Mutant Mayhem’s Best Needle Drop Was A Challenge [Exclusive]

Though Rowe didn’t go into detail about what the legal challenges were, The Daily Beast’s oral history of the “Riff-Off” scene in “Pitch Perfect” — which concludes with Anna Kendrick rapping “No Diggity” — sheds more light on why this particular track is so difficult to clear. According to executive music producers Julia Michels and Julianne Jordan, one of the song’s writers was estranged from the rest of the band members, which caused great difficulty clearing “the last one percent” of the track. “It was such a drama,” said Michels, who explained that it came right down to the wire. “The day that we were shooting ‘No Diggity,’ that one percent was not cleared … I think it cleared while we were shooting — I think it was that close.”

The “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem” team was similarly unsure of whether they’d get clearance for “No Diggity,” so they tried other songs, including “Ruff Ryder’s Anthem” by DMX. “That’s the one that maybe got the closest,” Rowe continued. “But just nothing worked as well as ‘No Diggity,’ and we just had to commit to that.” Indeed, as Rowe told it, when the team watched the version of the film with the song in it, producers Ramsey McBean and Greg Levitan, and the editor “all looked at each other like, ‘This is electric, this is amazing. It’s got to be this.'” 

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