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Film Composers Who Impersonate Other Film Composers

Hi there!

I finally caught up with watching the Steve McQueen film SHAME at the
weekend, starring Michael Fassbender and Carey Mulligan. In the opening scenes,
there is Michael Fassbender riding the New York subway. This sequence is scored
with a composition called "Brandon" written by Harry Escott, and it got me
thinking - this piece of music sounds incredibly similar to the HANS ZIMMER
composition, "Journey to the Line" from THE THIN RED LINE soundtrack. I have
played this piece "Brandon" on YouTube and others are saying the same thing:
that Harry Escott has ripped off or copied Hans Zimmer. I have to agree, Brandon
is about 99% Journey to the Line. I do very much like "Brandon" and the way it
is used in the scene, and I've even thought of downloading it from the SHAME
soundtrack on iTunes - but it's incredible similarity to Zimmer's Journey to the
Line is giving me pause. It's also got me thinking: What about ALEXANDRE
DESPLAT? He is a composer I'm not sure how I feel about: I mean I like SOME of
his scores like SYRIANA and parts of ZERO DARK THIRTY. But with ZERO DARK
THIRTY: the composition named: "SEALS Take Off" is basically JOHN BARRY back
from the dead. Desplat has an uncanny ability to impersonate the sound of other
film composers when it is required of him: the Presidential music he wrote for
THE IDES OF MARCH sounds exactly like something JOHN WILLIAMS would write.
I know Desplat is probably the most in-demand A-list film composer working in
Hollywood today - he is certainly the most prolific composer since JERRY
GOLDSMITH was. But Goldsmith was consistently good in my opinion, and I'm not
sure I can say the same thing about Desplat. What also concerns me is that it
was announced some weeks ago that DESPLAT has been given the assignment to
score the next STAR WARS film after THE FORCE AWAKENS. Sure, Desplat has
proved that he can follow on from Williams because he scored one of the HARRY
POTTER films, and I know John Williams is getting old and is in semi-retirement
now, but I think: if you want the John Williams STAR WARS sound - hire John
Williams to write the score, and don't hire a John Williams impersonator.

This is how I feel, I'm just putting this out there for discussion. In closing: Does
anybody else feel the same way I do?

Best wishes, Dan.

DannyBowes, April 27, 2015; 2:25 PM

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