Chalk up another question about Terminator Salvation as answered, as Danny Elfman has revealed he will be composing the score for the much anticipated blockbuster sequel/reboot. Speaking at the red carpet of the People’s Choice Awards, Elfman said that he’s “just started” on it, which is fine since it’s still 5 months away from its release.
An interesting item of note Elfman revealed is that Brad Fiedel’s original score for Terminator 2: Judgement Day, with that iconic sound hook (the one that was used to great effect in the first teaser trailer), is up in the air whether or not it will be used within the actual film:
I think if it comes up and it seems appropriate, we will [use it]. And if it doesn’t, we [won’t]. I never really know what to expect when I begin other than I just kind of get into and have fun. Especially a movie like “T4” – just have fun. So that’s what I intend to do.
I’m kind of torn on this one – on the one hand I like Elfman as a composer, always have (even if he’s not as good as he used to be). But on the other hand his usual style, the one that he’s identified with, doesn’t really suit what I think Terminator Salvation should be. He works with Tim Burton a lot, on such films as Batman, Batman Returns, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Big Fish, on and on, and his music, although somewhat dark, always has this fluttery, almost magical sound to it – a sound I, again, don’t see fitting right with what this new Terminator film should be.
Comic-book fans should note Elfman did the score for all three Spider-Man movies and although certainly not outright bad, I still don’t think he did the absolute best job with it either. It wasn’t memorable, in fact I strain to even recall it, and that’s something a score should never be.
Looking at his body of work it seems he really only does great things when working with Burton.
The score needs to embody what’s happening on-screen, it needs to accompany it and yet build upon it at the same time. And for Terminator Salvation the score then needs to be loud, powerful and one which leaves it’s mark (although ideally not taking precedent over what’s happening on-screen). Someone like Howard Shore (who did all the music for Lord of the Rings, and also did Se7en, The Fly and Scanners, amongst others) would be a better fit. His style is frequently very dark, grungy, and brooding – well suited for this new Terminator instalment.
So is Danny Elfman the right pick to compose the score for the film – or do you think someone else would’ve been a better choice?
Terminator Salvation hits theatres on May 22nd this year.