Storied composer John Williams hints at retiring from film after scoring Indiana Jones 5

John Williams, retirement, Indiana Jones 5

Legendary composer John Williams is thinking about hanging up his baton after decades of creating some of the most memorable music in Hollywood. Williams needs no introduction, but if you’re unfamiliar, he’s the Oscar-winning composer behind scores for JawsStar WarsSupermanHookSaving Private Ryan, and more. While speaking with Associated Press, Williams hinted at retiring from film, not music.

“At the moment I’m working on ‘Indiana Jones 5,’ which Harrison Ford — who’s quite a bit younger than I am — I think has announced will be his last film. So, I thought: If Harrison can do it, then perhaps I can, also.”

At 90 years old, Williams thinks the commitment required for blockbuster films is a bit much. “At this point in life, [it’s] a long commitment to me.” However, Williams won’t “kill the music” entirely. He said, “I don’t want to be seen as categorically eliminating any activity.”

Williams recently scored the Star Wars series Obi-Wan Kenobi for Disney+. He also released the album A Gathering of Friends,” which pairs him with the cellist Yo-Yo Ma and the New York Philharmonic orchestra. The album features a new rendition of the theme from Schindler’s List alongside Yo-Yo Ma’s performance of “With Malice Toward None” from Lincoln and a guitar and cello arrangement of “A Prayer for Peace” from Munich.

While reflecting on his storied career and decades of life experience, Williams remarked, “It’s given me the ability to breathe, the ability to live and understand that there’s more to corporal life. Without being religious, which I’m not especially, there is a spiritual life, an artistic life, a realm that’s above the mundanities of everyday realities. Music can raise one’s thinking to the level of poetry. We can reflect on how necessary music has been for humanity. I always like to speculate that music is older than language, that we were probably beating drums and blowing on reeds before we could speak. So it’s an essential part of our humanity.”

“It’s given me my life,” Williams added.

What do you think about Williams possibly hanging up his baton as a composer for Hollywood films? What is your favorite score or song from Williams’ legendary career? Let us know in the comments section below.

Source: Associated Press

About the Author

Born and raised in New York, then immigrated to Canada, Steve Seigh has been a editor, columnist, and critic since 2012. He started with Ink & Pixel, a column celebrating the magic and evolution of animation, before launching the companion YouTube series Animation Movies Revisited. He's also the host of the Talking Comics Podcast, a personality-driven audio show focusing on comic books, film, music, and more. You'll rarely catch him without headphones on his head and pancakes on his breath.