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Movie Music UK Awards 2018

February 1, 2019 8 comments

The world of film music in 2018 yielded some truly outstanding scores, but my top scores of the year actually came to me rather more easily than they usually do. They each spoke to different aspects of my musical personality, touching on my love of screen musicals, my love of powerful and rousing action, my love of deep emotional content, and my love of memorable themes. The year’s best score, for me, heralded the triumphant return to Hollywood of a 1990s great who has spent more time on Broadway than in Tinseltown, and if there is any justice at all he will be the world’s newest EGOT after the Oscars are announced.

Meanwhile, the world outside of the United States proved once again that brilliant film music can be found all over the globe if you are prepared to actively seek it out instead of simply settling for whatever the major studios foist upon us; my winners and nominees this year include scores from the UK, Mexico, Spain, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Iceland, Norway, Japan, China, and even Egypt. So, without further ado, here are my choices… Read more…

Academy Award Nominations 2018

January 22, 2019 Leave a comment

oscarstatuetteThe Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) have announced the nominations for the 91st Academy Awards, honoring the best in film in 2018.

In the Best Original Score category, the nominees are:

  • TERENCE BLANCHARD for Blackkklansman
  • NICHOLAS BRITELL for If Beale Street Could Talk
  • ALEXANDRE DESPLAT for Isle of Dogs
  • LUDWIG GÖRANSSON for Black Panther
  • MARC SHAIMAN for Mary Poppins Returns

These are the first Oscar nominations for Blanchard and Göransson. This is the second nomination Britell (his first was Moonlight in 2016) and the fourth score nomination for Shaiman (his seventh overall, including nominations for Best Song) – although his last one came in 1999 for Patch Adams. Desplat has now been nominated ten times, and is the only former Oscar winner in the field, having won for The Grand Budapest Hotel in 2014, and for The Shape of Water last year in 2017.

In the Best Original Song category, the nominees are:

  • STEFANI GERMANOTTA (LADY GAGA), MARK RONSON, ANTHONY ROSSOMANDO, and ANDREW WYATT for “Shallow” from A Star is Born
  • KENDRICK LAMAR DUCKWORTH, MARK SPEARS (SOUNWAVE), ANTHONY TIFFITH, and SOLANA ROWE (SZA) for “All the Stars” from Black Panther
  • DAVID RAWLINGS and GILLIAN WELCH for “When a Cowboy Trades His Spurs for Wings” from The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
  • MARC SHAIMAN and SCOTT WITTMAN for “The Place Where Lost Things Go” from MARY POPPINS RETURNS
  • DIANE WARREN for “I’ll Fight” from RGB

The winners of the 91st Academy Awards will be announced on February 24, 2018.

BAFTA Nominations 2018

January 9, 2019 Leave a comment

baftaThe British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) has announced the nominations for the 72nd British Academy Film Awards, honoring the best in film in 2018.

In the Best Original Music category, which is named in memory of the film director Anthony Asquith, the nominees are:

  • TERENCE BLANCHARD for Blackkklansman
  • NICHOLAS BRITELL for If Beale Street Could Talk
  • BRADLEY COOPER, STEFANI GERMANOTTA (LADY GAGA), and LUKAS NELSON for A Star is Born
  • ALEXANDRE DESPLAT for Isle of Dogs
  • MARC SHAIMAN for Mary Poppins Returns

This is the ninth BAFTA nomination for Desplat, who won for “The King’s Speech” in 2010, “The Grand Budapest Hotel” in 2014, and for “The Shape of Water” in 2018; and the second nomination for Shaiman, who was previously nominated for “Sleepless in Seattle” in 1993. It is the first nomination for both Blanchard and Britell. Cooper, Nelson, and Lady Gaga are nominated for the numerous original songs they wrote for the latest screen version of A Star is Born.

The winners of the 72nd BAFTA Awards will be announced on February 20, 2019.

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Golden Globe Winners 2018

January 6, 2019 Leave a comment

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) have announced the winners of the 76th Golden Globe Awards, honoring the best in film and American television of 2018.

In the Best Original Score category composer Justin Hurwitz won the award for his score for director Damien Chazelle’s film First Man, which tells the life story of the first man on the moon Neil Armstrong. This is Hurwitz’s second Golden Globe, him having won previously for La La Land in 2016. In his acceptance speech, Hurwitz said:

“OK, alright. I have to thank Nick Baxter who mixed this score, and John Taylor who mixed this movie, because a theremin score could have ended up being very annoying, and they found the right place for everything to sit and showed that great mixers can make a composer look good. So, thanks to them. I want to thank Tom Cross who cut the film, and the whole editorial department – Harry Yoon, John To, Derek Drouin, Jennifer Stelemma, Jeff Harlacker, Jason Miller – I’m in awe of how you guys put together something so complex. Thank you of course to Damian [Chazelle], who is brilliant and loyal and touches every detail of our work. Thank you HFPA, thank you everybody at Universal, and the Los Angeles musicians.”

