Greta Gerwig made Saoirse Ronan audition for Lady Bird even though she instantly knew the actress was the flawless choice. Gerwig used this as an opportunity to write the musicians directly and express what the songs meant to her and why she chose them. Some of those personal touches include music choices, like Justin Timberlake's breakup anthem "Cry Me a River".
As Meyers explained, filmmakers have to get permission from artists in order to use their song in a movie. On Monday night's Late Night with Seth Meyers, Gerwig shared the letter she sent Timberlake-and it's delightful from start (where she addresses him as "Mr. Timberlake") to finish (where she signs off "Your very honest fan, Greta Gerwig").
"You were the soundtrack to my adolescence", wrote Gerwig. Also amusing are the places in the note where Gerwig decides to underline: the word "owned" in the sentence "Your album Justified was that year, and it owned that year"; the words "full on make out" in "She finds him ready by the pool, and she gets her wish when they full on make out"; etc. She then says, "I pretty much wouldn't be an adult without you". Is it awkward? Is it TMI, considering she doesn't know Justin Timberlake? Who cares-because isn't it totally true and relatable? You can read Gerwig's complete letter to Timberlake below, and see her letters to Matthews and Morissette in the Late Night interview above.
The Frances Ha actress spent years working on the script for Lady Bird, which follows a 17-year-old girl navigating teenage life in the early 2000s, and Saoirse was one of the names brought up in one of her first meetings with her producers.