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Hans Zimmer is one of the biggest film composers working in the industry today.  He won an Academy Award for his work on The Lion King, and has been nominated for six other films including Gladiator, The Thin Red Line, and As Good As It Gets. With The Last Samurai he celebrates his 100th film score, and SoundtrackNet had an opportunity to talk with Hans a few weeks ago during a rare break in his busy schedule working on Something's Gotta Give.<br><br>You've scored many projects during your career, and The Last Samurai is being touted as your 100th film score…<br><br>Well, I'm terrible with math, so I'm not doing the counting. It could be more, it could be less – but apparently it's the 100th.<br><br>So how did you get involved with the project?<br><br>If you're lucky enough to get nominated for an Oscar, you get invited to the Oscar nominee's luncheon where they hand out these little nomination certificates. There are usually 150 people standing there, and people are invited up in alphabetical order, starting with the As. By the time they get to the Cs, everybody's already back at their table chatting and eating, and while the first people called get thunderous applause, you can imagine what it's like when your name starts with Z!<br><br>So Ed Zwick and I were standing there, waiting at one of these luncheons about four years ago, and we started talking to each other. I asked him what he was working on and he told me about this movie called The Last Samurai, which I thought sounded interesting and I asked him to send me a script. After the script arrived, I didn't hear from him for a long time and I thought he'd forgotten about me, not thinking about how difficult it is to set up a samurai movie these days. The other thing I liked about the project was that Tom Cruise was involved, so it was like returning home, since I've scored a bunch of his movies – I knew we were going to have a good time.<br><br>Did it end up that way?<br><br>Ed and his editor Steve Rosenblum are such gentlemen, so together and professional, and they basically did one cut of the film, screened it, and everyone loved their work. So after this, they had plenty of time to come and hang with me, and while I usually love the re-cutting process because it's a diversionary tactic to keep the director and editor out of my life, these guys were great to have around. <br><br>Of course, my sense of paranoia made me think that something was going wrong all the time, waiting for the other shoe to drop, as it were, but it never happened. Ed phoned this morning and I thought, "Oh my god – rewrite!" It's just how my brain works. But I think he and I feel a bit odd now: we've been seeing each other every day for months, and suddenly we're done. I completely understand why people have a problem finishing a movie, because there's something really nice about the process – completion is far more boring.<br><br>For Samurai, you used Japanese percussions and ethnic woodwinds, without getting too 'Japanese'.<br><br>My problem is that I feel Japanese music is really inaccessible to Western ears, and I was really struggling with this film initially, trying to figure out what I was doing. This idea popped into my head for using Western-style themes, but applying a Japanese aesthetic to them, which sounds great of course, until I had to ask myself what I meant! Actually, I think it's just my way of not overloading certain things with too many colors, or being geometrically precise about my cues and not making them too flowery.<br><br>The Tom Cruise character is one of those nasty drunks at the beginning, who obviously has some serious problems he's trying to deal with, or not deal with. He's obnoxious and restless, suffering sleepless nights and is very un-Tom. For me, this character's journey was about his need to earn tranquility and peace, so within the score there's this very romantic, overblown and passionate theme. It's like a juvenile way of dealing with life and death – the pain and liebestod.<br><br>However, to contrast with these very relentless themes, there are a number of stark, formal and sober pieces, because I wanted to take Tom's character on a journey. He comes from America and ends up in this foreign place where he doesn't speak the language or understand the culture. But at the end of the movie, I want the audience to think that there isn't a more beautiful place for him to be, that he is at home in Japan and finally at peace.<br><br>There are many useless acts of bravery we do out of misguided romanticism, and this movie is full of courageous and dignified acts of bravery. So I wanted to play off these acts, since both the American and Japanese cultures have a concept of heroism, and I just wanted to see if I could play with the nature of the two different concepts.<br><br>So you didn't want to do the stereotypical Japanese thing...