The other nominees were Marco Beltrami for A Quiet Place, Alexandre Desplat for Isle of Dogs, Ludwig Göransson for Black Panther, and Marc Shaiman for Mary Poppins Returns.

In the Best Original Song category, the winners were Stefani Germanotta (Lady Gaga), Mark Ronson, Anthony Rossomando, and Andrew Wyatt, for their song “Shallow” from the latest version of A Star Is Born.

The other nominees were Jón Þór Birgisson (Jónsi), Troye Sivan, and Brett McLaughlin for “Revelation” from Boy Erased; Kendrick Lamar Duckworth, Anthony Tiffith, Mark Spears (Sounwave), Solána Rowe (SZA), and Al Shuckburgh (Al Shux) for “All the Stars” from Black Panther; Annie Lennox for “Requiem for A Private War” from A Private War; and Dolly Parton and Linda Perry for “Girl in the Movies” from Dumplin’.

Golden Globe Nominations 2018

December 7, 2018 1 comment

goldenglobeThe Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) has announced the nominations for the 76th Golden Globe Awards, honoring the best in film and American television of 2018.

In the Best Original Score category, the nominees are:

  • MARCO BELTRAMI for A Quiet Place
  • ALEXANDRE DESPLAT for Isle of Dogs
  • LUDWIG GÖRANSSON for Black Panther
  • JUSTIN HURWITZ for First Man
  • MARC SHAIMAN for Mary Poppins Returns

This is the first Golden Globe nomination for Beltrami, and the first major film music nomination of any kind for Göransson, although Göransson has been a multiple Grammy award nominee and winner for his work as a producer for Donald Glover and Childish Gambino.

This is the 2nd nomination for Hurwitz, who previously won the Globe for La La Land in 2016, the 2nd nomination for Shaiman, and the 10th nomination for Desplat, who previously won the Globe for The Painted Veil in 2006 and The Shape of Water in 2017.

In the Best Original Song category, the nominees are:

  • JÓN ÞÓR BIRGISSON (JÓNSI), TROYE SIVAN, and BRETT McLAUGHLIN for “Revelation” from Boy Erased
  • KENDRICK LAMAR DUCKWORTH, ANTHONY TIFFITH, MARK SPEARS (SOUNWAVE), SOLÁNA ROWE (SZA), and AL SHUCKBURGH (AL SHUX) for “All the Stars” from Black Panther
  • STEFANI GERMANOTTA (LADY GAGA), MARK RONSON, ANTHONY ROSSOMANDO, and ANDREW WYATT for “Shallow” from A Star Is Born
  • ANNIE LENNOX for “Requiem for A Private War” from A Private War
  • DOLLY PARTON and LINDA PERRY for “Girl in the Movies” from Dumplin’

The winners of the 76th Golden Globe Awards will be announced on January 6, 2019.

Academy Award Winners 2017

March 4, 2018 Leave a comment

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) have announced the winners of the 90th Academy Awards, honoring the best in film in 2017.

In the Best Original Score category composer Alexandre Desplat won the award for his score for director Guillermo del Toro’s romantic fantasy film The Shape of Water. In accepting his award, Desplat said:

Merci, c’est fantastique. I‘m very grateful to the Academy. My mother is also turning 90 this year so I think she’ll be very happy tonight! Yes, she’s Greek, by the way! Now, Guillermo, thank you, you know, thank you for the letting the music be the voice of your characters and convey the beautiful melancholy of love. That’s for you. I wish to thank Miles Dale, Fox Searchlight, and the music department at Fox. All the musicians who played on the score and those downstairs here, and I wish to thank queen Renee Fleming, Laura Engel, Ray Costa, my friend Katz, and Solrey you elevate my music, everything I write by your musical genius, thank you, but this is not for you, it’s for our daughters Ninou and Antonia. Thank you!

The other nominees were Carter Burwell for Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri, Jonny Greenwood for Phantom Thread, John Williams for Star Wars: The Last Jedi, and Hans Zimmer for Dunkirk.

In the Best Original Song category, the winners were Kristin Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez their song “Remember Me” from Coco.

