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IFMCA Award Nominations 2021

February 3, 2022 Leave a comment Go to comments

INTERNATIONAL FILM MUSIC CRITICS ASSOCIATION AWARDS NOMINATIONS ANNOUNCED

JAMES NEWTON HOWARD AND HANS ZIMMER RECEIVE FOUR NOMINATIONS EACH; THREE WOMEN NOMINATED FOR BREAKTHROUGH COMPOSER AWARD; SCORES FROM AUSTRALIA, CHINA, FINLAND, FRANCE, SPAIN, VYING FOR MAJOR AWARDS

FEBRUARY 3, 2022. The International Film Music Critics Association (IFMCA) announces its list of nominees for excellence in musical scoring in 2021, for the 18th annual IFMCA Awards. Composers James Newton Howard and Hans Zimmer lead a very open field with the most number of nominations, both receiving a total of four. Composers Panu Aaltio, Nicholas Britell, Jonny Greenwood, Maurizio Malagnini, and Bear McCreary all received three nominations.

American composer Howard’s nominations are for his work on two films: the globe-trotting action-adventure “Jungle Cruise” starring Dwayne Johnson and Emily Blunt, which is based on the popular Disney theme park ride; and the animated fantasy “Raya and the Last Dragon,” which follows the adventures of a young girl in an alternate universe version of South East Asia, as she tries to save her family by hunting for a mythical dragon. “Jungle Cruise” is nominated for Score of the Year and Best Action/Adventure/Thriller Score, “Raya and the Last Dragon” is nominated for Best Animation Score, and Howard is nominated for Composer of the Year.

IFMCA member Christian Clemmensen said that “Jungle Cruise” is a combination of “skittish comedy, sincere drama, breakneck adventure, romantic teasing, and flowing fantasy, all inhabiting one whirlwind of a score” and concluded that it “represents most of what his collectors love about Howard’s writing.” IFMCA member John Mansell described “Raya and the Last Dragon” as “a fully symphonic work … mysterious, with rich and lush musical moments that are filled with the romantic and the comedic, a varied and vibrant work that is bursting to capacity with haunting themes and edged with emotive and poignant tone poems.”

German composer Zimmer’s nominations are for his work on two of 2021’s most popular and acclaimed films: director Denis Villeneuve’s “Dune,” based on the groundbreaking science fiction novel by Frank Herbert, and the action-packed 25th James Bond film “No Time to Die,” which marks the end of actor Daniel Craig’s term playing the legendary British spy. “Dune” is nominated for Score of the Year and Best Fantasy/Sci-Fi/Horror Score, “No Time to Die” is nominated for Best Action/Adventure/Thriller Score, and Zimmer is nominated for Composer of the Year.

IFMCA member Jon Broxton wrote that there was “something timeless, ancient, epic, but also futuristic and progressive” about the music from “Dune,” and concluded that “when it works, and Zimmer really gets to the heart and soul of Frank Herbert’s story and Denis Villeneuve’s vision, it’s some of the most effective film music of 2021”. IFMCA member James Southall said that “No Time to Die” is “essentially the score that lots of Bond fans have wanted for a while, combining all the traditional musical elements you’d expect, and giving them a modern twist, along with the oft-requested deep interpolation of the song into the score,” and called it “entertaining from start to finish.”

The other nominees for Score of the Year are “Coppelia” by Italian composer Maurizio Malagnini, “The Green Knight” by American composer Daniel Hart, and “The Last Duel” by British composer Harry Gregson-Williams. “Coppelia” is a lavish fantasy ballet film, an updated version of the original stage work by Léo Delibes, in which a pair of young lovers from a small European town must save their home from an evil interloper intending to use the townspeople’s ‘essence’ to give life to a robotic creation. Malagnini’s lush and thematic ‘maximalist’ orchestral score carries the emotional weight of the entire film, and uses rich arrangements to tell the story.

“The Green Knight” is a fantasy based on the medieval story of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, in which King Arthur’s nephew must contend with notions of chivalry and honor while facing the prospect of being beheaded after an encounter with a monstrous warrior; Hart’s score combines English folk music, religious plainsong, medieval orchestrations, modern string textures, and aggressively dissonant electronica, in a wondrous kaleidoscope of influences that bring this ancient story roaring into modern relevance. Ridley Scott’s “The Last Duel” looks at the circumstances leading up to, and the aftermath of, one of the last legally-sanctioned trial-by-combat duels, while also offering an exploration of female agency in medieval Europe; like Hart, Gregson-Williams blends early church music with contemporary orchestral writing, and frames it all around three recurring themes that represent the three conflicting points of view at the heart of the story.

