Alex North’s 2001 and Beyond

In 1983 I was working as an art director for the studio which did the special effects for THE RIGHT STUFF. Though I was not personally involved in the effects, my knowledge of film music was well known around the studio and director Phil Kaufman, who was frequently coming in for meetings, asked me who…

Read more

ET: The Extra-Terrestrial

Craig Anderson’s letter In CinemaScore #15 (p.30)* raises once again that tired old question: just how original is an Original Soundtrack? I was initially dubious at Craig’s suggestion that John Williams had “lifted almost intact” his score for E.T. from Howard Hanson’s Romantic Symphony (it couldn’t be the other way around, as Craig allowed: the…

Read more

Forever Young

There are many stories involving a central character who awakes after a long sleep. Let’s see… we have Rip Van Winkle and Sleeping Beauty. Moving into the film medium, there are Gene Roddenberry’s pilots GENESIS II and PLANET EARTH, featuring the science of cryogenics and similarly, the Chuck Heston PLANET OF THE APES. STAR TREK…

Read more

Invaders from Mars

Christopher Young and the Invaders from Cannon Composer Christopher Young is, in the opinion of many, one of the most ex­citing young composers on the Hollywood scene. At the age of 28, Young has scored no less than 13 fea­ture films, among them THE POWER, DEF-CON 4, HIGH­POINT (re­plac­ing a score by John Ad­di­son), WHEELS…

Read more

Medicine Man

Background MEDICINE MAN is based on what was to be one of many ‘million-dollar screenplays’ of the time; it was directed by the acclaimed action director John McTiernan, who had previously helmed such solid thrillers as Predator and Die Hard. Sean Connery was executive producer as well as star, portraying Dr. Robert Campbell. Lorraine Bracco…

Read more

Melody Time

The animated films of Walt Disney can be divided into two major periods of development and culmination: the initial phase extending from his first efforts in the medium in the mid/late 1920s through the release of BAMBI in 1942, and the second lasting from 1942 to 1959 and the release of SLEEPING BEAUTY, Disney’s last…

Read more

Notes on Dragonslayer

The following article was originally written to accompany the Label X [Southern Cross] Records release of Alex North’s DRAGONSLAYER soundtrack, now out of print. After the planned booklet did not materialize, this material was subsequently made available to CinemaScore by Mr. Rosar. While the article concerns specifically the musical cues appearing on the Label X…

Read more