Megan Thee Stallion joined the ‘Encanto’ family at the 2022 Oscars with a surprise performance.
The animated film’s hit song “We Don’t Talk About Bruno” was performed at the ceremony despite not being eligible for an Oscar nomination. (The film’s nominated song “Dos Oruguitas” was submitted for Academy consideration over “Bruno.”)
Bruno himself (John Leguizamo) introduced his Encanto “family” to the stage and sing the top-streamed Disney song. Carolina Gaintán opened the song alongside Mauro Castillo before other Encanto stars — Stephanie Beatriz, Adassa, Diane Guerrero and Rhenzy Feliz — joined in.
In one of the night’s biggest surprises, three-time Grammy winner Megan Thee Stallion added her own rap verse to the Disney hit, including lines about the 2022 Oscars ceremony. She name-checked one ultra-famous Euphoria and Spider-Man: No Way Home star with the line: “Stars everywhere, I need to see Oscars, Zendaya over there.”
Encanto director Jared Bush said in the press room afterward that the performance was “amazing,” adding that he wasn’t in on the special appearance either!
“I’d say they kept a lot of secrets from us,” he continued. “We knew there was going to be something unexpected, but I absolutely loved it. Different people have found themselves in this story. Seeing Megan Thee Stallion do it was mind-blowing.”
The song’s virality scored it a place on the 2022 show — after Encanto’s release, it steadily climbed the charts before claiming the top spot. During that climb, it surpassed the massive 2013 hit “Let It Go” from Frozen, which peaked at No. 5.
When it topped the Billboard Hot 100, “Bruno” became only the second Disney animated film to achieve the feat. (“A Whole New World” from Aladdin was the first in 1992.)
Encanto also became the first movie soundtrack to reach the top of the Billboard Hot 200 since Frozen II in 2019, also dethroning Adele’s 30 after six weeks of leading the charts.
Writer Lin-Manuel Miranda, 42, previously told PEOPLE he wasn’t expecting the song’s success. “I’m surprised it’s ‘Bruno,'” he said.
Oscars producer Will Packer explained how the song was chosen for a live slot at the Oscars during a Thursday press conference.
“I feel like this is my ‘Send in the Clowns,’ which was the late Stephen Sondheim’s biggest hit and probably the most random of an incredible career and life-making music. But I’ll take it!” Miranda added.
“Think about something like ‘We Don’t Talk About Bruno.’ If there is a song that unites people this year that is kind of the epitome to me of what movies can do because people of all stripes ages, colors, ethnicities, backgrounds around the world were singing that song ad nauseum,” he said. “And we’re going to help them out so they sing it a little bit more.”
He joked, “Our apologies to the parents.”
In more behind-the-scenes trivia about “Bruno,” Miranda previously revealed that the only child who isn’t in love with the tune is his son Sebastian, 7, whom he shares with wife Vanessa Nadal. The couple are also parents to 3-year-old son Francisco.
“My son came home from school today and he was like, ‘Daddy, everyone’s singing it,'” Miranda said. “He’s both proud and like, ‘All right, already.’ Because remember, he heard that song last May. He’s way over it.”
Encanto has been championed for its Latin representation, telling the story of the Madrigals, an extraordinary family living hidden in the mountains of Colombia, where the magic that has gifted every child in their line is in danger.
The 2022 Oscars are airing Sunday from Hollywood’s Dolby Theatre on ABC, and Encanto is now streaming on Disney+.
Watch Megan’s performance below.
— sweetest chrissy ? (@sznhottie) March 28, 2022