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Today in Hip-Hop: Eminem’s “Lose Yourself” Wins an Academy Award for Best Original Song

On this day, March 23, in hip-hop history…

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2003: On March 23, 2003, Eminem became the first hip-hop artist to win an Academy Award for Best Original Song. The Detroit rhymer was nominated for his song “Lose Yourself,” which was featured in Curtis Hanson-directed 2002 biopic about Em titled 8 Mile. 8 Mile‘s “Lose Yourself” was up against “I Move On” from Chicago, “Burn It Blue” from Frida, “The Hands that Build America” from Gangs of New York and “Father and Daughter” from The Wild Thornberrys Movie. As a surprise winner of the night, Detroit producer Jeff Bass accepted the award. Unfortunately, Eminem himself slept through the Hollywood ceremony and wasn’t there to accept his golden statue.

The song itself, produced by Eminem and frequent collaborator Jeff Bass of Bass Brothers fame, went on to sell 5,000,000 copies as of 2012. The RIAA has since certified it quadruple platinum. The song also won the Grammy Award for Best Rap Song and Best Rap Solo Performance the following year at the 2004 Grammys. To this day, the storytelling of “Lose Yourself” is one of Em’s most successful singles, landing on numerous “Best Tracks” lists.

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