson explains that the song wasn't inspired by Frodo, but by the premature death from cancer of young New Zealand filmmaker Cameron Duncan, whose work had impressed Jackson and his team. The first public performance of the song was at Duncan's funeral.[3]


The song has five different versions, in addition to the version used in the film (with the orchestral ending). Promos were made available in late November 2003.


The song won the Oscar for Best Original Song at the 76th Academy Awards,[1] one of the film's eleven wins. Lennox also performed the song live at the ceremony; coincidentally, Lennox's performance was one of several introduced by Liv Tyler, who appeared as Arwen in the film.

It also won a Grammy Award at the 47th Grammy Awards for Best Song Written for Visual Media.[4]

See also


  1. 1 2 3 4 Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 137. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  2. "Van Canto: 'Dawn Of The Brave' Album Preview". 16 January 2014. Retrieved 16 February 2014.
  3. Peter Jackson, Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens (2004). Director/Writers' Special Extended Edition commentary (DVD). New Line Cinema.
  4. Marsh, Stefanie (2005-02-15). "Oldies take gold at the Grammys". The Times. Retrieved 2010-01-04.
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