In the 1988 film ‘Working Girl’ Melanie Griffith plays Tess McGill, a frustrated secretary from Staten Island who is trying to get ahead in the big business world of New York City. When her unscrupulous boss Katharine Parker (Sigourney Weaver) breaks a leg on a ski trip and asks Tess to “fill in”, Tess assumes Parker’s identity in order to reclaim an idea Parker had stolen from her, with the help of dashing executive Jack Trainer (Harrison Ford).

When Carly Simon read the script for Mike Nichols' ‘Working Girl’ she immediately "got the feeling" of the ferry boat coming from Staten Island.

According to an oral history of the film for ‘The Hollywood Reporter’, she said she felt "something hymnal about crossing the river." Her husband Jim Hart directed Simon to books from which she might draw inspiration, such as ‘Finnegan's Wake’, the first word of which is "Riverrun."

Simon wrote the song ‘Let the River Run’, which won an Oscar for “Best Original Song” in 1989, during a weekend trip on Martha's Vineyard. ‘Let the River Run’ was chosen as the opening song for the movie, narrowly edging out ‘Witchy Woman’ by the Eagles.

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