“Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now” is a song co-written by Albert Hammond and Diane Warren, recorded by the American rock band Starship in 1986. It is a duet featuring Starship vocalists Grace Slick and Mickey Thomas. Featured as the theme to the romantic comedy film Mannequin, it hit No. 1 in the Billboard Hot 100 on April 4, 1987, and reached No. 1 on the UK Singles Chart for four weeks the following month and became the UK’s second-biggest-selling single of 1987. The song also reached the top 10 in six European countries. The single became the first number one single by songwriter Diane Warren. At the time, it made Grace Slick (aged 47) the oldest woman to have a number-one single in the United States though the record was later broken by Cher’s “Believe” in 1999 (aged 52).
The power ballad also received an Academy Award nomination for “Best Original Song” at the 60th Academy Awards. In addition to appearing on the Mannequin soundtrack, the song was also released on Starship’s album No Protection in July 1987. The music video was released in late 1986 to promote Mannequin.
In a radio interview, Albert Hammond said that the idea for the song came from his impending marriage to his live-in girlfriend of seven years, after his divorce from his previous wife was finalized. He had said to Diane Warren, “It’s almost like they’ve stopped me from marrying this woman for seven years, and they haven’t succeeded. They’re not gonna stop me doing it.” The song has been considered “feel good” propelled by a strong synthesizer beat.
A music video (released in 1987) was produced for the song. It shows Mickey Thomas pursuing a mannequin come to life, played by Grace Slick, wrapped around footage from the film. Meshach Taylor, who plays window dresser Hollywood Montrose in the film, makes a cameo. It has more than 35 million views on YouTube as of March 12, 2018.
The song had played a major role in 1993 for the Montreal Canadiens NHL team during their 24th conquest of the Stanley Cup. While driving home after a lost game, head coach Jacques Demers heard the song playing on the radio and realized it was an empowering song. The next day, he brought to the Montreal Forum a cassette tape with the song on it and distributed among players a small card saying “We’re on a mission, nothing’s gonna stop us”. They soon started to win. He played the song throughout all the playoff games and they eventually won the Stanley Cup that year, over Wayne Gretzky and the Los Angeles Kings in the Finals.
In 2006, the song was used in the Family Guy episode, Mother Tucker. In a cutaway gag, the song plays when Peter Griffin watches a VHS tape supposedly containing The Ring, despite being warned that he would die if he did so. It turns out that the tape was actually a copy of Mannequin. The song continues to play as Peter is shown collapsed sideways on the floor with his eyes crossed, mouth gaping, and hair disheveled.
In 2013, the song was used in an advertising campaign by UK telecommunication company Talk Talk. As a result, on September 8, 2013 (Sunday), it charted at number 39 on the Official UK Chart.
In the 2014 film, The Skeleton Twins, a brother and sister, Milo and Maggie (played by Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig) lip-sync the song together.
The song was licensed for use in a commercial for Chick-fil-A that first aired during the 59th Annual Grammy Awards in February 2017. Grace Slick later wrote that she agreed to the licensing so she could donate her proceeds to Lambda Legal “in direct opposition to Chick-fil-A’s causes” against the LGBTQ community.
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