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Encyclopedia > Film score

A film score is a set of musical compositions written to accompany a film. Some films use popular music as the primary musical component, but an orchestral score is more often preferred. An orchestral score can be much more closely adapted to a film while popular music is most often based upon a strong and repetitive rhythm that is inflexible and cannot be easily adapted to a scene. Popular genres of music also tend to date quickly as styles rapidly evolve while orchestral music tends to age much more gracefully. Instead, popular music may be included for special occasions where more attention must be diverted to the music. In these cases, songs are usually not written specifically for the film (see soundtrack). Musical composition is a phrase used in a number of contexts, the most commonly used being a piece of music. ... This article is about motion pictures. ... For the music genre, see Pop music. ... Rhythm (Greek = flow, or in Modern Greek, style) is the variation of the length and accentuation of a series of sounds or other events. ... In film formats, the soundtrack is the physical area of the film which records the synchronized sound. ...

Contents

Process of creation

Theme of Ben-Hur Image File history File links Ben-hur_by_Miklós_Rózsa. ...

composed by Miklós Rózsa

Problems listening to the file? See media help. Miklós Rózsa (IPA: ) or Miklos Rozsa (April 18, 1907 - July 27, 1995) was a Hungarian-born composer, best known for his film scores, most notably the score to the 1959 epic Ben-Hur. ...

Usually, after the film has been shot (or some shooting has been completed), the composer is shown an unpolished "rough cut" of the film (or of the scenes partially finished), and talks to the director about what sort of music (styles, themes, etc.) should be used — this process is called "spotting." More rarely, the director will talk to the composer before starting shooting, as to give more time to the composer or because the director needs to shoot scenes (namely song or dance scenes) according to the final score. Sometimes the director will have edited the film using "temp (temporary) music": already published pieces that are similar to what the director wants. Most film composers strongly dislike temp music, as directors often become accustomed to it and push the composers to be imitators rather than creators. On certain occasions, directors have become so attached to the temp score that they decided to use it and reject the score custom-made by a composer. One of the most famous cases is Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey, where Kubrick opted for existing recordings of classical works rather than the score by Alex North, which eventually led to a law suit by composer György Ligeti when he was surprised to hear his compositions in a motion film; though one should note Kubrick hired two composer (the other Frank Cordell) to do a score, and while North's 2001 is indeed a famous example, it is not the sole example of well known rejected scores. Others include Torn Curtain (Bernard Herrmann), Troy (Gabriel Yared), and for even for The Bourne Identity (Carter Burwell). Site dedicated to rejected scores: click Kubrick redirects here. ... Alex North (December 4, 1910 - September 8, 1991) was an American composer responsible for the first jazz based film score (A Streetcar Named Desire) and the first truly modernist film score (Viva Zapata!). Born Isadore Soifer in Chester, Pennsylvania, Alex North was an original composer probably even by the classical... “Ligeti” redirects here. ... Torn Curtain DVD cover Torn Curtain is a 1966 thriller film directed by Alfred Hitchcock, featuring his trademark characters and camera techniques. ... Troy is an Oscar-nominated movie released on May 14, 2004 about the Trojan War, as described in Homers Iliad, Virgils Aeneid, and other Greek myths. ... The Bourne Identity is a 2002 movie based on the book of the same name by Robert Ludlum. ...

The Good, The Bad And The Ugly main theme Image File history File links Ennio_Morricone-The_Good,_The_Bad_And_The_Ugly. ...

From The Good, the Bad and the Ugly soundtrack by Ennio Morricone

Problems listening to the file? See media help. Ennio Morricone (born November 10, 1928; sometimes also credited as Dan Savio or Leo Nichols) is an Italian composer especially noted for his film scores. ...