The other nominees were Mary J. Blige, Raphael Saadiq, and Taura Stinson for “Mighty River” from Mudbound; Benj Pasek and Justin Paul for “This Is Me” from The Greatest Showman; Sufjan Stevens for “Mystery of Love” from Call Me By Your Name; and Diane Warren and Lonnie Lynn Jr. (Common) for “Stand Up For Something” from Marshall.

IFMCA Award Winners 2017

February 22, 2018 Leave a comment

INTERNATIONAL FILM MUSIC CRITICS ASSOCIATION ANNOUNCES WINNERS OF 2017 IFMCA AWARDS; “PHANTOM THREAD” TAKES SCORE OF THE YEAR, MULTIPLE WINS FOR MICHAEL GIACCHINO, BENJAMIN WALLFISCH

The International Film Music Critics Association (IFMCA) announces its list of winners for excellence in musical scoring in 2017, in the 2017 IFMCA Awards.

The award for Score of the Year goes to British composer Jonny Greenwood for his score for critically acclaimed period drama “Phantom Thread,” directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, and starring Daniel Day-Lewis. In describing the score, IFMCA member Jon Broxton wrote that it was a “quite masterful score from Greenwood, one which gets deeply under the skin of the damaged, potentially dangerous, but nevertheless mutually fulfilling relationship at the center of the story. The abstract, impressionistic, modernistic textures perfectly capture the torment that both characters at times feel, as well as their willful and often unpleasant personalities. Then, when he opens up his orchestra and performs the Phantom Thread theme with glorious melodrama, or when he writes elegant romantic music for what should be the dreadful finale, the whole thing simply soars”. The score was also named Best Original Score for Drama Film; these are the first IFMCA Award wins of Greenwood’s career, him having previously been nominated for Breakthrough Film Composer of the Year in 2007 and Best Original Score for an Action/Adventure/Thriller Film for “Inherent Vice” in 2014. Read more…

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BAFTA Winners 2017

February 18, 2018 Leave a comment

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) have announced the winners of the 71st British Academy Film Awards, honoring the best in film in 2017.

In the Best Original Score category composer Alexandre Desplat won the award for his score for director Guillermo del Toro’s romantic fantasy film The Shape of Water. In accepting his award, Desplat said:

“Yes, what a venue for music! Thank you, it’s… it’s marvelous. Guillermo, your film is unique, and the poetry you’ve given us is amazing, and for music there’s always a good bonding between music and poetry, so thank you, thank you very much. Thanks to Fox Searchlight. This music was recorded here in London by the London Symphony Orchestra at Abbey Road [applause] Marvelous musicians! Many of them, one of them is here tonight, Solrey, the best musician I have ever met and… [applause] and, Antonia, my daughter. Hi, Antonia! And… I thank you. It’s marvelous. Thank you.”

The other nominees were Jonny Greenwood for Phantom Thread, Dario Marianelli for Darkest Hour, Benjamin Wallfisch and Hans Zimmer for Blade Runner 2049, and Hans Zimmer again for Dunkirk.

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IFMCA Award Nominations 2017

February 8, 2018 1 comment

ifmcasquareINTERNATIONAL FILM MUSIC CRITICS ASSOCIATION AWARD NOMINATIONS ANNOUNCED; MULTIPLE NOMINATIONS FOR ALEXANDRE DESPLAT, MICHAEL GIACCHINO, DANIEL PEMBERTON, JOHN WILLIAMS

FEBRUARY 8, 2018. The International Film Music Critics Association (IFMCA) announces its list of nominees for excellence in musical scoring in 2017, for the 14th annual IFMCA Awards. In a wide open field, the most nominated composers are Alexandre Desplat and Daniel Pemberton, who both received four nominations, Michael Giacchino, who received five nominations, and John Williams, who received six nominations for new work, plus an additional three for archival re-releases of some of his classic scores.

56-year old Frenchman Alexandre Desplat is nominated for his work on two scores – director Guillermo Del Toro’s critically acclaimed monster movie romance “The Shape of Water,” and director Luc Besson’s epic space fantasy “Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets” – and is one of the five nominees for Composer of the Year. IFMCA member James Southall said that “The Shape of Water” was “yet another from the top drawer of Desplat,” and went on to describe him as “one of the most consistently impressive film composers of the last couple of decades,” who has “managed to be so successful without having to water down his highly-distinctive musical voice at all”. Desplat previously received IFMCA Score of the Year honors in 2008 for “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”. His other major scores in 2017 include director George Clooney’s satirical racial drama ‘”Suburbicon,” and the French-language comedy-drama “D”Après Une Histoire Vraie,” directed by Roman Polanski. Read more…

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Movie Music UK Awards 2017

February 1, 2018 4 comments

mmukawardsAfter a little bit of a slow start, 2017 ended up being a really excellent year for film music. Many of the industry’s most reliable and storied composers had superb years, each writing multiple outstanding scores, while a bevy of exceptionally talented newcomers made their marks on the genre for the first time, proving that – hopefully – the future is in good hands if they continue to be given quality projects to score.

