Tim McGraw said it was a magical experience producing the song “Keep Your Eyes on Me” for his new film, “The Shack.”
Based on William Paul Young’s bestselling novel, the story follows Mack Phillips, played by Sam Worthington, whose youngest daughter is kidnapped and killed.
Tim McGraw has a role in the movie as Mack’s best friend, Willie. He said Octavia Spencer, who plays God in the movie, was a perfect choice.
“I’ve met her in person a couple of times and she just glows. She just has such a beauty about her and an inner peace and rest about her. She just exudes that. I think she was just so perfect for this film.
“When I die and if I’m able to go to heaven, if I saw Octavia Spencer sitting there and say ‘Hello, welcome,’ I’m going to be a happy man,” laughed McGraw.
McGraw and Hill worked together to compose an original song for the film. He said they both got emotional watching a cut of the film.
“Six or seven times in the film we were just flooded with tears,” said McGraw.
As they worked on coming up with the concept for the song, he and Hill agreed there was one moment that was overwhelmingly powerful in the movie.
“In every one of our notes, the biggest note that we had was ‘keep your eyes on me,'” recalled McGraw. “And it came back to the simplicity of finding a mantra that can get you through hard times.”
McGraw said their song matches the arc of the movie.
“We had the pain in the beginning of the song and then the redemption and the light and the beauty at the end with the choir and with Faith doing those majestic things that she was doing at the end of it,” said McGraw. “It was a lot of fun to go through that process.”
McGraw said being a part of the film helped inform his musical decision for the record.
“Knowing what the feeling was like on the set of the movie and sort of the thought process that everyone was going through about what this film was about and how it made you feel,” said McGraw. “I think everyone felt that on set.”
“The Shack” is playing in theaters now.