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Confirmed: Alexandre Desplat to Score "Deathly Hallows: Part 1" Film

DH Film
Posted by: Edward
January 19, 2010, 12:10 PM

Update: This morning, we received word from a number of readers regarding a rumor composer Alexandre Desplat was set to score the "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1" film.  We can now report this rumor is indeed true, thanks to our friends at MuggleNet who were able to validate that this piece of news was confirmed by Mr. Desplat's agent.

FilmScoreMonthy is reporting that composer Alexandre Desplat has been tapped to score the upcoming "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1" film.  Describing the 48 year old composer an "overnight sensation that took decades to occur," the feature on the 2009 Top Forty Composer Countdown list includes the first part of the final Potter film as one of this upcoming projects.  The profile notes:
He has become the director-of-choice for many of the world's most acclaimed directors, including Fincher, Stephen Frears, Terence Malick and Roman Polanski, and has signed for one his most challenging and highest-profile assignments yet, the penultimate entry in the Harry Potter saga.
WHAT'S NEXT: The Ghostwriter, Harry Potter and the Deadly Hallows Part 1, A Prophet, The Special Relationship, Tamara Drewe, The Tree of Life
As noted on Mr. Desplat's official website, his previous work includes "Julie and Julia," "New Moon," "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button," and "The Golden Compass."

While this is indeed exciting news, we have yet to receive official word on a role for Mr. Desplat in the "Deathly Hallows: Part 1" film and will update you as soon as we do.  Stay close to Leaky for the latest on this "Deathly Hallows" news and more.

Many thanks to Erna, Jon, and Cellar Door for mailing.

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1373 Points

Well… I liked the music for “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”. I even downloaded one track from itunes. Moreover, I don’t blaim him for working on New Moon soundtrack. But seriously, we all know that HP is much better than Twilight, but that doesn’t mean that Twilight doesn’t have a right to exist. We aren’t evil))) Let’s hope he’ll make every effort to create his best music for DH Part I!!!!!!!

Posted by Pollytomat on January 21, 2010, 08:47 AM report to moderator
3019 Points

All of this DH news makes me anticipate it even more!! I think he’s going to be able to bring a lot of the subtle scenes with out being “corny cliche, popcorn pop themes, and crashing waves of timpani, strings, and horns” as rotfang07 so wonderfully said.

Posted by Slytherins do it better on January 21, 2010, 09:33 AM report to moderator
668 Points

I don’t know him, but am hoping for the best!

Posted by Little Deatheater on January 21, 2010, 10:04 AM report to moderator

Wow, I have to agree that rotfang seems super-biased against anything coming from “Hollywood” (in other words, America) and pro-anything European, just because it’s European. John Williams has been nominated for an Academy Award 45 times in his life…that’s no small feat. He’s one of the most respected composers in film today. To say that his scores are loud…well, I really don’t know what kind of music YOU would put into the Qudditch match in the first Potter film…a slow, quiet, lilting tune? Williams has composed beautiful music for the first three films…A Window to the Past is quiet, subtle, and beautiful, with much of the song being played on a single pan flute. He can be big when he has to, quiet when he has to…can you say that composers like Hooper and Desplat can do an action scene if necessary? Because, I hate to say it, quiet and subtle won’t quite manage it for the final battle at Hogwarts, which takes up a huge portion of the last part of the book. I’ve listened to some of Desplat’s score for Benjamin Button, and it is very beautiful and moving, but he only had to score one semi-action scene for that film (the submarine battle). Loud and boisterous music does not equal “popcorn movie” or “cliched” or “Hollywood-ized”. If that was the case, half of the epic operas out there would be considered garbage. And to be honest, why the elitist tone against “popcorn movies” in the first place. I love Harry Potter, but it isn’t Shakespeare. These aren’t little indie gems that are being produced here. They are blockbusters. The Wizard of Oz would be considered a popcorn movie; I consider it a classic. Most of Walt Disney’s stuff would be considered popcorn movies, and they are also classics in my opinion. Just stop with all the sniping at us poor pitiful mortals who actually like action-packed fantasy with old-style Hollywood scores.

