More than a year after the release of “Pitch Perfect,” the movie’s lead Anna Kendrick reaches No. 1 on Billboard’s Adult Contemporary radio airplay chart with “Cups (Pitch Perfect’s When I’m Gone),” which rises 2-1.
(All charts will refresh on Billboard.com on Thursday, Oct. 10.)
The honor is the latest in a long journey for the song. “Pitch Perfect” premiered in U.S. theaters on Sept. 28, 2012, and has since grossed $113 million in worldwide box office receipts. The film’s soundtrack rose to No. 3 on the Billboard 200 in February and has sold 912,000 copies in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan. “Cups” has sold 2.5 million downloads.
Originally, “Cups” was released in its almost all-a capella form, with only Kendrick’s vocals and her accompanying percussion courtesy of a plastic cup, as she performed the song in the movie. Once remixed with added instrumentation, the track became a multi-format hit, reaching No. 1 on Heatseekers Songs (its sole prior coronation), No. 2 on Adult Pop Songs and No. 6 on the Billboard Hot 100.
Kendrick is the first artist to take a first AC entry to No. 1 since the Lumineers reigned for eight weeks with “Ho Hey” beginning the week of May 4. She’s the first female to do so since Miley Cyrus sent maiden entry “The Climb” to the summit for 15 weeks in 2009.
With Kendrick, the Lumineers and Phillip Phillips (“Home,” 12 weeks at No. 1) all reaching the AC chart’s apex since January, 2013 is the first year to boast three rookie leaders since 2009, when Cyrus, Coldplay (“Viva La Vida,” one week) and Jason Mraz (“I’m Yours,” 16 weeks) all topped the tally on their first tries.
The secret to Kendrick’s success with “Cups”? Fellow actor Zach Braff recently direct-messaged her on Twitter to find out: “Please DM me how to do that cups thing. I keep spilling the beer all over my smock.”
Kendrick obliged: “You do like a clappy thing, and then like a tappy thing and then you throw some flour. Double platinum. Retire from music. Done.”