Despite the lack of a true ***** masterpiece, I ended up with an astonishing 66 scores which, were I still handing out star ratings, would have rated **** or better. And it’s not just Hollywood staples – composers working in China and Japan, Britain and France, Russia and Poland and Finland, Spain and Italy, all wrote outstanding music this year, proving once again that there is magnificent music out there – if only you’re prepared to look for it. So, without further ado, here are my choices… Read more…

Academy Award Nominations 2017

January 23, 2018 1 comment

oscarstatuetteThe Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) have announced the nominations for the 90th Academy Awards, honoring the best in film in 2017.

In the Best Original Score category, the nominees are:

  • CARTER BURWELL for Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri
  • ALEXANDRE DESPLAT for The Shape of Water
  • JONNY GREENWOOD for Phantom Thread
  • JOHN WILLIAMS for Star Wars: The Last Jedi
  • HANS ZIMMER for Dunkirk

This the first nomination for Greenwood and the second nomination for Burwell. Desplat has now been nominated nine times, having previously won for The Grand Budapest Hotel in 2014, while Zimmer has now been nominated eleven times, having previously won the The Lion King in 1994.

Incredibly, this is the 51st Oscar nomination for John Williams, which breaks his own record for the most nominated living person, and maintains his position as the second most nominated person of all time after Walt Disney (who had 59). He previously won Academy Awards for Fiddler on the Roof in 1971, Jaws in 1975, Star Wars in 1977, E. T. The Extra-Terrestrial in 1982, and Schindler’s List in 1993.

In the Best Original Song category, the nominees are:

  • KRISTIN ANDERSON-LOPEZ and ROBERT LOPEZ for “Remember Me” from Coco
  • MARY J. BLIGE, RAPHAEL SAADIQ, and TAURA STINSON for “Mighty River” from Mudbound
  • BENJ PASEK and JUSTIN PAUL for “This Is Me” from The Greatest Showman
  • SUFJAN STEVENS for “Mystery of Love” from Call Me By Your Name
  • DIANE WARREN and LONNIE LYNN JR. (COMMON) for “Stand Up For Something” from Marshall

The winners of the 90th Academy Awards will be announced on March 4, 2018.

BAFTA Nominations 2017

January 9, 2018 2 comments

baftaThe British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) has announced the nominations for the 71st British Academy Film Awards, honoring the best in film in 2017.

In the Best Original Music category, which is named in memory of the film director Anthony Asquith, the nominees are:

  • ALEXANDRE DESPLAT for The Shape of Water
  • JONNY GREENWOOD for Phantom Thread
  • DARIO MARIANELLI for Darkest Hour
  • BENJAMIN WALLFISCH and HANS ZIMMER for Blade Runner 2049
  • HANS ZIMMER for Dunkirk

This is the eighth BAFTA nomination for Desplat, who won for “The King’s Speech” in 2010 and “The Grand Budapest Hotel” in 2014; the second nomination for Greenwood; the third nomination for Marianelli; the first nomination for Wallfisch; and the ninth BAFTA film award nomination for Zimmer. Zimmer also has music nominations from the BAFTA TV Awards and the BAFTA Games Awards.

The winners of the 71st BAFTA Awards will be announced on February 18, 2018.

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Golden Globe Winners 2017

January 7, 2018 Leave a comment

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) have announced the winners of the 75th Golden Globe Awards, honoring the best in film and American television of 2017.

In the Best Original Score category composer Alexandre Desplat won the award for his score for director Guillermo del Toro’s romantic fantasy The Shape of Water. This is Desplat’s second Golden Globe, him having won previously for The Painted Veil in 2006. In his acceptance speech, Desplat said:

Thank you, merci, merci beaucoup. Different color from the previous one! Thank you Hollywood Foreign Press. Thanks to Fox Searchlight, to Miles Dale the producer, and Guillermo… you moved me. Your movie has moved me so much, inspired me so much, because it’s made of your humanity, your passion. I thank you also for all the dinners we have in Paris, and the ones to come. I want to thank all the musicians who recorded the score, they are marvelous. All the crew and cast: Richard [Jenkins], Sally [Hawkins], Doug [Jones]. The music department at Fox Searchlight, Queen Renee Fleming, Laura Engel, Ray Costa, my friend Katz, and Solrey – this is for you. Thank you very much!