Posted by critterfur on January 21, 2010, 02:06 PM report to moderator
1372 Points

Like everyone, I seem to be keeping my fingers crossed for Williams to return for DH Part II. Desplat is a very good composer though, and I’m excited to see what he has in store for the upcoming movie.

Posted by elaphantluv34 on January 21, 2010, 02:06 PM report to moderator

And just to add to my comment above, I’ve never understood the prejudice against anyone non-British being associated with the Potter films, like John Williams, Chris Columbus, Steve Kloves, etc. I understand the need to keep the cast British, but to insist that only a European can understand how to direct a movie about other Europeans, or only a European can compose music for other Europeans, doesn’t make sense. That’s like saying a western could only be directed by an American director, or that Lord of the Rings should have been directed by a British director instead of one from New Zealand. There’s a time and a place for nationalistic pride, but I don’t think it necessarily follows that a movie will be great simply because it’s removed from American influence. Warner Brothers is an American company which has put up the money to make these films and has truthfully interfered very little in the process of transfering these books to the screen, and very respectful of Jo Rowling’s thoughts and ideas. Sorry to be so defensive, but I am an American fan of the books and movies, and am tired of constantly hearing that every American influence on the Potter films has been negative.

Posted by critterfur on January 21, 2010, 02:15 PM report to moderator
169 Points

Hang on I thought John Williams had been confirmed for Deathly Hallows part one and two? Who the hell is this guy anyway?

Posted by NutsAboutHarry on January 22, 2010, 12:36 AM report to moderator
150 Points

Rotfang07, I fail to see what was so predictable about using renaissance instruments, big band jazz numbers, crazy woodwind work, and solo violins in POA? You might not like the volume, but that particular mixtures of sounds can hardly be called obvious. All Hooper did was use a traditional orchestra, which every other score out there uses…isn’t that predictable?

For the record, I absolutely agree that Williams can be over-the-top, but you’re not backing your point at all when you speak in absolutes. “Williams has no heart and soul and can only do big.” That’s nonsense. Your inability to look past his famous works is what’s putting a hole in your repetitive posts here. I notice that you have not responded at all to other people’s examples of Williams’ quieter works, which just proves my point even more. Look around the internet..POA is widely regarded as one of Williams’ best scores, and it does have many quiet moments. In a three minute underscore, you’ll just focus on the twenty seconds of dissonant horns while you ignore the quiet stuff.

Now, do you have problems with all loud, epic music, or just Williams? Can music never reach grand heights in films? I can understand your dislike Williams (biased as it may be) but to say that everything should remain quiet isn’t very fair. What did you think of Hooper’s loud moments, such as the Advance Guard flight in OOTP and the Journey to the Cave in HBP, and what makes those different from Williams’ grand statements?

Posted by starlesswinter on January 22, 2010, 03:07 AM report to moderator
281 Points

He’s really a great, great composer, the Benjamin Button score almost brings me to tears! I’m not worried at all about the quality of the soundtrack, I’m 100% sure it’ll be mindblowing. The one thing I’m worried about though is the fact that he didn’t listen to the Twilight music before scoring New Moon. Now I don’t give a rat’s tail about the Twilight franchise, but I’m just hoping he won’t do the same for HP. Of course, HP’s music is far more memorable than Twilight’s, so I’m sure he knows better than to ignore it (and Yates definitely knows better than to allow it). So all in all, as long as Hedwig’s Theme survives, great, great news for the HP fanchise.
Oh, and I know this is just wishful thinking, but I hope Umbridge’s Theme returns for her scene.

Posted by lgghanem on January 22, 2010, 06:57 AM report to moderator
401 Points

Poor Desplat; what a letdown (Or should I say “splatdown?”). He probably doesn’t know how many Potter fans have been praying for John Williams’ return. WHAT IS YATES THINKING?? We’re talking about one of the most anticipated endings in film history, with classic potential, and he toddles off and hires some mediocre composer with a meagre track record and probably NO affinity to Harry Potter. I don’t care what films John Williams is working on: Yates should get him at any price.

