Hey Lionsgate–I’m Watching You

I promised that I would follow the story that I reported the other day about Lionsgate Picture’s apparent use of Ginny Owens’ “Be Thou My Vision” on the trailer for the upcoming release of Saw V.

This message was just posted on her website:

Friends: Sometime during the afternoon of Friday, July 25th, my voice on “Be Thou My Vision” was replaced by another singer.

The track still sounds nearly identical, and most websites continue to “credit” me for it, but the background music for the Saw V trailer is no longer my original version of “Be Thou My Vision.”


–Ginny Owens

So, to be clear, the person you hear singing on the Saw V trailer is not Ginny Owens, but someone who sounds very nearly like her.

Pretty slick, huh? As to the use of this hymn with a motion picture which depicts the dark and sadistic side of humanity in all its Technicolor gore, I’ll leave you to draw your own conclusions.

Is nothing sacred anymore? For some in this post-Christian, post-modern world of ours, apparently not.

And to the oily movie moguls at Lionsgate Studios and the other industry movers and shakers who viewed my post on their iPhones and Blackberrys Monday afternoon, I leave you with this thought:

I’m watching you.

But I think I’ll take a pass on your movie.

  1. Mike the Eyeguy

    Hi y’all:

    Referring Link No referring link
    Host Name host227.artisanent.com
    IP Address LIONSGATE [Edit Label]
    Country United States
    Region California
    City Santa Monica
    ISP Artisan Entertainment Inc
    Returning Visits 0
    Visit Length 0 seconds
    Browser MSIE 7.0
    Operating System Windows XP
    Resolution Unknown
    Javascript Enabled
    Navigation Path
    Date Time WebPage
    30th July 2008 12:24:55 No referring link

  2. JRB

    Perhaps they were hoping that no Christians in Nashville would go to the movies? My wife used to work with Ginny’s mom; they’re lovely, blessed people.

    I don’t think the studio is being terribly conspiratorial or manipulative; that would be giving them a lot of marketing credit. Instead, I think they decided to run the risk of using the song gratis, maybe even paying for it ex post, simply because of the narrative juxtaposition. Now, apparently, they have to construct an imitation, which may have cost them more.

    If they are courting controversy, I hope they do not get it. If they are not courting controversy but were just being sloppy, I hope it’s expensive.

  3. Mike the Eyeguy

    Oh good, I was hoping our resident legal eagle would chime in on this one with some timely Latin terms.

    You may be right, and I sure wouldn’t want to give them more credit than they deserve. As for the “narrative juxtaposition,” Numbers One and Two sons (who are somehow, someway familiar with the story arc here–go figure) explained to me over lunch today why the song “might, sorta” go along with the story–e.g. Jigsaw has this thing about playing God in people’s lives.

    I asked Number One if he thought Jigsaw might set a trap for me (I don’t know, maybe a endless PowerPoint presentation of “Jesus is my BFF” praise songs) now that I’ve spoken so ill of him.

    Number One reassured me probably not since I “wasn’t the type of person to take anyone or anything for granted.”

    I thought that was a very nice thing to say about his old man.

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