Once a composer has the film, they will then work on creating the score. While some composers prefer to work with traditional paper scores, many film composers write in a computer-based environment. This allows the composer and orchestrator to create MIDI-based demos of themes and cues, called MIDI mockups, for review by the filmmaker prior to the final orchestral recording. Some films are then re-edited to better fit the music. Instances of this include the collaborations between filmmaker Godfrey Reggio and composer Philip Glass, where over several years the score and film are edited multiple times to better suit each other. Arguably the most successful instances of these are the associations between Sergio Leone and Ennio Morricone. In the finale of The Good, The Bad and The Ugly, Morricone had prepared the score used before and Leone edited the scenes to match it. His other two famous films, Once Upon a Time in the West and Once Upon a Time in America, were completely edited to Morricone's score as the composer had prepared it months before the film's production. Another example is the famous chase scene in Steven Spielberg's E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial. The score, composed by long-time collaborator John Williams, proved so difficult to synchronize in this specific scene during the recording sessions that, as recounted in a companion documentary on the DVD, Spielberg gave Williams a blank check so to speak and asked him to record the cue without picture, freely; Spielberg then re-edited the scene later on to perfectly match the music. Orchestration is the study or practice of writing music for orchestra (or, more loosely, for any musical ensemble) or of adapting for orchestra music composed for another medium. ... There are very few or no other articles that link to this one. ... Polaroid by Michael Dare Godfrey Reggio (born March 29, 1940) is an American director of experimental documentary films. ... Philip Glass (born January 31, 1937) is a three-times Academy Award-nominated American composer. ... Sergio Leone (January 3, 1929 – April 30, 1989) was an Italian film director. ... Ennio Morricone (born November 10, 1928; sometimes also credited as Dan Savio or Leo Nichols) is an Italian composer especially noted for his film scores. ... The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (Italian: ) is a 1966 Italian epic spaghetti Western directed by Sergio Leone, starring Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef and Eli Wallach in the title roles. ... The references in this article would be clearer with a different and/or consistent style of citation, footnoting or external linking. ... Once Upon a Time in America (Italian title Cera una volta in America) (1984) is the last film by director Sergio Leone, and features Robert De Niro and James Woods as Jewish ghetto youths who rise to prominence in New York Citys world of organized crime. ... Steven Spielberg (born December 18, 1946)[1] is an American film director and producer. ... For the Atari 2600 video game based on the movie, see E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (Atari 2600). ... For other persons named John Williams, see John Williams (disambiguation). ...

Music from Naqoyqatsi Image File history File links Philip_Glass-Naqoyqatsi. ...

Problems listening to the file? See media help. Naqoyqatsi: ÉÀ ... Philip Glass (born January 31, 1937) is a three-times Academy Award-nominated American composer. ...

When the music has been composed and orchestrated, the orchestra or ensemble then perform it, often with the composer conducting. Musicians for these ensembles are often uncredited in the film or on the album and are contracted individually (and if so, the orchestra contractor is credited in the film or the soundtrack album). However, some films have recently begun crediting the contracted musicians on the albums under the name Hollywood Studio Symphony after an agreement with the American Federation of Musicians. Other performing ensembles that are often employed include the London Symphony Orchestra, the City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra (an orchestra dedicated exclusively to recording), and the Northwest Sinfonia. Orchestration is the study or practice of writing music for orchestra (or, more loosely, for any musical ensemble) or of adapting for orchestra music composed for another medium. ... The Hollywood Studio Symphony is the credited name of the symphony orchestra behind many major soundtracks, including The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, Spider-Man 2, and Lost (TV series). ... The American Federation of Musicians (AFM) is a labor union of professional musicians in the United States and Canada. ... The London Symphony Orchestra (LSO) is one of the major orchestras of the United Kingdom. ...


The orchestra performs in front of a large screen depicting the movie, and sometimes to a series of clicks called a "click-track" that changes with meter and tempo, assisting the conductor to synchronize the music with the film. Metre or meter (US) is the measurement of a musical line into measures of stressed and unstressed beats, indicated in Western music notation by a symbol called a time signature. ...

"Main Title from Star Wars" (1977) Image:John Williams Main Title from Star Wars.ogg

Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope

Problems listening to the file? See media help.