Posted by All Was Well on January 22, 2010, 06:59 AM report to moderator
160 Points

Personally, i would really enjoy having John Williams return as composing the score, because not only is he a fantastic composer, but it would really end HP on a high note. Beginning with the same composer, then ending with it. His version of “Hedwig’s Theme” is by far the best! HP4-6’s just sounded out of place and like it didn’t belong there. I still don’t see why John couldn’t score all of the films, unless he had some scheduling conflict. But i loved HP1-3’s score, PoA was phenomenal! I have the CD and i love listening to “hedwig’s theme” and “a window to the past”, so beautifully written & scored!!! John is a fantastic composer, he wrote some of the most recognized theme songs in films. The score of “Schindler’s List” and “Indiana Jones” are just phenomenal! He needs to come back & finish series with his music!!!!

Posted by harrypotterchic02 <3ROAR!<3 on January 22, 2010, 08:16 AM report to moderator
160 Points

Just wanted to add that I agree with critterfur, as i am also an American fan of the films and books! :) And i agree with All Was Well, i kinda feel sorry for the Desplat guy, but then again I really would enjoy listening to John’s interpretation of music for the final film! tears i still can’t believe that it is almost over, gosh that’s so depressing.

Posted by harrypotterchic02 <3ROAR!<3 on January 22, 2010, 08:25 AM report to moderator
53 Points

Nooo I don’t mean hes bad, but it must be John Williams this is horrbile! Ill pray for part II

Posted by WillowSauce on January 22, 2010, 08:35 AM report to moderator

I LOVE American film and music. I think African-American music is the basis of all great modern popular music. I adore Gerchwin, Bernstein, Copland, and all the rest, and think James Horner (Field of Dreams) is a great example of a younger American composer who can deliver heart and soul to a soundtrack.

So it’s nothing to do with being hostile to America or American culture, it’s hostility to a particular type of film-making that emanates from Hollywood, or even Bollywood, studios, that is predictable, noisy, superficial, cringe-making, obvious, sign-posted, and dumbed down to the point that it looks, sounds, and tastes, like cardboard.

Spielberg and Williams epitomise that kind of Trans-for-derrrs, Home Alonish, Jurassic Whatsit, Star Yawns, Indiana Jaws etc etc mass-produced pap. There’s nothing wrong with pap. I just think HP deserves better. In the same way I think the Holocaust and African slavery deserve better than Shindlers Laundry List or Ham-Ishtad.

Actually HP is better than Shakespeare, which is often as dull as dishwater. At least Rowling isn’t that. Note the obvious: the more the Warners left HP to fend for itself the better it’s got. Does that mean American Producers are rubbish? No, absolutely not. It just means that left to their own devices the cosmopolitan crew at Leavesden are capable of escaping the Spielberg-Williams genre and are able to create something so much better. It took guts and intelligence on the part of Warners to leave them alone and they should be commended for it.

As for HP being a blockbuster, it’s only a blockbuster because HP was already a blockbuster, one that moneymen would be insane to allow to pass by. If the Brits had been left to make HP without US money it would probably have been a weird, low budget, probably badly produced, character-driven quaint little film that might or might not have made a few bucks, and would definitely have had at least one American actor in it in order to appeal to the US market. So, no, I’m all for American money, marketing, and production values. What I’m against is predictable forgettable irritating tosh that needs VOLUME and SIGNPOSTING to make a point or to tell a story. Williams-Spielberg epitomise that kind of cinema and the further they are from HP the better.

That said, I’m resigned to having a crash-bang-wallop williamsian DH2 finish, because Heyman and Yates appear to want it. It’s a mistake on their part but, hey, they’ve already done so much that’s brilliant, they are bound, like Dumbledore, to mess up big time at least once. If I were them I’d stick with Desplat for DH2 if he would be prepared to do it. By the way it was Hooper who jumped ship. He’d had enough after puting everything into the 2 best soundtracks (by a mile) to date.

Posted by rotfang07 on January 22, 2010, 09:10 AM report to moderator
23699 Points

Oh my God! I think this is GREAT! New Moon Score was Perfect IMO. And The Curious Case of Benjamin Button… It was nominated for an Oscar for the Score and the Score was fabulous! I am SO excited! This is gonna be an Oscar worthy Score, I’m telling you!

Posted by Maxtina Potter (Aty) on January 22, 2010, 09:51 AM report to moderator
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