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The Summer of Hans Zimmer

Published July 12, 2007 in Movie Music
By Ryan Parsons | Image property of 20th Century Fox.
The Simpsons Movie Poster The Simpsons Movie
Since I am a fan of movie music, I figured I'd let this release of self promotion slide. Well, that and I'm a big fan of Hans Zimmer.

The Summer of Hans Zimmer


If you're a movie fan, chances are you have a melody or two rattling around in your head that emanated from the creative mind of Hans Zimmer. Between this summer's blockbuster, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End and the upcoming Simpsons Movie, Hans Zimmer is providing the soundtrack to a whole summer's worth of entertainment for millions of happy filmgoers. His Pirates' soundtrack currently enjoys a position in the Top 20 on Billboard's Top 200, which would be great news for a CD in any genre.

But it's not just aficionados of the big screen that are getting a dose of Hans: two remix versions of his piece, "Jack's Suite" from the current Pirates of the Caribbean film, are enjoying wide airplay on both satellite and terrestrial radio stations and dance clubs nationwide.

As one learns a little bit more about Hans, his versatility and ear for accessible melodies becomes evident.



(and here comes the list of vanity)

• He is completely self-taught. With no formal training, Hans learned music through experimentation and collaboration with contemporary artists.

• Hans first entered the pop music arena in London playing keyboard and synthesizer as part of two new wave bands, Ultravox and The Buggles. You can even catch a glimpse of him playing keys in the first video ever played on MTV--the historic "Video Killed the Radio Star," by The Buggles

• He attributes his apprenticeship with evocative English composer, Stanley Myers as the launching pad to his film-composing career.

• He was handpicked by Barry Levinson for his first major feature soundtrack, Rain Man in 1988 which garnered the first of seven Academy Award nominations.

• With 1995's Crimson Tide, he pioneered the integration of electronic music with traditional orchestral arrangements.

• Interestingly, his favorite love theme is the one he wrote for the film, Hannibal, a film centered around a serial killer (and the sequel to the award-winning Silence of the Lambs).

• His favorite movie theme was written for 1976's Assault on Precinct 13.

• When Dreamworks was founded, Hans Zimmer became the first composer to be named head of music at a major studio, 1997-2005, since Alfred Newman at Fox in the '50s.

• Of the best-selling soundtracks of all time--only two are scores. Hans' Lion King score is one of them for which he won an Academy Award.

• He first stepped on a concert stage to perform live in 2000 with a 100-piece orchestra and 100-piece choir at the Ghent International Film Festival.

• Hans has created a film music franchise with Jim Brooks: the 5 films are I'll Do Anything, As Good As It Gets, Riding in Cars with Boys, Spanglish, and The Simpsons Movie.

• Hans has over 100 major film scores to his credit including 3 "Best Picture" winners, Gladiator, Rain Man, and Driving Miss Daisy.

• In addition to Pirates and the Simpsons, Zimmer has had great success providing music for a diverse group of Super Heroes, Senior Citizens, Jungle Animals and Fish, the Military, Japanese Swordsmen, Ancient Warriors, Baseball Players, Fire Fighters, Race Car Drivers, Maniacs, Teenagers, The Clergy, Inanimate Objects and Spies.

• Hans Zimmer won an Oscar, and has been awarded 2 Golden Globes (for Gladiator, and The Da Vinci Code), 3 Grammys and a Tony.

You can hear Hans next in The Simpsons Movie.

The Simpsons Movie opens to theatres on July 27th.

For the trailers, more posters, synopsis and more movie info, go to The Simpsons Movie Movie Page.

Stay tuned for updates.

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Ryan Parsons
Sources: Image property of 20th Century Fox.
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