Hans Zimmer on The Dark Knight Rises and Man of Steel Scores

Hans Zimmer and Christopher Nolan make beautiful music together, literally. Zimmer's scores for Batman Begins and The Dark Knight (which he co-composed with James Newton Howard) perfectly matched Nolan's moody new take on the Caped Crusader. Likewise, Zimmer's extraordinary score for Nolan's Inception not only added to the film thematically, but also provided aural cues for deciphering the film's labyrinthine plot.

Clearly, the two have an excellent working relationship, so it's no surprise to learn that Zimmer is meeting with Nolan next week about scoring Batman 3. Now that we know Christopher Nolan's third Batman film will be called The Dark Knight Rises, should fans expect to hear an uplifting score?

In an interview with NBC San Diego's PopcornBiz blog, Zimmer said he and Nolan "start early" on film scores and that Nolan is already "puttering around with ideas." Zimmer went on to describe why he enjoys working with Nolan and the kind of environment the director provides for composers.

"Working with Chris, he gives me all the freedom in the world and encourages me to go and be daring and unusual and crazy and all those sorts of things and be able to be the sort of emotional center of the film. It's very give and take. I'll start long before he starts shooting. Our conversations start there and it goes both ways: we just have conversations about the movie and less about what the music has to do, and it really comes out of that, whereby I felt that there was a real emotional core to be had and that that was something that the music had to do and I hung on that for dear life."

While Zimmer hasn't officially signed on to score The Dark Knight Rises, it seems like something of a foregone conclusion given the pair's strong working relationship. Personally, I am very excited to see the direction that they decide to go with the score for this third movie. I'm one of those people that listens to film scores instead of the radio, and few recent film scores have earned quite as much play time on my iTunes as The Dark Knight score.

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Besides The Dark Knight Rises, Zimmer may also be working with Nolan again on Zack Snyder's Superman: Man of Steel. Recently, I re-watched Richard Donner's original Superman film and was struck by how timeless John Williams' excellent score is. If he does end up scoring Man of Steel, will Zimmer be tempted to mirror the classic Williams score for the new film?

Zimmer told NBC San Diego that "it's a hard one," but "ultimately you're supposed to reinvent.”

"It's a hard one, but I followed one of the most iconic things on 'Batman' with Chris as well, and it's the same thing. You are allowed to reinvent, but you have to try to be as good or at least as iconic and it has to resonate and it has to become a part of the zeitgeist. That's the job. On 'Gladiator' I remember people always talking about 'Spartacus' and I kept telling them, 'When you saw "Spartacus" and how it affected it you, that's how I want a modern audience to be affected by what we do now.'"

I would agree that "reinvention" is the right choice, especially because this film is intended to stand alone completely from previous iterations of Superman on screen. As iconic as John Williams' score is, Man of Steel is a new film and deserves a fresh approach.

With the third Batman film finally getting a name, and multiple rumors coming out about the Superman movie (including plans to have a middle-aged Man of Steel), I can't help but get excited about these movies and DC's potential resurgence on the big screen. I only hope that Green Lantern does a good job in leading the way for these other films.

Source: NBC San Diego

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