Ariana DeBose as Asha in Wish

‘Wish’ Songwriter Julia Michaels Shares the Story Behind That Amazing Breakout Song

Disney’s Wish is a sweet fairy tale with a lot of heart—and it has a breakout song, “This Wish,” that might make you cry. At a recent press conference, songwriter Julia Michaels shared how the plot of Wish informed the song long before the final version of the film came together.

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“The first song I wrote for the film was ‘This Wish,'” Michaels explained. “They gave me a paragraph with the plot of the film, and it was basically about this young woman who lives in a magical town with this king who isn’t all that he seems to be. And it’s her very selfless journey to get back all the wishes of the people in her town. I just loved the idea of this very normal, awkward, silly young woman becoming this brave, courageous person.”

Michaels and the rest of the creative team also talked about another number in Wish, “You’re a Star.” This song explores the fact—popularized by astronomer and writer Carl Sagan—that we’re all made of star-stuff.

“We’re all connected,” said writer and executive producer Julia Lee. “We’re all made of stardust. We’re all the same. We’re all made of the same minerals and material.”

“We had a lot of talks about how we’re all so deeply connected, even at times when you don’t feel like you are,” Michaels added. “That resonated, I think, with all of us, and it was obviously a very, very big task for me because we had to make ‘You’re a Star’ feel scientific, honest, vulnerable, and funny, all in the span of three minutes. We really tried to bring home the concept that we really are all made of the same things.”

Wish, which comes out in theaters on November 22, tells the story of Asha (Ariana DeBose), a young girl in the kingdom of Rosas who finds out that King Magnifico (Chris Pine) isn’t the benevolent ruler he seems to be. After she wishes on a star, Asha undertakes a quest to free the kingdom.

(featured image: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)

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Julia Glassman
Julia Glassman (she/her) holds an MFA from the Iowa Writers' Workshop, and has been covering feminism and media since 2007. As a staff writer for The Mary Sue, Julia covers Marvel movies, folk horror, sci fi and fantasy, film and TV, comics, and all things witchy. Under the pen name Asa West, she's the author of the popular zine 'Five Principles of Green Witchcraft' (Gods & Radicals Press). You can check out more of her writing at <a href=""></a>