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Nicholas Hooper on Scoring Half-Blood Prince

HBP Film
Posted by: sue
July 24, 2009, 08:39 AM

Composer Nicholas Hooper has given another interview, this time to IFMagazine, where he speaks again about scoring the film Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. Mr. Hooper speaks on bringing in some of the cues from his music for Order of the Phoenix as well as working with the now iconic "Hedwig's Theme"  for HBP. Quotage:

Although a lot of things seem logical after the event, I tend to write instinctively, allowing things to develop in their own way. It would be easy to say that I meant to use such and such a theme in a "brilliant stroke of genius.” But in fact a lot of what works comes out of trying things out first, and then discussing them later. A bit like throwing paint at the wall one day and coming in to have a look at it the next to see what shape it makes. The use of the Possession theme from HP V (where Voldemort possesses Harry) came back as an idea when Voldemort is first mentioned by the name of Tom Riddle in Dumbledore's speech at the start of the new term. It seemed to work there and gradually worked its way into the movie following Dumbledore's own involvement with Voldemort. This along with a new theme created the DNA for the whole score. Placing John Williams' themes became obvious as we went along. The beginning of the film has to have at least a hint of Hedwig's Theme (look out for the end of it in the brass just before the Death Eaters attack London). Later in the film, Hedwig's theme gave a sense of being back in a POTTER movie, so it was used on the train to Hogwarts and Harry's arrival at the Weasley's home. I also enjoyed using a bit of William's Quidditch theme in the Quidditch match to point up Ron's amazing goal saving.

Readers will recall of course, as first noted here on July 14, then several days later, Mr. Hooper will not be returning to provide the score for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, as legendary John Williams is indeed in talks to return to the series and create the music for the final Harry Potter films. Nicholas Hooper says again:

"I have made the decision not to do the next two HARRY POTTER films. I’ll be handing the baton on to another composer. It has been a roller coaster ride, and, I feel, an enormous privilege to have the opportunity to have scored such great films and such a fantastic story."

Thanks so much Alex, and to IFMagazine!

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2939 Points

I just got the HBP soundtrack a few hours ago. It was a very similar to OotP at parts, but overall really nice. Even so, I’m pulling for John Williams to return – his work is really iconic.

Posted by Awakened on July 24, 2009, 06:07 PM report to moderator
312 Points

I loved the music on the film. Really great stuff.

Posted by got2lovme on July 24, 2009, 06:32 PM report to moderator
358 Points

John Williams would be fabulous! If not him, why not Patrick Doyle??

Posted by weasleywannabe1997 on July 24, 2009, 06:41 PM report to moderator
1275 Points

Yeah, he did a good job

Posted by Jesse~{ROAR}~ on July 24, 2009, 07:07 PM report to moderator
27 Points

Hooper did an excellent job scoring both films, he really did handle the different themes throughout very well, but John Williams is probably my favourite conductor (of more modern times), so I’ll be very excited if he returns.

Posted by Kevin on July 24, 2009, 07:44 PM report to moderator
3134 Points

I really enjoyed Hooper’s work. Thanks for a job well done!

337 Points

Gryffindor’s need to roar!!!

Posted by Mugglejeff on July 24, 2009, 09:22 PM report to moderator
337 Points

Gryffindor’s need to roar!!!

Posted by Mugglejeff on July 24, 2009, 09:22 PM report to moderator
92 Points

Congratulations Nicholas Hooper!!!! Great scores!!! I really enjoy your music and it blends really well with the HP movies. I will be listening for a long time to come :D

Posted by hibou333 (Roar) on July 24, 2009, 09:53 PM report to moderator
2976 Points

I like the score to HBP on its own, but I was so disappointed with it actually in the film. Quite often the music really didn’t match the scene that was playing….

But, like I said, it sounds good by itself!

Posted by Jade Danielle (WBM) on July 24, 2009, 10:51 PM report to moderator
27 Points

I don’t have anything against Hooper, but John Williams is a film score legend. He created Hedwig’s Theme, which has defined the entire Harry Potter brand. I would be thrilled for him to come back!

Posted by DillonLarson on July 25, 2009, 12:31 AM report to moderator
879 Points

OotP and HBP are the only two Potter soundtracks I own— I’m sad to see him go!

Posted by deadtree ♥WBM♥ on July 25, 2009, 01:45 AM report to moderator
879 Points

OotP and HBP are the only two Potter soundtracks I own— I’m sad to see him go!

Posted by deadtree ♥WBM♥ on July 25, 2009, 01:45 AM report to moderator
70 Points

He scored HBP??? He basicly copy-pasted score from movie 5. Weasley theme is the same.

Posted by nibbler on July 25, 2009, 06:17 AM report to moderator
306 Points

I loved the score for Order of the Phoenix, but was rather unimpressed with what he did for Half-Blood Prince.

His compositions are usually good, and the themes that were picked up from OotP were beautifully adapted. HBP was probably better done as a movie, score included. I was just sorry not to have more new stuff, that’s all.

Also towards the end; I’d have liked something more significant for the the whole end of the movie. The cave was allright (I think, I cant remember it too well), but DD’s death could, and should, have been so much more!

Posted by Nora McGonagall on July 25, 2009, 07:09 PM report to moderator
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