'Where the Crawdads Sing' Director on Why Taylor Swift's 'Carolina' Was 'Perfect Fit'

The highly anticipated screen adaption of Delia Owens's best-selling novel Where the Crawdads Sing is finally here.

Starring Daisy Edgar-Jones as the marsh girl, Kya Clark, Where the Crawdads Sing tells a story of love, murder, bravery, isolation, resilience and more.

The movie has a whole host of women at the helm. It's directed by First Match's Olivia Newman, and Reese Witherspoon's production company Hello Sunshine backed the project, with Witherspoon serving as an executive producer.

To top it all off, in March 2022, Grammy-winning singer and songwriter Taylor Swift announced she had penned the song "Carolina" for the Where The Crawdads Sing end credits song. It was released on Friday, June 24, and is available to listen to now via Apple Music, Spotify and YouTube.

taylor swift carolina
Taylor Swift performs onstage during the 36th Annual Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame Induction Ceremony at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse on October 30, 2021, in Cleveland, Ohio. Swift penned the song "Carolina" for "Where The Crawdads Sing." Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

Speaking to Newsweek, director Olivia Newman revealed that Swift had written the song after reading the book herself and that she had approached Newman and Reese Witherspoon with the track after news of the book's screen-adaption broke.

In fact, the writing process was still ongoing and production hadn't yet begun with Swift having penned "Carolina."

Newman shared: "When she found out that Reese [Witherspoon] was producing a movie, she raised her hand and said, 'I'd really love to write a song.'

"We were working on a script, and we had not started production. So she wrote the song before we jumped into production, and it's hard to know exactly what song will be the perfect fit for it. But obviously, when I heard the song for the first time, I had an initial response to it, which was the same feeling when I finished the book and so I knew that was the feeling I wanted to leave the movie on so immediately I thought 'this is going to be a perfect fit for the end of the movie.'"

Newman also shared that after hearing Carolina for the first time, it was the only song she could think about when shooting the movie.

She recalled: "While we were shooting, I had that song in my head and I knew that that was sort of the emotional feeling that we were going end the movies with. It was done in reverse order than it usually is but because her music was just so honest, it was just such a perfect fit."

The lyrics to Carolina often mirror Kya's journey of growing up isolated in the North Carolina Marshes.

For example, the opening verse reads: "Carolina creeks/ Running through my veins/ Lost I was born, lonesome I came/ Lonesome I'll always stay."

Another verse may be a reference to Kya's absent mother, who fled her abusive husband when Kay was young.

"Carolina stains/ On the dress she left/ Indelible scars, pivotal marks/ Blue as the life she fled", Swift sings.

Fan of the Novel

In her March Instagram post introducing the song Carolina, Swift shared her admiration for Owens' novel and for the adaptation's star Edgar-Jones—as well as for Reese Witherspoon, who serves as a producer on the movie.

She also explained that she wrote the song alone and the track was produced by Aaron Dessner, who worked with Swift on her albums Folklore and Evermore.

Alongside the trailer, Swift wrote: "Where The Crawdads Sing is a book I got absolutely lost in when I read it years ago. As soon as I heard there was a film in the works starring the incredible @daisyedgarjones and produced by the brilliant @reesewitherspoon, I knew I wanted to be a part of it from the musical side. I wrote the song "Carolina" alone and asked my friend @aarondessner to produce it. I wanted to create something haunting and ethereal to match this mesmerizing story."

Where the Crawdads Sing is out in theaters now.