Films often have different themes for important characters, events, ideas or objects, taking the idea from Wagner's use of leitmotif. These may be played in different variations depending on the situation they represent, scattered amongst incidental music. A famous example of this technique is John Williams' score for the Star Wars saga, and the numerous themes associated with characters like Darth Vader, Luke Skywalker, and Princess Leia (see Star Wars music for more details). Pirates of the Caribbean has similar traditions, such as a regular music theme when introducing the character Captain Jack Sparrow. Others are less known by casual moviegoers, but well known among score enthusiasts, such as Jerry Goldsmith's underlying theme for the Borg in Star Trek:First Contact, or his Klingon theme from Star Trek: The Motion Picture which other composers carry over into their Klingon motifs, and he has brought back on numerous occasions as the theme for Worf, Star Trek: The Next Generation's most prominent Klingon. Richard Wagner Wilhelm Richard Wagner (22 May 1813 – 13 February 1883) was a German composer, conductor, music theorist, and essayist, primarily known for his operas (or music dramas as they were later called). ... A leitmotif (IPA pronunciation: ) (also leitmotiv; lit. ... Williams conducting the London Symphony Orchestra during the recording of the score for Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. ... Darth Vader is a fictional character in the Star Wars universe. ... Luke Skywalker is a fictional character in the Star Wars universe, portrayed by Mark Hamill in the films Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope, Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back, and Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi. ... Her Royal Highness, Princess Leia Organa of Alderaan (born in 19 BBY), born Leia Amidala Skywalker, is a fictional character in the Star Wars universe played by Aiden Barton in Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, actress Carrie Fisher in Star Wars: Episodes IV-VI, and by Ann... Recent re-release of John Williams compositions for A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi. ... Pirates of the Caribbean is a multi-billion dollar Walt Disney franchise encompassing a theme park ride, a series of films and spinoff novels as well as numerous video games and other publications. ... Captain is a rank or title with various meanings. ... Jack Sparrow is a fictional character from the Pirates of the Caribbean universe who is portrayed by Johnny Depp. ... Look up Borg in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Star Trek: The Motion Picture (Paramount Pictures, 1979; see also 1979 in film) is the first feature film based on the popular Star Trek science fiction television series and is released on Friday, December 7. ... Worf, played by Michael Dorn, is a main character in both Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, and also the films based on The Next Generation. ... The title as it appeared in most episodes opening credits. ...


Most films have between forty and seventy-five minutes of music. However, some films have very little or no music; others may feature a score that plays almost continuously throughout. Dogme 95 is a genre that has music only from sources within a film, such as from a radio or television. This is called "source music" because it comes from an on screen source that can actually be seen or that can be inferred (in academic film theory such music is called "diegetic" music, as it emanates from the "diegesis" or "story world"). Dogme 95 (in English: Dogma 95) is an avant-garde filmmaking movement started in 1995 by the Danish directors Lars von Trier, Thomas Vinterberg, Kristian Levring, and Søren Kragh-Jacobsen. ... Film theory debates the essence of the cinema and provides conceptual frameworks for analyzing, among other things, the film image, narrative structure, the function of film artists, the relationship of film to reality, and the film spectators position in the cinematic experience. ... In diegesis the author tells the story. ... According to Gerald Prince in A Dictionary of Narratology, diegesis is (1) The (fictional) world in which the situations and events narrated occur; (2) Telling, recounting, as opposed to showing, enacting. ...


In 1983 a non-profit organization, the Society for the Preservation of Film Music, was actually formed to preserve the "byproducts" of creating a film score: the music manuscripts (written music) and other documents and studio recordings generated in the process of composing and recording scores which, in some instances, have been discarded by the movie studios. The written music must be kept in order to perform the music on concert programs and to make new recordings of it. Sometimes only after decades has an archival recording of a film score been released on CD. The Society for the Preservation of Film Music, Inc. ...