<br><br>Absolutely not! Take Akira Kurosawa's Ran, for example, which has this brilliant score where Takemitsu writes Western music, but with an Eastern accent. Somebody asked me a few days ago why As Good As It Gets was European – why did I write a European score for a quintessentially American story? For me, it's because Jack Nicholson was crazy in the movie, and I felt one of the great things about America is how they always think we Europeans are crazy. So by writing a European-styled score, it's my way of saying that Jack is crazy, but it's alright!<br><br>How do you feel about people who criticize your work for not fitting into the time period, like Gladiator?<br><br>The reason I take these jobs is because I'm interested in foreign cultures, and every time I get to work on a movie I'm thrown into the adventure of whatever that culture is, the time, and wherever the story's taking place. So one of the things I'm very careful about is not to be historically correct to the culture, but, on the other hand, not to insult the underlying aesthetics of that culture either. I remember watching Chariots of Fire and thinking how brilliantly the music worked, never missing that it wasn't period instruments! I grew up listening to Bach played by a symphony orchestra – it's the wrong sized orchestra with the wrong instruments, but I don't think that's the point.<br><br>With Gladiator, Pietro Scalia brought in a CD saying "this is Ancient Roman music," and I said, "Says who? You went to the Ancient Roman music store and bought an Ancient Roman music CD? Bullshit!" We're not anthropologists. Look at he costumes Ridley Scott had: they were more Napoleonic than Roman, which was perhaps fitting since Napoleon had stolen all of his good ideas from the Romans regarding how to make his generals look cool – and so did Hitler! So I got criticized for making the "Entry into Rome" cue too Leni Riefenstahl – but that was the joke! I am allowed to have a sense of humor in my music!<br><br>Earlier this summer your credit on Pirates of the Caribbean was "Score Overproduced by". What was the deal with that?<br><br>Well, I thought honesty was a virtue! But seriously, Jerry Bruckheimer quite rightly asked me not to give him "that old-fashioned Pirate music," and Gore Verbinski, who I adore and did The Ring with, said, "Well, it is a pirate movie, so we have to disguise it." In the end, I spent a day and a half writing tunes, Klaus Badelt wrote a lot of stuff, and we rolled up our sleeves, got drunk, behaved in a debauched way, and produced a score!<br><br>There was a lot of criticism regarding that score, but in the end it had to serve the film - which it did. You seem to get a lot of criticism on any project you do.<br><br>I had the misfortune of going onto the Film Score Monthly web site recently to look something up and vanity made me type in my own name. I suddenly realized that you can't ever get it right. Who do people want me to be? The guy that writes Matchstick Men? Or the guy that writes The Rock? Or the guy that writes Driving Miss Daisy? My need is ultimately to write for myself. I mock myself and I'm ironic about the way I speak about it because if I take it too seriously, it would be a pompous and boring thing to do. But at the same time I take each note I write very seriously – none of them are random.<br><br>The Internet Movie Database always lists you as being attached to multiple projects, so I was curious, what's Sharktail?<br><br>I complained to Jeffrey Katzenberg that I couldn't cross any more Red Seas, or deal with any more horses that can't speak – I wanted to do one of the fun animated movies instead. There's also a hip-hop element in Sharktail, and I haven't been there yet, so it's new territory! King Arthur is still in production, and I literally just got the first bits of footage just before you came here.<br><br>Are you working on all of these projects simultaneously?<br><br>I'm thinking about them! I'm also working with Jim Brooks on his new comedy, Spanglish.<br><br>And speaking of comedies, you recently did Matchstick Men for Ridley, which had a very Nino Rota vibe to it....<br><br>And I gave him credit! I thought, what if Nino had written the theme and I was just doing the variations? But I bet I'm going to get criticized for that because it's not like Gladiator.<br><br>So when did you last have a vacation?<br><br>Well, I went to Japan for a couple of days at the end of November for the Japanese premiere of Samurai, but look, I love what I do! In January I'll travel to Morocco because Ridley will be shooting his next movie, Kingdom of Heaven, so that's like a holiday!<br><br>My family and I are going away at Christmas, and what we used to do would be to rent a house in the mountains and go on these skiing holidays. It would be a crappy house, not as nice as the one we live in, my wife was still going to the market, and we're still washing our plates – so it wasn't a vacation, it was a lot of work! It's taken us a long time, but we just figured it out: we're not practical with vacations – we're staying at hotels! But while the Zimmer family isn't talented when it comes to vacations, we're talented when it comes to work!