James Horner’s “epic” and “hugely cinematic” score for ‘Avatar’

Posted by · 10:07 am · October 7th, 2009

James HornerOne of the contenders we’ve certainly had an eye on in this year’s Oscar race is James Horner, composer of the score for James Cameron’s “Avatar.” The last time the duo worked together was the last time Cameron made a movie, and 1997’s “Titanic” brought in a massive Oscar haul that included a statue for Horner’s contribution.

Over at MovieScore Magazine, Mikael Carlsson is calling the score, which is unheard as of this point, “the film music event of the year,” and he gets a quote from Fox music executive VP Mike Knobloch:

It’s a brilliantly unique blend of traditional and contemporary, electronic elements and spans the entire spectrum of attitude and energy – from bombastic action to the delicate, romantic discovery of a new world.

That’s fine and good and generally empty as a quote of substance.  You could say that about the score to “The Rock.”

There’s more though.  Everything comes from this single source so it’s essentially publicity, not really reportage, but Knobloch offers this nugget, which is interesting from a creative stand-point:

[There] is a great deal of acoustic and electronic rhythmic elements driving the score and vocalists singing and chanting in the fictional Na’vi dialect. Horner is doing a brilliant job of creating music that transports us to another world, but supports the film using the traditional orchestral conventions to make a sound that’s hugely cinematic.

I’m currently predicting Horner for an Oscar nod based largely on pedigree alone, but I can only hope the score, and the film, lives up to the hype.

→ 15 Comments Tags: , , | Filed in: Daily

15 responses so far

  • 1 10-07-2009 at 10:32 am

    Loyal said...

    The Rock is one of the best action films of the last 25 years. I think Hans Zimmer’s score was perfectly suited for the film.

  • 2 10-07-2009 at 10:36 am

    red_wine said...

    I just hope Giacchino is not duped again.

  • 3 10-07-2009 at 10:38 am

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    With two shots on goal, no less.

  • 4 10-07-2009 at 10:59 am

    DHE said...

    If Horner uses the Ambrosian Choir again, I will hurl.

  • 5 10-07-2009 at 11:00 am

    DHE said...

    And PS: The score Oscars are always a joke – given out more as a prize to a film than to a composer. The Los Angeles Film Critics are the only ones who give out a music award worth a damn every year.

  • 6 10-07-2009 at 11:57 am

    AmericanRequiem said...

    i look forward to it

  • 7 10-07-2009 at 1:45 pm

    Jonathan Spuij said...

    I can’t wait to hear it. But many people keep referring to the Aliens connection but I don’t believe it’s gonna be like that at all. Too masculine.

  • 8 10-07-2009 at 3:05 pm

    DHE said...

    And lastly, the Los Angeles Film Critics did not screw Giacchino over:


  • 9 10-07-2009 at 4:17 pm

    Brian said...

    I don’t really remember any score from the Avatar scene-preview. Was there original score or was it temp?

  • 10 10-07-2009 at 4:57 pm

    /3rtfu11 said...

    I don’t like him after — finding out he didn’t want to work on Star Trek 6 because he was beyond Star Trek — fuck you — one of your best scores was for Star Trek 3!

  • 11 10-07-2009 at 7:19 pm

    Chris138 said...

    I hope this movie delivers. I’ll be highly disappointed if not.

  • 12 10-07-2009 at 8:40 pm

    Glenn said...

    I don’t remember the music from the Avatar preview clips, but the music they were playing before it started was kinda epic.

  • 13 10-08-2009 at 2:41 am

    Jonathan Spuij said...

    The music from the ultimate transformation scene in the lab where his Avatar is being applied to Sully had Horner music. I believe this because it was sroughly the same theme being played on the official site.
    The start of the preview had Hans Zimmer’s Journey to the Line. The rest had regular action scores I believe.

  • 14 10-08-2009 at 1:07 pm

    Cloy said...

    I feel like everything about this movie that’s being hyped as “epic” is bound to fail.