The other nominees for Composer of the Year are Finnish composer Panu Aaltio, American composer Nicholas Britell, and British composer Jonny Greenwood. Aaltio’s work in 2021 was confined to his native Finland but was of outstanding quality and consistency, and included the children’s adventure Pertsa & Kilu [Finders of the Lost Yacht], the medieval comedy Peruna [The Potato Venture], and the magnificent nature documentary Tunturin Tarina [Tale of the Sleeping Giants]. Both The Potato Venture and Tale of the Sleeping Giants are nominated in their respective genre categories.

Britell scored two of 2021’s most popular comedies – “Cruella,” which stars Emma Stone and tells the origin story of the villain from the Disney animated classic “101 Dalmatians,” and the prescient satire “Don’t Look Up,” which parodies societal apathy towards COVID-19 and climate change through a story about an impending meteor strike on Earth – as well as the third season of the biting TV drama “Succession”. Meanwhile, Greenwood scored two of 2021’s most acclaimed dramas – the dark revisionist western “The Power of the Dog,” and “Spencer,” which looks at a period in the life of the late Diana, Princess of Wales, as her marriage and her life collapses under pressure from the royal family and scrutiny from the media.

Each year the IFMCA goes out of its way to recognize emerging talent in the film music world, and this year is no exception. The nominees in the Breakthrough Composer of the Year category are a diverse group, and the IFMCA is especially excited to reveal that three of the five nominees are women. Irish composer Amie Doherty is recognized for her work scoring the animated family adventure “Spirit Untamed” with a lyrical western scope. American composer Stephanie Economou is nominated for her breakout scores for the sci-fi TV series “Jupiter’s Legacy,” the Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla DLC “The Siege of Paris,” and the academia-set comedy TV series “The Chair”. French composer Raphaelle Thibaut is acknowledged for her music for the beautiful nature documentary “Secrets of the Whales”.

The other two composers nominated for Breakthrough Composer are Spanish composer Oscar Martín Leanizbarrutia and British composer Arthur Sharpe. Martín wrote a sensationally beautiful score for “Claret,” a Spanish-language biopic of the 19th century Catholic archbishop and missionary Antonio María Claret; his main theme from the score is also nominated in the Film Music Composition of the Year category. Finally, Sharpe impressed enormously with two breakthrough works in 2021: “The Electrical Life of Louis Wain,” a biopic of the Victorian-era artist of the same name starring Benedict Cumberbatch, and “Landscapers,” a British true crime TV mini-series about a middle aged couple who killed their parents and buried them in their garden.

As it has in previous years, the IFMCA takes pride in honoring composers from across the film music world. In addition to the ones already mentioned, this year’s international nominees include American composer Chad Cannon for the expansive Chinese nature documentary “Qinghai: Our National Park,” French composer Alexandre Desplat for director Wes Anderson’s stylish comedy “The French Dispatch,” British composer Simon Franglen for his score for the lavish Chinese romantic action drama “The Curse of Turandot,” Australian composer Christopher Gordon who has two nominations for the survival drama “Buckley’s Chance,” Thai composer Bill Hemstapat for co-composing the video game “Ghost of Tsushima: Iki Island & Legends” with Chad Cannon, Japanese composer Wataru Hokoyama for co-composing the video game “Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart” with Mark Mothersbaugh, Israeli composer Frank Ilfman for the raucous action thriller “Gunpowder Milkshake,” French composer Christophe Julien for the culinary comedy “Délicieux,” and American composer Philip Klein for the colorful Chinese animated film “Wish Dragon”.

Several composers are receiving their first ever IFMCA Award nominations this year in addition to the aforementioned newcomers; these are Leo Birenberg (“Cobra Kai,” Television), Germaine Franco (“Encanto,” Animation), Natalie Holt (“Loki,” Television), Dominic Lewis (“The King’s Man,” Action/Adventure/Thriller), and Zach Robinson (“Cobra Kai,” Television).

The International Film Music Critics Association will announce the winners of the 18th IFMCA Awards LIVE on the IFMCA YouTube channel on February 17, 2022.