<br><br>I sat through Samurai the other day, and for the first time watched the whole movie from top to tail with everything finished and completed. It felt really good, better than a vacation. But luckily there were enough things wrong for me to think that I learned something from the experience, and now I can't wait for the next project to try these new ideas out.<br><br>The soundtrack to The Last Samurai is available from Elektra Records, and the film is currently in theaters. Matchstick Men is available on Varese Sarabande Records.<br><br>With thanks to Chet Mehta at Chasen & Co, Jason Cienkus at Warner Brothers, and Nina Lynch and Mark Wherry at Media Ventures for helping with this interview. And, of course, special thanks to Hans.Mulan get his release... through Disney+, 4th September.Mulan is being released on sept 4th. Can't wait to hear Harry's score!!!!Here's an interview about Last Samurai from Soundtrack.net https: //www.soundtrack. net/content/article/?id=112You can find an interview with Hans on his process for TLS on soundtrack.net somewhere, back in 2003 or 2004
The tracklist they posted has 58 tracks and yours contains only 54<br>interesting thing, He never really spoke about Last Samurai. but you have to realize, even when He speaks, its not always the truth. <br><br>The only thing I know, in 2013 doing press for Rush, He really said the hardest job was Last Samurai, well its not true according to himself, if you watch the behind the scenes stuff from Matchstick Men from 2003, right there He says that he was working on 3 huge films, (tears of the sun / Pirates / last samurai) and Mathstick men was the absolute hardest for him.<br><br>also Ed Zwick talks about working with Hans on the dvd commentary sometimes, but nothing really fancy.<br><br>Im sure there is an interview for this film with him, since he was at the premierI am struggling to find an interview where Hans speaks about this soundtrack. Does it even exist? <br>I spent the last hours digging but nothing. I always desired to hear some comments about it, like he does for the other works he's done.<br>I know it's a far stretch for Hans To release docu scores, but am really curious as to what Brave Miss World, Believer and Jalous of the Birds sound like...<br><br><br>@Mephariel<br>You can find Great Bear Rainforest on bleedingfingersmusic.com under Anze RozmanMondo only offered to send me a return label and a refund. No info yet on if they plan to fix it. :-/
Mine arrived today and is definitely sped up.LOL klaus badelt hardly composed pirates 1You know what? I love the booklet credits! Klaus Badelt is the same guy who scored Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl.Thanks Hybrid soldier for the good news<br>I can't wait to see the documental film and hear the score of lorne balfe & hans zimmer.A score will be released.<br><br>You can always count on Lorne for that. It's in the works.
What was the last Zimmer documentary score that they released outside of BBC? <br><br>I am still waiting for The Great Bear Rainforest.I hope they can the soundtrack release for "Rebuilding Paradise" composed by Hans zimmer & Lorne balfe, including an original song for the film. I hope there is a possibility that they will release the score.How to get this at all?Any news about Rebuilding Paradise soundtrack?@Hybrid:<br>Any news about a release for Ron Howard "Rebuilding Paradise" soundtrack by Hans ans Lorne. The documentary airing today. Any info will be much Appreciated.
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Hans ZimmerLorne BalfeAndrew ZackBob Badami
ComposerAdditional MusicScore CoordinatorMusic Supervisor
Sherlock Holmes
Label: WaterTower Music
Length: 54'40
HZimmer.com rating:        4/5
Fans rating:     rate at 1 out of 5 rate at 2 out of 5 rate at 3 out of 5 rate at 4 out of 5 rate at 5 out of 5   2/5 (26968 votes)
  1. Discombobulate (2:25)
    Hans Zimmer, Lorne Balfe
  2. Is It Poison, Nanny? (2:53)
    Lorne Balfe
  3. I Never Woke Up In Handcuffs Before (1:44)
    Hans Zimmer
  4. My Mind Rebels At Stagnation (4:31)
    Hans Zimmer, Lorne Balfe
  5. Data, Data, Data (2:15)
    Hans Zimmer
  6. He's Killed The Dog Again (3:15)
    Hans Zimmer, Lorne Balfe
  7. Marital Sabotage (3:44)
    Hans Zimmer
  8. Not In Blood, But In Bond (2:13)
    Hans Zimmer
  9. Ah, Putrefaction (1:50)
    Hans Zimmer, Lorne Balfe
  10. Panic, Shear Bloody Panic (2:38)
    Hans Zimmer, Lorne Balfe
  11. Psychological Recovery... 6 Months (18:18)
    Hans Zimmer, Lorne Balfe
  12. Catatonic (6:44)
    Hans Zimmer, Lorne Balfe
  13. Holmes (Hans 'n' Guy Version) (2:14) *
    Hans Zimmer
*Buy tickets in advance for Sherlock Holmes and receive a free exclusive of the song Holmes (Hans 'n' Guy Version) by Hans Zimmer on iTunes.
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Mollie reply Replies: 0 || 2010-09-03 00:00:00
I absolutely adore the Sherlock Holmes soundtrack, and the movie itself!
Well done - good work.

