Summary of “How the Cover Song Conquered Movie Trailers”

Every story, as movie trailers never tire of informing us, has a beginning.
The story of the cover-song trend in movie trailers began nine years ago, when the veteran trailer editor Mark Woollen found himself grappling with a difficult assignment.
If you screen Woollen’s best-known work on YouTube, it’s obvious how he’s influenced the way that movie trailers look.
His “Social Network” trailer quickly became a profound influence on how movie trailers sound.
The auditory signature of the modern movie trailer is a deliberately eerie cover version of a recognizable pop song, usually sung at a dramatically slower tempo, often by a breathy female vocalist whose delivery suggests a ghost beckoning a living playmate from the far end of a haunted-house hallway.
The pop cover conveys two very different promises that a blockbuster-movie trailer has to make inside of an M.P.A.A.-mandated two minutes or less: that this movie will be intense and dark and modern and unlike anything that we’ve ever seen before and that it won’t be too unlike what we’ve seen before, that ultimately we’ll walk away having got whatever spiritual comfort we’re looking for by buying a ticket to another movie about Lara Croft or Godzilla.
In the years since this kind of trailer became omnipresent, the trailer cover song has increasingly come to serve a narrative function, repurposing the text of a song to explain a movie’s plot, often in thuddingly literal ways.
In 1969, the mere presence of acid-rock music in the background of a movie trailer was a big deal; the visually pummelling trailers of today demand something bigger than rock, a reimagining of pop music that fires all of its guns at once and explodes into space.

The orginal article.