When I attended “Pixar In Concert” at Lincoln Center in NY a few weeks back, I was struck by how many memorable scores there are in the Pixar film catalog. The score that played just before intermission, arguably the most stunning piece of music in any Pixar film, was that from Pete Docter’s Up, the film that only needs mentioning to induce tears. The score went on to win an Oscar for composer Michael Giacchino, and has developed a life of its own. Docter and Giacchino are now reuniting once more, for Inside Out, which is due out next year!
Pixar has worked with a select few composers on its feature films, all of who are incredibly talented. Randy Newman’s Toy Story score is instantly recognizable, Thomas Newman’s WALL-E score soars, and Michael Giacchino‘s work on Up is simply breathtaking. Giacchino, who has also gone on to become a huge talent in the world of live-action films, has also contributed music to Pixar shorts, including La Luna (2011) and Day & Night (2010). We have now learned that he was tapped by the animation studio to pen the score for its first TV special, Toy Story of Terror!
The animation, characters, and script may get a lot of the glory in Pixar films, but it would be a mistake to overlook the role that the music plays. A prime example would be the opening sequence in Up, which took a somber turn right after we fell in love with the characters – it broke our hearts, but combine that with Michael Giacchino‘s superb score, and we were left devastated. Composer Thomas Newman has collaborated with director Andrew Stanton twice before, is reportedly working on next year’s The Good Dinosaur, and we have just learned that he will likely return for Finding Dory. Find more details after the break!
If you go down the list of Pixar films, many stick out as having memorable scores, including the Toy Story trilogy, WALL-E, and, of course, The Incredibles. The studio has released 13 feature films, but only four composers are responsible for them – Randy Newman, Michael Giacchino, Thomas Newman, and Patrick Doyle. Clearly, Pixar has developed close relationships with the composers. Newman is now returning to collaborate with Pixar once more, on next year’s film, The Good Dinosaur.
Pixar films are often praised for their soundtracks in addition to their stories and characters. While we have access to soundtracks for the feature films, it is rare for the music from a Pixar short to be distributed outside of the studio. That changes with the latest Toy Story Toon, PartySaurus Rex, for which Grammy award-winning artist BT contributed the catchy tub-thumping music. Today, Disney and Pixar made the track available for download!
Two weeks ago, I came across a blog named Rainy City Tales 332 that seemed to be virally marketing a brand new Pixar short. I found various clues scattered throughout the blog, such as a Pizza Planet reference and a supposed hint at Monsters University. While there was strong evidence that Rainy City Tales was throwing us hints about the next Pixar short, a new article from The Playlist seems to solidify the blog’s nature even further, confirming that the short film will revolve around an umbrella and will be scored by great composer Jon Brion. [Read more…]
Pixar has an attachment to the composers that it works with, only hiring three to work on its eleven released feature films. However, director Mark Andrews and his team wanted something different for Brave, which is why the Scotland-born Patrick Doyle (Composer for Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Thor) was given the job. Doyle, Scottish Gaelic singer Julie Fowlis, British folk rock group Mumford & Sons, singer Birdy and Pixar’s own songwriter Alex Mandel contributed to a soundtrack which houses three original songs. Find some images and more details after the break! [Read more…]