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Danny Elfman badmouths Sam Raimi!

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Danny Elfman badmouths Sam Raimi!

Old 09-12-05, 10:58 AM
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Danny Elfman badmouths Sam Raimi!

Pretty interesting. I'm a huge Sam Raimi fan and have never heard anything other than him being a class act.

From chud.com

Today the junket for The Corpse Bride junket was held in Toronto, at the Toronto Film Festival. The junket in general was short on news - Tim Burton is taking a break, Helena Bonham Carter has a few things in the hopper and Johnny Depp is still knee-deep in Captain Jack Sparrow (his mouth was full of gold teeth). But Danny Elfman dropped a surprise on me when I asked him whether Sam Raimi had told him which villains for whom to consider themes. He's not doing Spider-Man 3, he told me. I asked why.

Elfman: Spider-Man 2 was a miserable experience.

Q: Why? Was it too fast or Ė

Elfman: Itís a complicated thing.

Q: Why was it complicated?

Elfman: My connection to Sam got completely severed. As far as Iím concerned, he went to sleep and somebody put a pod next to him and when he awoke, he wasnít the same person Iíve known for a decade.

Q: Will you work with him again?

Elfman: No. He went from right there, number 2 on my list of favorite directors, to the last Ė to the exact opposite of everything I look for in a film experience. Everything I could do on Spider-Man 1 I couldnít do on Spider-Man 2. He got so intensely attached to the temp music, I couldnít even adapt my own music. I couldnít get close enough to me.

Itís the first time Iíve ever walked from a director in twenty years, and hopefully the last time. He became intolerable. Iíve been on some heavy duty films, so to say that it had to be pretty bad. I have been in war zones you wouldnít believe in 55 films. But this is the first time Iíve said, Iíve had it. Itís just not worth it. I would rather go back to waiting tables than to do Spider-Man 2 again.

Strong words from Elfman. There's no word yet on who will be scoring the next Spidey film.
Old 09-12-05, 11:13 AM
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Wow. Interesting.
Old 09-12-05, 11:15 AM
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Eh. Music isn't one of the strong points of either spidey film anyway. For the life of me I can't hum a single "melody" he's composed.
Old 09-12-05, 11:19 AM
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It's not too surprising. I haven't known a lot about Sam Raimi, but I watched all the behind the scenes stuff on the SM2 disc, and quite frankly, I got a very strong vibe of him being a really big dick, or at least very capable of being one at the drop of a hat. So I can kind of see where Elfman is coming from.

Last edited by The_Infidel; 09-12-05 at 01:37 PM.
Old 09-12-05, 11:19 AM
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Good maybe we can get some fresh music on Spidey.. instead of re-hashed BeetlemanBatjuice.
Old 09-12-05, 11:20 AM
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Originally Posted by devilshalo
Planet Of Edward BeetlemanBatjuice's Big Fish Adventure.
Fixed.
Old 09-12-05, 11:27 AM
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ē chud.com ē

Today the junket for The Corpse Bride junket was held in Toronto ...
Wow. Even junkets get their own junkets now.

ē Kal-El ē

Eh. Music isn't one of the strong points of either spidey film anyway. For the life of me I can't hum a single "melody" he's composed.
While I think that's just about the worst standard for a quality score, Elfman has many "hummable" tunes from which to choose. Of course, as others have noted, once you know one, you know many.

As to the topic at hand, sounds like creative differences escalating to public sniping.

das
Old 09-12-05, 11:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Kal-El
Eh. Music isn't one of the strong points of either spidey film anyway. For the life of me I can't hum a single "melody" he's composed.

I couldn't disagree with you more. Having just watched the first Spidey again, i found the score to be the only redeemable thing about the film and decided to sell both DVD versions I have...but very tempted to buy the score soundtrack.

I've loved a great many of Dannys scores, some of which have already been mentioned: Batman, Batman Returns, Dick Tracy, Spiderman, Pee Wee, The Simpsons, Dolores Claiborne, Chicago, The Flash, Beetlejuice...etc etc. Really great composer.
Old 09-12-05, 01:58 PM
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Working as a music editor, I can safely say there is nothing more frustrating that temp-love. I'm working on a movie now where the producers have fallen in love with a piece of music, but they can't have it because it would cost $10-15K to license it. So I've worked for weeks to find the closest possible thing I can, and all they want to hear is the original piece; everything else sounds wrong to them. The most frustrating part is that the music only plays for about 45 seconds, and is ducked under dialogue for most of that time.