Artistic merit

The artistic merits of film music are frequently debated. Some critics value it highly, pointing to music such as that written by Erich Wolfgang Korngold, Aaron Copland, Bernard Herrmann, and others. Some consider film music to be a defining genre of classical music in the late 20th century, if only because it is the brand of classical music heard more often than any other. In some cases, film themes have become accepted into the canon of classical music. These are mostly works from already noted composers who have done scores, for instance Sergei Prokofiev's score to Alexander Nevsky or Vaughan Williams' score to Scott of the Antarctic. Others see the great bulk of film music as meritless. They consider that much film music is derivative, borrowing heavily from previous works. Composers of film scores typically can produce about three or four per year. The most popular works by composers such as John Williams and Danny Elfman are still far from entering the accepted canon. Even so, considering they are often the most popular modern compositions of classical music known to the general public, major orchestras sometimes perform concerts of such music. Korngold conducting the Warner Brothers studio orchestra (Rhino Records) Erich Wolfgang Korngold (May 29, 1897 – November 29, 1957) was a 20th century romantic composer. ... Aaron Copland Aaron Copland (November 14, 1900 – December 2, 1990) was an American composer of concert and film music, as well as an accomplished pianist. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... (19th century - 20th century - 21st century - more centuries) Decades: 1900s 1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s As a means of recording the passage of time, the 20th century was that century which lasted from 1901–2000 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar (1900–1999... Classical music is a broad, somewhat imprecise term, referring to music produced in, or rooted in the traditions of, European art, ecclesiastical and concert music, encompassing a broad period from roughly 1000 to the present day. ... Sergei Sergeyevich Prokofiev (Russian: , Sergej Sergejevič Prokofijev; April 27 (April 151 O.S.), 1891–March 5, 1953) was a Russian and Soviet composer who mastered numerous musical genres and came to be admired as one of the greatest composers of the 20th century. ... For other uses, see Alexander Nevsky (disambiguation). ... A statue of Ralph Vaughan Williams in Dorking. ... Scott of the Antarctic was a 1948 film about Robert Falcon Scotts explorations of Antartica. ... For other persons named John Williams, see John Williams (disambiguation). ... Daniel Robert Elfman (born May 29, 1953 in Los Angeles, California) is an American musician who led the rock band Oingo Boingo as singer / songwriter from 1976 until its breakup in 1995, and has composed film scores extensively since 1985s Pee-wees Big Adventure. ...


Historical notes

Before the age of sound motion pictures, great effort was taken to provide suitable music for films, usually through the services of an in-house pianist or organist, and, in some case, entire orchestras, typically given cue sheets as a guide. In 1914, The Oz Film Manufacturing Company sent full-length scores by Louis F. Gottschalk for their films. Other examples of this include Victor Herbert's score in 1915 to Fall of a Nation (a sequel to Birth of a Nation) and Camille Saint-Saëns' music for L'Assassinat du duc de Guise in 1908 — arguably the very first in movie history. It was preceded by Nathaniel D. Mann's score for The Fairylogue and Radio-Plays by four months, but that was a mixture of interrelated stage and film performance in the tradition of old magic lantern shows. Most accompaniments at this time, these examples notwithstanding, comprised pieces by famous composers, also including studies. These were often used to form catalogues of film music, which had different subsections broken down by 'mood' and/or genre: dark, sad, suspense, action, chase, etc. This made things much easier for the in-house pianists and orchestras to pick pieces that fitted the particular feel of a movie and its scenes. The Oz Film Manufacturing Company was an independent film studio from 1914-1915. ... Louis Ferdinand Gottschalk (October 7, 1864 - July 15, 1934) was an American composer born in St. ... Victor Herbert Victor August Herbert (February 1, 1859–May 26, 1924) was a popular composer of light opera, and an accomplished cellist and conductor. ... Charles Camille Saint-Saëns () (9 October 1835 – 16 December 1921) was a French composer, organist, conductor, and pianist, known especially for his orchestral works The Carnival of the Animals, Danse Macabre, and Symphony No. ... The Fairylogue and Radio-Plays was an early attempt to bring L. Frank Baums Oz books to the screen. ... The magic lantern or Laterna Magica was the ancestor of the modern slide projector. ...