Tahabi Uski reply Replies: 0 || 2010-08-28 00:00:00
Im 16 and every day i lestn metal , rock music but when i see the movies with your movies i enjoy that please continue your great job.

João Rebelo reply Replies: 0 || 2010-08-28 00:00:00
Hans Zimmer do great music? He do AMZING musics omg no words to describe that, i hope that you receive an oscar this year !

steam reply Replies: 0 || 2010-07-14 00:00:00
awsomeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

Matthias Wieprecht reply Replies: 0 || 2010-07-14 00:00:00
Leider ist der Content nicht in Deutschland zu sehen, weil er etwas von Sony Music enthält. Ich finde das sehr schade. Diese Einschränkungen sind sicher manchmal angebracht, aber hier wird deutlich übertrieben, fürchte ich...

Great reply Replies: 0 || 2010-06-11 00:00:00
You make always really great music, it is ot important that I love metal, your music is just best to this movies, I bought yesterday soundtrack CD from Sherlock! Please, make always so great music!

Hybrid Soldier reply Replies: 0 || 2010-06-06 00:00:00
I detailed the tracklist, if you're interested... ;)

Bondo reply Replies: 0 || 2010-06-06 00:00:00
Once again we see Lorne Balfe's large role... =D

cleverclogs reply Replies: 0 || 2010-06-04 00:00:00
I am SOOO annoyed that the wav download wasn't actually surround sound. Wtf is the point in just decoding a stereo track as 5.1 ?

Hybrid Soldier reply Replies: 0 || 2010-06-04 00:00:00
The bonus track was a limited edition only, for a cetain period... I don't think it can be purchased any more (and it was US only anyway)... :|

Bast reply Replies: 0 || 2010-06-04 00:00:00
I am Swiss and in iTunes Swiss they is not the bonus track.

Anonymous reply Replies: 0 || 2010-06-03 00:00:00
iTunes

Bast reply Replies: 0 || 2010-06-03 00:00:00
Where i can find Holmes (Hans 'n' Guy Version) ???

TABATON reply Replies: 0 || 2010-05-13 00:00:00
I WAS REALLY SURPRISE FOR THE BEATIFUL SOUND TRACK FO SHERLOCK HOLMES...........
I SAY"MY MY ZIMMER IS A MASTER OF MUSIC"!!!!!!!
THE SONGS I LIKE MUCHT ARE:
1-DISCOMBOBULATE
AND
AH,PUTREFACTION!!!!
GOOOOOOOOOOOD WORK HANS!!!!!!!
TABATON!)

the wake reply Replies: 0 || 2010-05-11 00:00:00
Music for movie is usually completed by the filmed scenes. This soundtrack stands on his own, perfectly and magnificently.
It’s a long, long time since I heard something so wonderful, and I hope I’ll soon find the CD in the shops!

brian reply Replies: 0 || 2010-05-10 00:00:00
i am sure it isn't
they just have copied zimmer score. shameful !

Hale reply Replies: 0 || 2010-05-09 00:00:00
Maybe it's an arrangement with Zimmer himself..

jon reply Replies: 0 || 2010-05-08 00:00:00
have a look : www.youtube.com/watch?v=h_5m3c7wJN4

Ronan reply Replies: 0 || 2010-05-08 00:00:00
In first, i want to congratulate Mister Zimmer for this score (and all of his music in general)

But I have to advertise that the french channel TF1 has plagiarized the theme of Sherlock Holmes on his last TV-movie Vidocq. Every one can be listen the "Vidocq theme" here :
http://videos.tf1.fr/vidocq/presentation-des-personnages-de- la-serie-vidocq-5811461.html

And I think plagiarism is forbidden by law, no ?

Amicably - Ronan - PS : sorry for my bad English...

Paul reply Replies: 0 || 2010-05-03 00:00:00
Alex - There is an academy promo, but it is the same as the soundtrack album. It's mastered a little differently, and different tracks have slightly different lengths (by 1 or 2 seconds) but no extra music.

vholder reply Replies: 0 || 2010-04-25 00:00:00
Great soundtrack! Thanks to all the artists, actors and musicians! Authentic with a patina complimenting the mystery and grittiness of this wonderfully re-inspired story.

Kroshka reply Replies: 0 || 2010-04-23 00:00:00
I love your music! Trying to pick 'sherlock holmes' theme by ear on my piano but its so complex :( I adore it!

Pleaseee reply Replies: 0 || 2010-04-22 00:00:00
What is the name of the music, when Sherlock and Watson fight with twi man and one big man at the Rearden?

caryn reply Replies: 0 || 2010-04-17 00:00:00
I was wondering about how to find the section of score that plays during the fight in Rierdon's house. I've listened to the soundtrack through and through and can't seem to locate it anywhere. Does anyone know what it is or which title it's under?

Colleen reply Replies: 0 || 2010-04-14 00:00:00
I am in love with the Sherlock Holmes sountrack. I teach Orchestra in Indiana and am curious about how long until a school orchestra arrangment will be available?

Michael reply Replies: 0 || 2010-04-12 00:00:00
where can i get the sheet music for "i never woke up in handcuffs before"?
please help its for a school play and I think it would be pretty awesome if we had this song

Mylène reply Replies: 0 || 2010-04-07 00:00:00
Very good sondtrack .amazing . I just lestening that .

Gabriel reply Replies: 0 || 2010-04-04 00:00:00
Very goood, that's it, Very very good.

Jo reply Replies: 0 || 2010-04-03 00:00:00
Amazing soundtrack, I can't stop listening to it!!! BEST EVER!!!

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Sherlock Holmes soundtrack - Hans Zimmer 2009