I know this can be even more frustrating for a composer who has to basically rip off another composer's work, instead of trying something new and different, and possibly making a cue better than anyone thought it could.

Last edited by FinkPish; 09-12-05 at 02:02 PM.
Old 09-12-05, 01:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Kal-El
Eh. Music isn't one of the strong points of either spidey film anyway. For the life of me I can't hum a single "melody" he's composed.
Ever hear of "The Simpsons"?
Old 09-12-05, 03:13 PM
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That sucks. I've met Raimi before at the L.A. comic convention and he was cool as hell. He took his time signing our Spider Man memorabilias even though the promoter didn't want him to sign. I hope he hasn't changed. He was so damn humble and modest.
Old 09-12-05, 03:38 PM
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Good maybe we can get some fresh music on Spidey
Well, we sure as hell won't get any with Raime sticking his big nose in the film scoring.
Old 09-12-05, 03:50 PM
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Whether or not a melody is "hummable" has got to be the most idiotic criterion to gauge its quality. Many film scores lack a hummable theme, but they create the proper atmosphere and elicit the required emotions from the viewer. Elfman's scores for the Spider-man franchise, while sometimes derivitive, served their films well and I for one will miss him on the third installment.
Old 09-12-05, 04:08 PM
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Originally Posted by RogueScribner
Whether or not a melody is "hummable" has got to be the most idiotic criterion to gauge its quality. Many film scores lack a hummable theme, but they create the proper atmosphere and elicit the required emotions from the viewer. Elfman's scores for the Spider-man franchise, while sometimes derivitive, served their films well and I for one will miss him on the third installment.
actually...i'd have to disagree with you. as someone with hundreds of film scores on cd and lp...i'd be able to hum the theme from any number of them and that is usually when i will pick up the score right after seeing the film.

In this case, I think the original poster is just dead wrong.

Last edited by digitalfreaknyc; 09-12-05 at 04:11 PM.
Old 09-12-05, 04:30 PM
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Originally Posted by nodeerforamonth
Ever hear of "The Simpsons"?
Heard of the show, never seen a single episode. Nor do I care to.

Originally Posted by RogueScribner
Whether or not a melody is "hummable" has got to be the most idiotic criterion to gauge its quality. Many film scores lack a hummable theme, but they create the proper atmosphere and elicit the required emotions from the viewer. Elfman's scores for the Spider-man franchise, while sometimes derivitive, served their films well and I for one will miss him on the third installment.
To each their own. We'll have to agree to disagree. I like music that stays with me not only during, but also after I see the movie. It's better that way when I replay the movie in my head.
Old 09-12-05, 04:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Kal-El

To each their own. We'll have to agree to disagree. I like music that stays with me not only during, but also after I see the movie. It's better that way when I replay the movie in my head.
agreed. Although I find all of his scores immensely memorable, the quality of scores (like the movies they accompany) are VERY forgettable. Even masters like John Williams have gone downhill. Batman Begins was the first soundtrack I had bought in a good long while. Everyone tends to compose music that just accompanies the action onscreen but does very little more. Rhythmically and (more importantly) melodically, they're very uninteresting and really don't stand on their own.
Old 09-12-05, 04:46 PM
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Originally Posted by digitalfreaknyc
Everyone tends to compose music that just accompanies the action onscreen but does very little more. Rhythmically and (more importantly) melodically, they're very uninteresting and really don't stand on their own.
Are film scores meant to stand on their own or are they meant to add resonance to what we see and hear on screen? Film scores are not intended to be independent musical compositions. Yes, many film scores can be listened to outside of their films and be quite entertaining, but I don't think it's a fair criticism to lob at a score that it doesn't work outside the film when its sole purpose was to work inside the film. When I say a film score is bad I mean to say that it added nothing to the film experience and may even have detracted from it. I do not automatically equate a good film score with a cool CD I can play in my car. Sometimes they are. Often they are not.
Old 09-12-05, 04:58 PM
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Originally Posted by RogueScribner
Are film scores meant to stand on their own or are they meant to add resonance to what we see and hear on screen? Film scores are not intended to be independent musical compositions. Yes, many film scores can be listened to outside of their films and be quite entertaining, but I don't think it's a fair criticism to lob at a score that it doesn't work outside the film when its sole purpose was to work inside the film. When I say a film score is bad I mean to say that it added nothing to the film experience and may even have detracted from it. I do not automatically equate a good film score with a cool CD I can play in my car. Sometimes they are. Often they are not.
Well, I think there has been a major movement away from strongly themed scores to ones that are more atmospheric in nature. It's hard to think of very many films in the last few years that have strong, memorable themes. (It doesn't mean the music is bad, it's just a stylistic difference that makes it harder for the music to stand on its own.)
Old 09-12-05, 05:44 PM
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Originally Posted by dhmac
Well, I think there has been a major movement away from strongly themed scores to ones that are more atmospheric in nature. It's hard to think of very many films in the last few years that have strong, memorable themes. (It doesn't mean the music is bad, it's just a stylistic difference that makes it harder for the music to stand on its own.)
Agreed.