A full film score widely regarded as the first made by a popular artist came in 1973 with the film Pat Garret and Billy the Kid, by Bob Dylan. However the album received very little critical acclaim. This had not been done before in popular film history: any featured band had films written around the music (notably The Beatles with Yellow Submarine). This article is about the recording artist. ... The White Album, see The Beatles (album). ...


Orchestral soundtracks

This list includes soundtracks that are mostly or entirely orchestral, with few songs. Notable composers of orchestral soundtracks include Nino Rota, Basil Poledouris, John Williams, Bernard Herrmann, Jerry Goldsmith, Rachel Portman, James Horner, Alan Silvestri, Howard Shore, James Newton Howard, Randy Newman, Michael Kamen, Alan Menken, Hans Zimmer, Gaili Schoen, Elmer Bernstein, Dimitri Tiomkin, Bill Conti, Mark Isham, Ennio Morricone, Trevor Rabin, Patrick Doyle, Michael Giacchino, John Debney, and Danny Elfman. Composers Philip Glass and Prokofiev are also noted for their film music. Image File history File links Unbalanced_scales. ... Image File history File links Emblem-important. ... A film soundtrack is the music that is from or inspired by a feature film. ... Nino Rota (December 3, 1911 – April 10, 1979) was an Italian composer best known for his work on film scores, notably The Godfather series and the films of Federico Fellini. ... Basil Poledouris (Greek: Βασίλης Πολεδούρης) (August 21, 1945 - November 8, 2006) was an American film composer. ... For other persons named John Williams, see John Williams (disambiguation). ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Jerrald King Goldsmith (February 10, 1929 – July 21, 2004) was a famous American film score composer from Los Angeles, California. ... Rachel Portman (born December 11, 1960 in Haslemere, England) is a British composer, best known for her film work. ... James Roy Horner (born August 14, 1953) is an American composer of orchestral and film music. ... Alan Silvestri (b. ... Howard Leslie Shore (born October 18, 1946) is an Oscar, Golden Globe and Grammy Award-winning Canadian composer, best known for composing the scores to The Lord of the Rings film trilogy and films of David Cronenberg. ... This article is about James Howard, the composer. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Michael Kamen (April 15, 1948 – November 18, 2003) was an American composer (especially of film scores), orchestral arranger, orchestral conductor, song writer, and session musician. ... Alan Menken (born July 22, 1949) is an American Broadway and Academy Award winning film score composer. ... Hans Florian Zimmer (born September 12, 1957) is an Academy Award, Grammy, and Golden Globe award-winning film score composer from Germany. ... Gaili Schoen (born in Venice, California) is an American film composer. ... Elmer Bernstein (pronounced Bern-steen[1]) (April 4, 1922 – August 18, 2004) was an Academy and two-time Golden Globe award winning American film score composer. ... Dimitri Zinovievich Tiomkin (Russian: , Dmitrij Zinovevič Tëmkin, somtimes translated as Dmitri Tiomkin) (May 10, 1894 – November 11, 1979) was a film composer and conductor. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Mark Isham (b. ... Ennio Morricone (born November 10, 1928; sometimes also credited as Dan Savio or Leo Nichols) is an Italian composer especially noted for his film scores. ... Trevor Rabin onstage with Yes, 1995 Trevor Rabin (born Trevor Charles Rabin on January 13, 1954) is a South African guitarist and film composer, best known for being the guitarist and songwriter for the progressive rock band Yes from 1983 - 1995, and since then, as a film composer. ... Patrick Doyle (born April 6, 1953, Uddingston, South Lanarkshire, Scotland) is an Academy Award nominated Scottish musician and film score composer. ... Michael Giacchino Michael Giacchino (pronounced juh-kee-no) (born in Riverside, New Jersey) is an American soundtrack composer who has composed several multi-award winning scores for many popular movies, television series and video games. ... John Debney (born Glendale, California, 18 August 1956) is a prolific American film composer who received an Oscar nomination for his score for Mel Gibson`s The Passion of the Christ. ... Daniel Robert Elfman (born May 29, 1953 in Los Angeles, California) is an American musician who led the rock band Oingo Boingo as singer / songwriter from 1976 until its breakup in 1995, and has composed film scores extensively since 1985s Pee-wees Big Adventure. ... Philip Glass (born January 31, 1937) is a three-times Academy Award-nominated American composer. ... Sergei Sergeyevich Prokofiev (Серге́й Серге́евич Проко́фьев) (April 271, 1891 – March 5, 1953) was one of the Soviet Unions greatest composers. ...


