George Clooney‘s World War II tale The Monuments Men has been pushed to an unspecified date in early 2014. We’ve learned that the pic was delayed because visual effects could not be completed in time for the Sony film’s scheduled December 18 release date. Composer Alexandre Desplat also has not yet recorded the score. The thriller about a platoon of art historians and museum directors tasked with rescuing priceless art from the Nazis did well in screenings late last week in Phoenix and the week before in Sherman Oaks, CA. The film now won’t be eligible for the Academy Awards, but it was never Clooney’s goal to push it for Oscar attention. Rather, he intended to make an ensemble film in the style of 1961′s The Guns Of Navarone. Clooney also is burning the candle at both ends. He’s busy shooting Disney’s Tomorrowland as well as trying to wrap up Monuments Men.
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David Mermelstein is an AwardsLine contributor. It’s not unusual to have big names in popular music perform end-title songs for major movies. Opera singers, though, don’t generally roll that way. But nobody ever said they can’t. Which is why Alexandre Desplat, who composed the music for Rise Of The Guardians, decided to approach soprano Renée Fleming about singing “Still Dream,” which uses the melody he wrote for the picture’s main theme and lyrics by the film’s screenwriter, David Lindsay-Abaire.
“It covers two octaves,” Desplat says of the song. “The music is very orchestral; the melody, very lyrical. So it really made sense to ask Renée Fleming, who is the greatest soprano alive. And she said yes right away. It was a suggestion that could have been rejected, but it was right — though I can’t remember the last time a soprano sang an end-title song.” Read More »
David Mermelstein is an AwardsLine contributor.
Alexandre Desplat is nothing if not prolific. This year the quadruple Oscar-nominated composer will have five films in theaters. And, as is typical for him, each score is completely different from the others—much like the movies themselves. “If I only did thrillers, I would kill myself,” he said by phone recently from Majorca. “Seriously, I would want to change jobs.”
What keeps him in the game is the opportunity to play with various styles in different genres and compose music that challenges and delights him. “They’re all my babies and all so different,” he says of his scores. “They have different faces and shapes and costumes. Some are big, some are small—and some are huge. Some are talkative, and some are quiet. But I try to give the best of my energy to all of them.”
The most time consuming of these recent projects was his soaring music to DreamWorks’ Rise Of The Guardians, which marked the first time Desplat wrote for animation on such a vast scale. “It was three months altogether, writing and recording,” the composer says. “When you work on animation, the music has a great task: to create a sound and melodies and mood and atmosphere and energy dedicated to these extraordinary characters. And you see they are very specific, very clearly designed. Each has a personality that is different. It’s fun and moving and very emotional.”
Related: OSCARS: Animating ‘Rise Of The Guardians’ Read More »