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In the world of music composers, we tend to make note of the select few elite masters of the trade. John Williams returning to the Star Wars franchise? Hell yeah. Michael Giacchino scoring Brad Bird’s Tomorrowland? We’ll take it. But Hans Zimmer’s recently announced collaboration with Pharrell Williams for the score of Marc Webb’s highly anticipated The Amazing Spider-Man 2 had us a little quizzical. And now we’re completely taken aback as a musical "supergroup" has formed for this film, according to a press release, comprised of The Smiths’ legendary non-Morrissey songwriter Johnny Marr, producer and Eurythmics musician Dave Stewart, and Incubus guitarist Mike Einziger. So, does this sound like a great idea for a movie score, or a mess as chaotic as the Sgt. Pepper album cover?
The news was announced by Sony Pictures’ Worldwide Music president Lia Vollack, who said "this kind of collaboration is only possible because of who Marc Webb is – not only director but also a musician – combined with who Hans is and what Spider-Man means to so many people. Nobody has ever approached film music in this way before and this likely can never be replicated."
Those are pretty dramatic words, considering I’m not sure how many filmmakers want such a hodgepodge of musicians, regardless of their individual talent, responsible for the bulk of their films’ emotional impact. Granted, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 will probably still follow Zimmer’s disappointingly generic streak as of late, as heard in films such as The Lone Ranger and Man of Steel. But at least he’s happy about it.
"Marc and I were talking about Spider-Man," Zimmer said in the statement, "and as the word got out, so many of our friends and musicians started calling us up, wanting to be a part of it, because they love Spider-Man…With all of these hugely talented people wanting to join us, it was Marc who said, ‘Why not start a band?’ Marc and I have had a great start jamming with everybody, and we still have a few surprises up our sleeve."
Williams’ previous work in film scoring with Zimmer was mostly limited to orchestral drum work, though he did do a bit for Despicable Me and its sequel. Einziger, who has been battling carpal tunnel in recent years, scored the Goetz brothers thriller Scenic Route, while Stewart most recently did the music for the celeb-meet series . And Marr previously worked his guitar magic with Zimmer on the score for Christopher Nolan’s Inception.
I can’t imagine these guys all working as a "band" together, and expect for some disparate visions to form the bulk of these ideas. Maybe I’m just being the cynical guy here thinking that all these near-legendary guys should be coming together for something a little more reputable than The Amazing Spider-Man 2. But if nothing else, it’ll be a more interesting sound than Zimmer’s work on The Dark Knight Rises.
Catch The Amazing Spider-Man 2 when it hits theaters on May 2, 2014.