Hans Zimmer: In film, you’re working with people who encourage you to fail

Hans Zimmer: In film, you’re working with people who encourage you to fail


norman lebrecht

December 24, 2013

The sought-after film composer and five of his pals sit around a table and chew out the business in a fascinating colloquy for THR.

Thomas Newman says: ‘You have to let people know you’re flexible. If you come in like the guy who knows what he’s doing, and this is what it is, that’s tough.’

Alan Silvestri: ‘I walked into this project being recommended by Bob Zemeckis who, after Romancing the Stone, thought I could do anything. And they played me the temp dub, which was very carefully put together, and it’s temped with the Shostakovich Fifth Symphony.’

(oh, so that’s how its done.)

They grouch, they grumble, they deliver – pretty much like any concert composer. The difference is only the digits on the cheque.

Read the round table and watch the video here.

composers roundtable


  • Phil says:

    Their music reaches about 100 times more people, that’s another difference.

  • Dave K says:

    “Oh, so that’s how it’s done”.

    Like using great chunks of Prokofiev and forgetting they’re the temp dub?

  • Roberto Gonzalez says:

    My last orchestra conducting teacher was one of the Hollywood greats: David Raksin.

    I absolutely DESPISE Hans Zimmer and the musical leprosy he flings at the ears of filmgoers. The man has never met an exploding drum he will not use to beat an audience to death.

    Every one of his scores are terrible. I saw “12 Years A Slave” and his score was completely opposite the movie and useless, if not, annoying. Otherwise, that film was wonderful.

    I just saw “Man of Steel” with was a complete load of CRAP, but Zimmer’s score was tuneless, compared to the classics John Williams,

    The worst music at the Oscars Ceremony was the year that Zimmer was put in charge of music. It is a good thing they got rid of his synthesizer crap and brought back the symphony orchestra.

    I once thought James Horner was the worst hack in Hollywood (Hollywood is run by dipshits), but Horner sounds like some sort of genius compared to this musical [redacted]