Milli Vanilli (2023) Ending Explained – Did Milli Vanilli give their Grammy back?

Milli Vanilli Plot Summary

Milli Vanilli is a name that comes with infamy. For a few years, from the late 1980’s into the early 1990’s, they shot to the top of the pop charts with hit songs like “Blame it on the Rain” and “Girl You Know It’s True.” But it would all come crashing down when they were exposed for not actually singing a single note on their albums, and the vocals were provided by other session singers.


Who was in Milli Vanilli?

Milli Vanilli blew up overseas in Germany before making it big in America. The duo consisted of Fab Morvan and Rob Pilatus. Both were guys yearning for success and fame in the entertainment industry. They were models, back-up dancers, and singers who stumbled across music producer Frank Farian, who would con them into lip-syncing over some songs recorded by other singers. Morvan and Pilatus would be packaged as the faces of the band Milli Vanilli, even though it was not their actual voices in the songs.

This wasn’t the first time producer Frank Farian had done this. He had produced a musical act called Boney M in the 1970’s. It was not his actual vocals on the tracks. So this was not the first time Farian had become a regular at exploiting black artists over the years.


How did Milli Vanilli get big?

Milli Vanilli’s music began to soar up the charts in Germany, and in true fashion, what’s big overseas can eventually make its way over to America. This was something Farian didn’t want, but Morvan and Pilatus thoroughly enjoyed it. But as big as they got in America, the band began to be on limited time in their success in the music business. They would sign a record deal with Clive Davis and go on nonstop promotional tours. Milli Vanilli, for a brief time, was just about everywhere.

Yet, the bigger they got, the more the ground got shaky. It had become clear that behind the scenes they were a lip sync band to their backup performers and touring band. And then it finally happened: their back-up track while performing began to skip at live shows. The infamous footage of them performing “Girl You Know It’s True,” repeating the chorus over and over, and Rob and Fab running off stage


What contributed to the beginning of the end?

Despite the rumors going around the industry that the duo lip synced, their manager ended up trying to get them a Grammy nomination for Best New Artist. The rumors had started to turn into actual evidence between industry heads that there was more to them than met the eye with their talent. They got the nomination from financial help on a backdoor deal and were told to “bring it” on their performance.

By Grammy night, word got out about their lip syncing and that it wasn’t their voice. There is even footage of Ozzy Osbourne rolling his eyes at them in the crowd during their performance. And as fate would have it, so to speak, they would win the award for Best New Artist. And with that Grammy win, their days were numbered.


Did Milli Vanilli give their Grammy back?

Months later, Milli Vanilli would own up to the press and the accusations around the industry about them not singing a note on their album. They were the only act to win a Grammy and then give it back. From there, they attempted a few comebacks but eventually drifted away into obscurity. The story gets tragic by decades end, as Rob Pilatus would die of a drug overdose. Fab, in his intimate interviews, discusses Rob’s downfall with his childhood demons getting the best of him during the fallout from the duo.

The ending gives a bit more of an empathetic look to the situation than making Milli Vanilli a punch line in the music industry. As one of the music journalists likes to say in it, “No crimes were committed because of this, but a life was lost.”

 

 

Read More: Milli Vanilli Movie Review


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