"Up Where We Belong" is a Platinum-certified, Grammy Award-winning hit song written by Jack Nitzsche, Buffy Sainte-Marie, and Will Jennings. It was recorded by Joe Cocker (lead vocals) and Jennifer Warnes (lead and background vocals) for the smash 1982 film An Officer and a Gentleman.
Richard Gere balked at shooting the ending of the film, in which Zack arrives at Paula's factory wearing his naval dress whites and carries her off the factory floor; he thought that wouldn't work because it was too sentimental. Director Taylor Hackford agreed with Gere until, during a rehearsal, the extras playing the workers began to cheer and cry. When Gere saw the scene later, with the music added ("Up Where We Belong"), he said it gave him chills. Gere is now convinced Hackford made the right decision.
The single, released by Island Records in 1982, hit #1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 on November 6, 1982 and held the top chart position for three consecutive weeks, also reaching number 7 in the UK Singles Chart. It was certified Platinum by the RIAA for sales of over two million copies in the United States.
"Up Where We Belong" won the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song and the Academy Award for Best Original Song in 1983. It also won the BAFTA Film Awards for Best Original Song in 1984. Cocker and Warnes also won the Grammy Award for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal in 1983 for their rendition of this song. In 2004 it finished at #75 in AFI's 100 Years...100 Songs survey of top tunes in American cinema.
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