The other nominees were Carter Burwell for Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri, Jonny Greenwood for Phantom Thread, John Williams for The Post, and Hans Zimmer for Dunkirk.

In the Best Original Song category, the winners were Benj Pasek, and Justin Paul for their song “This Is Me” from the screen musical The Greatest Showman.

The other nominees were Kristin Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez for “Remember Me” from Coco; Mariah Carey and Marc Shaiman for “The Star” from The Star; Nick Jonas, Justin Tranter, and Nick Monson for “Home” from Ferdinand; and Raphael Saadiq, Mary J. Blige, and Taura Stinson for “Mighty River” from Mudbound.

Golden Globe Nominations 2017

December 11, 2017 Leave a comment

goldenglobe

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) has announced the nominations for the 75th Golden Globe Awards, honoring the best in film and American television of 2017.

In the Best Original Score category, the nominees are:

  • CARTER BURWELL for Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri
  • ALEXANDRE DESPLAT for The Shape of Water
  • JONNY GREENWOOD for Phantom Thread
  • JOHN WILLIAMS for The Post
  • HANS ZIMMER for Dunkirk

This is the first Golden Globe nomination for Greenwood, and just his second major film music award nomination – he was previously nominated for a BAFTA for There Will Be Blood in 2007 – although he has been a multiple Grammy award nominee and winner for his work as a member of the alternative rock group Radiohead.

This is the 3rd nomination for Burwell, and the 9th nomination for Desplat, who previously won the Globe for The Painted Veil in 2006. It’s also the 25th nomination for Williams – who previously won Globes in 1975 for Jaws, 1977 for Star Wars, 1982 for E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial, and 2005 for Memoirs of a Geisha – and the 14th nomination for Zimmer, who previously won Globes for The Lion King in 1994 and Gladiator in 2000.

In the Best Original Song category, the nominees are:

  • KRISTIN ANDERSON-LOPEZ and ROBERT LOPEZ for “Remember Me” from Coco
  • MARIAH CAREY and MARC SHAIMAN for “The Star” from The Star
  • NICK JONAS, JUSTIN TRANTER, and NICK MONSON for “Home” from Ferdinand
  • BENJ PASEK, and JUSTIN PAUL for “This Is Me” from The Greatest Showman
  • RAPHAEL SAADIQ, MARY J. BLIGE, and TAURA STINSON for “Mighty River” from Mudbound

The winners of the 75th Golden Globe Awards will be announced on January 7, 2018.

Academy Award Winners 2016

February 26, 2017 Leave a comment

hurwitz-oscarThe Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) have announced the winners of the 89th Academy Awards, honoring the best in film in 2016.

In the Best Original Score category composer Justin Hurwitz won the award for his score for director Damian Chazelle’s film La La Land, a modern day musical which celebrates the style of classic Hollywood updated to a contemporary setting. Hurwitz accepted the award by saying:

“Ok, wow! Thank you so much to the Academy. Thank you to my very, very good friend, Damian [Chazelle], I’m so glad I met you! Thank you to Marc Platt, Jordan Horowitz, Fred Berger. Thank you to everybody at Lionsgate. Thank you to all the LA musicians who played on this score. I just put notes on a page and they’re the ones who made it beautiful and sound the way it does. If I start going through names I could make, at most, twenty to thirty people happy but, I’ll make about a hundred – a couple of hundred million people really bored, so I’ll just leave it at everybody who’s work is on-screen in any way in this movie, I was looking at your work when I was scoring the picture, I was looking at what you did when I was scoring the picture, and that’s what inspired me, so thank you to everybody who worked on this movie. Thank you.”

The other nominees were Nicholas Britell for Moonlight, Mica Levi for Jackie, Dustin O’Halloran and Volker “Hauschka” Bertelmann for Lion, and Thomas Newman for Passengers.

In the Best Original Song category, the winners were Justin Hurwitz, Justin Paul, and Benj Pasek, for their song “City of Stars” from La La Land.

The other nominees were Justin Hurwitz, Benj Pasek, and Justin Paul for “Audition (The Fools Who Dream)” from La La Land, Lin-Manuel Miranda for “How Far I’ll Go” from Moana, Joshua Ralph and Gordon Sumner (Sting) for “The Empty Chair” from Jim: The James Foley Story, and Justin Timberlake, Max Martin, and Karl Johan Schuster (Shellback) for “Can’t Stop the Feeling!” from Trolls.