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The nominees are:

FILM SCORE OF THE YEAR

  • COPPELIA, music by Maurizio Malagnini
  • DUNE, music by Hans Zimmer
  • THE GREEN KNIGHT, music by Daniel Hart
  • JUNGLE CRUISE, music by James Newton Howard
  • THE LAST DUEL, music by Harry Gregson-Williams

FILM COMPOSER OF THE YEAR

  • PANU AALTIO
  • NICHOLAS BRITELL
  • JONNY GREENWOOD
  • JAMES NEWTON HOWARD
  • HANS ZIMMER

BREAKTHROUGH COMPOSER OF THE YEAR

  • AMIE DOHERTY
  • STEPHANIE ECONOMOU
  • OSCAR MARTÍN LEANIZBARRUTIA
  • ARTHUR SHARPE
  • RAPHAELLE THIBAUT

FILM MUSIC COMPOSITION OF THE YEAR

  • “Arachnoverture” from SPIDER-MAN: NO WAY HOME, music by Michael Giacchino
  • “Claret, Tema Principal” from CLARET, music by Oscar Martín Leanizbarrutia
  • “The Final Battle” from MY COUNTRY, MY PARENTS [WO HE WO DE FUBEI], music by Gordy Haab
  • “Grand Finale” from COPPELIA, music by Maurizio Malagnini
  • “Riddles” from BUCKLEY’S CHANCE, music by Christopher Gordon

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE FOR A DRAMA FILM

  • BUCKLEY’S CHANCE, music by Christopher Gordon
  • THE CURSE OF TURANDOT [TULANDUO: MOZHOU YUANQI], music by Simon Franglen
  • THE LAST DUEL, music by Harry Gregson-Williams
  • THE POWER OF THE DOG, music by Jonny Greenwood
  • SPENCER, music by Jonny Greenwood

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE FOR A COMEDY FILM

  • CRUELLA, music by Nicholas Britell
  • DÉLICIEUX, music by Christophe Julien
  • DON’T LOOK UP, music by Nicholas Britell
  • THE FRENCH DISPATCH, music by Alexandre Desplat
  • THE POTATO VENTURE [PERUNA], music by Panu Aaltio

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE FOR AN ACTION/ADVENTURE/THRILLER FILM

  • GUNPOWDER MILKSHAKE, music by Frank Ilfman
  • JUNGLE CRUISE, music by James Newton Howard
  • THE KING’S MAN, music by Matthew Margeson and Dominic Lewis
  • LAST NIGHT IN SOHO, music by Steven Price
  • NO TIME TO DIE, music by Hans Zimmer

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE FOR A FANTASY/SCIENCE FICTION/HORROR FILM

  • COPPELIA, music by Maurizio Malagnini
  • DUNE, music by Hans Zimmer
  • GHOSTBUSTERS: AFTERLIFE, music by Rob Simonsen
  • THE GREEN KNIGHT, music by Daniel Hart
  • SPIDER-MAN: NO WAY HOME, music by Michael Giacchino

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE FOR AN ANIMATED FEATURE

  • ENCANTO, music by Germaine Franco
  • LUCA, music by Dan Romer
  • RAYA AND THE LAST DRAGON, music by James Newton Howard
  • SPIRIT UNTAMED, music by Amie Doherty
  • WISH DRAGON, music by Philip Klein

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE FOR A DOCUMENTARY

  • THE ARCTIC: OUR LAST GREAT WILDERNESS, music by Alex Heffes
  • JULIA, music by Rachel Portman
  • A PERFECT PLANET, music by Ilan Eshkeri
  • QINGHAI: OUR NATIONAL PARK [QINGHAI: WOMEN DE GUOJIA GONGYUAN], music by Chad Cannon
  • TALE OF THE SLEEPING GIANTS [TUNTURIN TARINA], music by Panu Aaltio

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE FOR TELEVISION

  • COBRA KAI, music by Leo Birenberg and Zach Robinson
  • FOUNDATION, music by Bear McCreary
  • LOKI, music by Natalie Holt
  • LOST IN SPACE, music by Christopher Lennertz
  • MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE: REVELATION, music by Bear McCreary

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE FOR A VIDEO GAME OR INTERACTIVE MEDIA

  • ARK: GENESIS PART II, music by Gareth Coker
  • CALL OF DUTY: VANGUARD, music by Bear McCreary
  • GHOST OF TSUSHIMA: IKI ISLAND & LEGENDS, music by Chad Cannon and Bill Hemstapat, theme by Ilan Eshkeri
  • MARVEL’S GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY, music by Richard Jacques
  • RATCHET & CLANK: RIFT APART, music by Mark Mothersbaugh and Wataru Hokoyama

