When Sting first was approached to write a song for Jim: The James Foley Story, he said, "I can't write a song about this. I cannot write a song. It's just too emotional, it's too intense. I think you've got the wrong guy."
"It was actually Thanksgiving, and I thought, 'What would it be like to lose a member of my family? To have a member of my family in captivity? Or to be that member of captivity? What would be the thing that could unify us?' and I thought, 'Well, we'd leave a chair empty for that person.' " From this, Sting was able to write the film's song, "The Empty Chair," he told The Hollywood Reporter during the Songwriter Oscar Roundtable.
More roundtables featuring actors and actresses, screenwriters, documentarians, directors, composers and producers will continue throughout February in print and online. Tune in to new episodes of Close Up With 'The Hollywood Reporter' starting Jan. 15 on Sundance TV, and look for clips at THR.com/topic/roundtables with full episodes on THR.com after broadcast.