I do not automatically equate a good film score with a cool CD I can play in my car. Sometimes they are. Often they are not
Disagree. A good film score is one that I want to rush out and buy as soon as the movie is over. Many times (for me), a score can make or break a movie for me. I have seen movies because I've heard the score and liked it enough that I'd like to see how it fits into a movie. Most times, if I like the movie, I'm guaranteed to like the score. My only exceptions to that rule are probably scores to comedy films (which I'm not big on anyway). I don't know that I own really ANY scores that are for comedys.

I don't assume that everyone will look at movie scores the same way that i do. My love for movie scores goes back as far as my love for movies themselves. But a movie score that merely accentuates what goes on on-screen is mediocre at best and is exactly where movie scores have gone in the last 5-10 years, I'd say. It's generic and uneventful.
Old 09-12-05, 06:16 PM
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I say Elman should quit composing and reform BOINGO for their 10th anniversary split ....

*wishful and foolish thinking*
Old 09-12-05, 06:26 PM
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I do prefer it when superhero movie scores feature a main theme for the title character(if not the villains). I don't think it's a coincidence that my favorite scores in that genre are Superman: The Movie, Batman, and Unbreakable.

Frankly, Danny Elfman's work has been forgettable for a very long time. Not since the early 90's when he did Edward Scissorhands and Batman Returns has he composed anything noteworthy. So I don't mind the prospect of someone else stepping in to score Spider-Man 3.
Old 09-12-05, 08:11 PM
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Originally Posted by digitalfreaknyc
But a movie score that merely accentuates what goes on on-screen is mediocre at best and is exactly where movie scores have gone in the last 5-10 years, I'd say. It's generic and uneventful.
Solid debate going on. I think I have to agree with digital. This is a solid argument above. While I don't need a defining theme, I do like the score to be a "character" itself, not just some music to compliment what is going on in the scene. I want to feel the scene. John Williams used to be a master of this, the last 10 years have been underwhelming for him.

A superhero film begs for a theme. Especially Spider-man. Unfortunately for Elfman, 90% of his work is recycled from his previous work. Of all the movies listed above I can only rememer Batman and PeeWee. The rest are mediocre and merely compliment the film.
Old 09-12-05, 08:22 PM
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I think everybody missed Kal-El's point. He didn't say that Elfman hasn't done a good humable tune before. He said that none of the Spiderman songs are humable. I agree with him. I can't think of a single song from Spiderman 1 or 2 in a moment's notice. I can think of Batman's, Superman's Rocketeer's songs instantly.
Old 09-12-05, 08:41 PM
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I liked the Spider-Man scores and will miss him for the third, if Raimi can't convince him to come back.
Old 09-12-05, 08:46 PM
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Originally Posted by resinrats
I think everybody missed Kal-El's point. He didn't say that Elfman hasn't done a good humable tune before.
Actually...yes he did.

Eh. Music isn't one of the strong points of either spidey film anyway. For the life of me I can't hum a single "melody" he's composed.
He didn't say "...he's composed IN A SPIDEY FILM." He just left it at "composed."

I will say this...i really enjoyed the main title theme for Spiderman but yeah, for the life of me I can't remember the rest. At this point, there are very few scores that can do more than that.

Oh...and I thought of the other score I was in love with..."finding neverland." I bought it as soon as it came out and feel it's one of the best in years. Again, noticed it on my first viewing of the film and it stood out for me as it does stand alone on the soundtrack. Fantastic and a well-deserved Oscar.

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