BEST NEW ARCHIVAL RELEASE – RE-RELEASE OR RE-RECORDING

  • THE DIARY OF ANNE FRANK, music by Alfred Newman; album produced by Nick Redman, Mike Matessino, and Neil S. Bulk; liner notes by Julie Kirgo; album art direction by Jim Titus (La-La Land)
  • THE EIGER SANCTION, music by John Williams; album produced by Mike Matessino; liner notes by Jon Burlingame; album art direction by Kay Marshall (Intrada)
  • LEGEND, music by Jerry Goldsmith; album produced by Cyril Durand-Roger, Laurent Lafarge, Reynold d’Silva, and David Stoner; liner notes by Jeff Bond; album art direction by David Marques (Music Box/Silva Screen)
  • LIONHEART, music by Jerry Goldsmith; album produced by Cary Mansfield; liner notes by Tim Grieving; album art direction by Bill Pitzonka (Varèse Sarabande)
  • THE TAMARIND SEED, music by John Barry; album produced by Geoff Leonard, Pete Walker, Ruud Rozemeijer, David Stoner, and Reynold d’Silva; liner notes by Geoff Leonard and Pete Walker; album art direction by Stuart Ford (Silva Screen)

BEST NEW ARCHIVAL RELEASE – COMPILATION

  • THE FILM SCORES OF BERNARD HERRMANN, music by Bernard Herrmann; album produced by Tony d’Amato, Gavin Barratt, Raymond Few, and Tim McDonald; liner notes by Tom Schneller; album art direction by Matt Read (Phase 4/Deutsche Grammophon)
  • GABRIEL YARED: MUSIC FOR FILM, music by Gabriel Yared; the Brussels Philharmonic Orchestra and Vlaams Radiokoor. conducted by Dirk Brossé; album produced by Thomas Van Parys and Marijke Vandeburie; liner notes by Thomas Van Parys; album art direction by Stuart Ford (Silva Screen/Film Fest Gent)
  • PEDRO ALMODÓVAR & ALBERTO IGLESIAS FILM MUSIC COLLECTION, music by Alberto Iglesias; album produced by José M. Benitez and Alberto Iglesias; liner notes by Pedro Almodóvar, Alberto Iglesias, and Manuel J. Lombardo; album art direction by Nacho B. Govantes and Luca Barcellona (Quartet/El Deseo)
  • THE PINK PANTHER FINAL CHAPTERS COLLECTION (TRAIL OF THE PINK PANTHER/CURSE OF THE PINK PANTHER/SON OF THE PINK PANTHER), music by Henry Mancini; album produced by Chris Malone; liner notes by John Takis; album art direction by Nacho B. Govantes. (Quartet)
  • SPOTLIGHT ON JOHN WILLIAMS, music by John Williams; the City Light Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Kevin Griffiths; album produced by Pirmin Zängerle and Martin Korn; liner notes by Basil Böhni; album art direction by Roger Krütli (Prospero Classical)

FILM MUSIC RECORD LABEL OF THE YEAR

  • INTRADA, Douglass Fake and Roger Feigelson
  • LA-LA LAND RECORDS, MV Gerhard and Matt Verboys
  • MOVIESCORE MEDIA, Mikael Carlsson
  • MUSIC BOX RECORDS, Cyril Durand-Roger and Laurent Lafarge
  • QUARTET RECORDS, José M. Benitez

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The International Film Music Critics Association (IFMCA) is an association of online, print and radio journalists who specialize in writing and broadcasting about original film, television and game music.

Since its inception the IFMCA has grown to comprise over 75 members from countries such as Australia, Belgium, Canada, China, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Iran, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America.

Previous IFMCA Score of the Year Awards have been awarded to Christopher Willis’s “The Personal History of David Copperfield” in 2020, John Williams’s “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” in 2019, John Powell’s “Solo” in 2018, Jonny Greenwood’s “Phantom Thread” in 2017, Jóhann Jóhannsson’s “Arrival” in 2016, John Williams’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” in 2015, Hans Zimmer’s “Interstellar” in 2014, Abel Korzeniowski’s “Romeo & Juliet” in 2013, Mychael Danna’s “Life of Pi” in 2012, John Williams’s “War Horse” in 2011, and John Powell’s “How to Train Your Dragon” in 2010.

For more information about the International Film Music Critics Association go to www.filmmusiccritics.org, visit our Facebook page, find us on YouTube, follow us on Twitter @ifmca, or contact us at press@filmmusiccritics.org.

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