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Billie Eilish talks having a “dark episode” before writing ‘Barbie’ song ‘What Was I Made For?’

Billie Eilish has recalled going through a “dark episode” before writing ‘What Was I Made For?’, her song for the Barbie soundtrack.

The song was released back in July as part of the highly anticipated film’s official soundtrack, and has been nominated for Best Original Song at the 2024 Oscars alongside Dua Lipa, Olivia Rodrigo and more.

Last night (January 4), the song won the Chairman’s Award at the Palm Springs Film Festival, and Eilish spoke of the difficulties she had before writing the song during her acceptance speech.

“I would really like to say that this award and any recognition that this song gets, I just want to dedicate to anyone who experiences hopelessness, the feeling of existential dread and feeling like, what’s the point, why am I here and why am I doing this?” Eilish said.

“I think we all feel like that occasionally, but I think if somebody like me, with the amount of privilege that I have and the incredible things that I get to do and be and how I have really not wanted to be here … sorry to be dark, damn, but I’ve spent a lot of time feeling that way.”

Billie Eilish CREDIT: Jack Bridgland

She added: “I just want to say to anyone that feels that way, be patient with yourself and know that it is, I think, worth it all.

Eilish went on to discuss how she “was in a dark episode and things didn’t make sense in life” when she was asked to write a song for Barbie. “I just didn’t understand what the point was and why you would keep going. [I was] questioning everything in the world.”

She and brother Finneas then went and watched half an hour of footage from the film before making their decision, she revealed. “Basically I was just watching Barbie say and feel things that I really, really, really resonated with and felt so close to. I felt so seen, and I did not expect that,” she said.

“I think that this movie is the most incredible, most empowering and beautiful and funny and just unbelievable piece of art in the world, and I’m so honoured to be a part of it.”

Speaking about her depression in 2019, Eilish said: “I remember at the beginning, there were all these labels and radio people that wouldn’t play me because I was too sad and no one was going to relate to it.

“Everybody has felt sad in their lives and of course it’s really important to promote happiness and loving yourself – but a lot of people don’t love themselves.”

Of ‘What Was I Made For?’, Eilish said last month that she believes the song features one of her “best vocal performances I’ve ever given”.

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