Some well-known orchestral soundtracks include:

Love Theme From The Godfather Image File history File links Love_Theme_From_The_Godfather. ...

The famous theme, composed by Larry Kusic and Nino Rota.

Problems listening to the file? See media help. Nino Rota (December 3, 1911 – April 10, 1979) was an Italian composer best known for his work on film scores, notably The Godfather series and the films of Federico Fellini. ...

This article is about the 1972 film. ... This article is about the series. ... Titanic is the soundtrack to the movie by the same name composed by James Horner. ... This article is about the entire Star Trek franchise. ... This article is about the novel. ... Gone with the Wind is a 1939 film adapted from Margaret Mitchells 1936 novel of the same name. ... Jaws is a 1975 thriller film directed by Steven Spielberg, based on Peter Benchleys best-selling novel inspired by the Jersey Shore shark attacks of 1916. ... Psycho is a 1960 suspense/horror film directed by auteur Alfred Hitchcock from the screenplay by Joseph Stefano about a psychotic killer. ... ET (or et) is Latin for and; it can also refer to: Estonian language (ISO 639 alpha-2, et) E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, the 1982 film, or the related video game extraterrestrials in general Eastern Time, both in standard time and daylight time Entertainment Tonight engineering technology elapsed time... This article is about Disneys 1994 film. ... This article is about the first film in the Back to the Future trilogy. ... This article is about the fictional character. ... This article is about the film; for the definition of the UFO related phenomenon, see Close encounter. ... The term crimson tide has several meanings. ... For other uses, see Aviator (disambiguation) The Aviator is an Academy Award-winning 2004 biographical drama film, directed by Martin Scorsese, and based largely on the book Hughes by Richard Hack. ... This article is about the Harry Potter series of novels. ... This article is about the 1942 film. ... This article is about the film. ... Lawrence of Arabia is an award-winning 1962 film based on the life of T. E. Lawrence. ... 007 redirects here. ... Dr. Henry Walden Jones, Jr. ... For other uses of the word, see Vertigo. ... The Great Escape, written by James Clavell, W.R. Burnett, and Walter Newman (uncredited), and directed by John Sturges is a popular 1963 World War II film, based on a true story about Allied prisoners of war with a record for escaping from German prisoner-of-war camps. ... The Pirates of the Caribbean films are a trilogy of pirate adventure films directed by Gore Verbinski, written by Ted Elliott and Terry Rossio and produced by Jerry Bruckheimer. ... The references in this article would be clearer with a different and/or consistent style of citation, footnoting or external linking. ...

See also

The following is a list of people who predominantly (or most famously) compose soundtrack music for film (i. ...

External links

The Internet Movie Database (IMDb) is an online database of information about movies, actors, television shows, production crew personnel, and video games. ...

Independent specialist original soundtrack recording labels


  Results from FactBites:
 
The Functions of Film Music (2946 words)
Such songs are really known as the film's soundtrack, while the orchestral music composed or used in a film is a film score, whether it was originally composed for the film or used in another context previously.
All film scores provide their respective films with one of these functions; even the worst scores, since, though they do not perfectly support the film, they are still scored with the intention of providing at least one of those functions.
Since this film was scored only for the purpose of underscoring the action, there was nothing else for the composer to tell us about the film's situations and characters, thus the score resolved itself by providing the same output for every scene.
Film Score Monthly.COM: About FSM (345 words)
Film Score Monthly is one of the leading voices in film music appreciation.
The record label Film Score Monthly was founded in 1998 and has released well over 100 CDs of historically important original soundtracks from the 1940s through the 1980s.
These film scores -- typically unavailable anywhere else -- are licensed from the Hollywood studios and lovingly preserved and restored for commercial presentation.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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