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Composer Hans Zimmer talks about his approach to scoring Man of Steel

Apr. 5, 2013by:
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Composer Hans Zimmer is easily one of the most influential and groundbreaking composers in Hollywood. His work on everything from GLADIATOR to THELMA AND LOUISE to DRIVING MISS DAISY to THE ROCK to THE DARK KNIGHT to PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN to INCEPTION to...okay, I'll stop now.  You get the idea. Zimmer has also paved the way for many of the big name composers working today, mentoring the likes of John Powell, Ramin Djawadi, Harry Gregson-Williams, Trevor Morris, and many more.  He's kind of like the Godfather of contemporary movie scores in that sense.

After creating a masterful score to Christopher Nolan's DARK KNIGHT trilogy (along with James Newton Howard), Zimmer found himself roped into another iconic DC character; the MAN OF STEEL, this time for director Zack Snyder. Speaking to CNN, Zimmer talked about his approach to the score and how he got the gig via Internet rumors. 

On comparison's to his score for The Bible mini-series and MAN OF STEEL:

"Both stories are passions about a struggle to do the right thing. For Superman, it was a really simple question for me. What does it take to become a good man? To be good? And what does that mean in our more and more complex society? Do any of these values still resonate with us?"

On taking on John Williams' classic theme:

"Look, that was daunting. Seriously. He's the greatest film composer out there, without a doubt, and it happens to be one of his iconic pieces of music, so I spent three months just procrastinating and not even getting a start on the thing, because I was so intimidated: 'Oh my God, I'm following in John Williams' footsteps.'"

On the human factor of Superman's story:

"I kept thinking of the story as, What if you are extraordinary, and your entire ambition is to join humanity? To become human? What does it mean to become human? What does it mean to be an outsider who really wants to join the human race?"

On the tone of the score for MAN OF STEEL:

"Everything's tinged with irony and sarcasm and bitterness and darkness these days. But this Superman is something lighter, celebrating everything that was good and fine about America," such as small towns "where people don't lock their doors, neighbors get together, and families are families."

On the journalist question that led to an internet rumor that led to him being hired for the gig:

"A journalist asked me (at an 'Inception' party) if I was going to do Superman, and I hadn't even heard of it, so I went, 'Absolutely no way. Somehow in the noise of that party, that got misconstrued as 'Absolutely Hans is doing it.' It was all over the Internet that I was doing Superman, and I'd never even met Zack! So I phoned him up, 'I'm really sorry, this wasn't my doing, this is a misunderstanding.' And he said, 'Oh! It's great that you phoned. Maybe we should meet and talk.'"

I couldn't be more excited to hear Zimmer's take on Supes. He's rarely failed to deliver something spectacular and I look forward to hearing what he brings to the mythos.  Zimmer's MAN OF STEEL score will be release on June 11, 2013 (Preorder here!).  He will also be scoring Gore Verbinski's THE LONE RANGER and Ron Howards RUSH, both out this year.

MAN OF STEEL hits theaters on June 14, 2013.

Extra Tidbit: What score are you most looking forward to this year?

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9:08PM on 04/05/2013
While we're talking Superman scores, I also really love what the late Shirley Walker did for Superman: The Animated Series. [link]
While we're talking Superman scores, I also really love what the late Shirley Walker did for Superman: The Animated Series. [link]
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3:54PM on 04/05/2013

Xtra Tidbit

Michael Giacchino - "Star Trek Into Darkness"
Hans Zimmer - "Man Of Steel"
Howard Shore - "Hobbit: Desolation Of Smaug"
Patrick Doyle - "Thor 2: The Dark World"
Ramin Djawadi - "Pacific Rim"
Marco Beltrami - "The Wolverine"
Graeme Revell - "Riddick"
Michael Giacchino - "Star Trek Into Darkness"
Hans Zimmer - "Man Of Steel"
Howard Shore - "Hobbit: Desolation Of Smaug"
Patrick Doyle - "Thor 2: The Dark World"
Ramin Djawadi - "Pacific Rim"
Marco Beltrami - "The Wolverine"
Graeme Revell - "Riddick"
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3:36PM on 04/05/2013
Zimmer: "It will be awesome."

Okay I'm good to go.
Zimmer: "It will be awesome."

Okay I'm good to go.
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3:33PM on 04/05/2013
If Zimmer uses the William's score in any way, I'll die a happy man. That score fits Superman the way Bond's theme fits him.
If Zimmer uses the William's score in any way, I'll die a happy man. That score fits Superman the way Bond's theme fits him.
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2:47PM on 04/05/2013
Whatever he came up with it will be truly amazing! Zimmer greatly broadened my taste in music. I was an 80's hair band fan. Then I watched Backdraft in the theater and the his score mesmerized me and opened me up to a whole new level of great music.
Whatever he came up with it will be truly amazing! Zimmer greatly broadened my taste in music. I was an 80's hair band fan. Then I watched Backdraft in the theater and the his score mesmerized me and opened me up to a whole new level of great music.
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2:14PM on 04/05/2013

Original theme will play over credits.

I am all but confirmed that we will hear the original score, redone by Hans with a few tweaks in the credits. Other than that it will be all new themes and songs and I cannot wait.
I am all but confirmed that we will hear the original score, redone by Hans with a few tweaks in the credits. Other than that it will be all new themes and songs and I cannot wait.
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1:54PM on 04/05/2013
I am very intrigued to hear what zimmer has done for Man of Steel.
I am very intrigued to hear what zimmer has done for Man of Steel.
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