Legendary composer John Williams is on the verge of setting another Oscars record should he be nominated for Star Wars: The Last Jedi, The Post or both. Williams is easily one of the most prolific film composers in the modern era, having written music for more than 100 films (and dozens of television shows) over his 60-year career. And while his music can instantly be associated with dozens of classic films, perhaps none is more recognizable than his work on the Star Wars film saga. The “Star Wars Theme” is easily among the first things that pops into fans’ minds when they think of the space opera created by George Lucas, along with each film’s accompanying opening scroll.
Even though he’s turning 86-years-old next month, Williams is still very much in the composing game, with the scores of two feature films to his credit this year and more on the way with commitments to do one of the themes for Solo: A Star Wars Story this year (John Powell will compose the rest) and compose the score for Star Wars: Episode IX, which is set for release in 2019. But before he puts his quill to paper and conductor’s baton in the air once again, he very well may consider pulling his tux out of the closet for a trip to the 90th annual Academy Awards in March.
According to Variety, Williams is on target to set a new record for Oscar nominations come January 22, where he could potentially best his own Academy record. That’s because Williams’ music for director Rian Johnson’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi and frequent collaborator Steven Spielberg’s The Post are both in the running for Best Original Score nominations, which could make his current record that much more untouchable. Sitting currently with 50 lifetime Oscar nods, a nomination for one or both of the films would create a new record for Williams as the most-nominated living individual. The only person to ever have achieved more was Walt Disney, who earned 59 Oscar nominations in his lifetime.
To date, Williams has won five Oscars total with statuettes for Best Music, Scoring Adaptation and Original Song Score (a category that no longer exists) for 1971’s Fiddler on the Roof. He also won Best Original Score Oscars for Jaws (1975), the original Star Wars (1977), E.T. the Extraterrestrial (1982) and Schindler’s List (1993). Amazingly, Williams has gone the last 24 years without another Oscar win, though he’s been nominated 19 times in that time frame.
Nominations for The Last Jedi and/or The Post would certainly be fitting for Williams, since both films have close ties to his illustrious Oscar history. Of the first seven Star Wars films he’s composed, Williams has been nominated for Best Original Score for four of them, and The Last Jedi would be his fifth. If his score for The Post gets nominated, it will be the 17th time a Spielberg film has earned him the distinct honor.
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