Film.Music.Media: Podcast
Christopher Willis (Composer: The Death Of Stalin)

Christopher Willis (Composer: The Death Of Stalin)

January 2, 2019

Christopher Willis got his start working for composers like Rupert Gregson-Williams, Harry Gregson-Williams, and Henry Jackman. His talents as a storyteller can be heard in his scores for series like Veep (co-composed with Rupert Gregson-Williams), The Lion Guard and Mickey Mouse. His score for The Death Of Stalin gained critical praise along with the amazing film, which reunites Chris with Veep creator Armando Iannucci who co-wrote and directed the film. In this interview, Chris shares his path to becoming a composer including working with Rupert Gregson-Williams. We chat about the relationship Chris built with Armando Iannucci on Veep, and what that show needed musically. Chris then dives in and dissects his brilliant score to The Death Of Stalin and how he approached the music. Chris is an amazing talent and has demonstrated his wonderfully unique voice as a composer very early-on in his career.

Interview Produced & Presented By: Kaya Savas

Special Thanks: Christopher Willis, Andrew Cohen, Impact24 PR

All Access: Henry Jackman - Episode 2 (Ralph Breaks The Internet, The Predator)

All Access: Henry Jackman - Episode 2 (Ralph Breaks The Internet, The Predator)

December 23, 2018

[Watch the video interview on our YouTube Channel]

Henry Jackman's versatility has always been one of his strongest assets as a storyteller. Henry has given us amazing scores across a variety of genres, and his ability to shift gears drastically from project to project is nothing short of impressive. On our last All Access with Henry we covered a lot of ground. This time we still do plenty of ground covering, but with more focus on recent projects such as Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle, The Predator and Ralph Breaks The Internet. Henry reminds of his amazing path to becoming a composer including working with Hans Zimmer and what he remembers from his first solo score with Monsters vs. Aliens. Henry also talks about the phone call he had with Alan Silvestri about scoring The Predator, which happens to be one of Henry’s favorite scores and the reason why he fell in love with film music. Other topics include what characteristics a great director needs to have, tackling different genres, the recipe for doing sequels, and Henry talks briefly of what we can expect from his work in 2019. Henry helps us close out 2018 with another wonderful All Access!

Interview Produced & Presented by Kaya Savas

Special Thanks: Henry Jackman, Matt Justmann, Allison Swift

Composer Interview: Rolfe Kent

Composer Interview: Rolfe Kent

December 7, 2018

Composer Rolfe Kent has continually demonstrated his versatility as a storyteller by bringing us such wonderful scores across every genre. He has built lasting relationships with directors like Alexander Payne and Jason Reitman. He has also given scores such as Up In The Air, Sideways, Legally Blonde, Wedding Crashers, About Schmidt and many more. Rolfe recently scored the Laurel and Hardy biopic titled Stan & Ollie. In this interview we talk a little about Rolfe's path to becoming a composer, and then dissect his work on Stan & Ollie. The film has a really deep emotional core, and Rolfe was able to build these iconic characters up musically and give the film the emotional resonance it needed. It was such a pleasure to welcome Rolfe back as a guest on Film.Music.Media!

Interview Produced & Presented by Kaya Savas

Special Thanks: Rolfe Kent, Sabrina Hutchinson, Defiant PR

All Access: Carter Burwell (The Ballad Of Buster Scruggs)

All Access: Carter Burwell (The Ballad Of Buster Scruggs)

November 12, 2018

[Watch the video interview on our YouTube Channel]

Carter Burwell is a true auteur of his craft, and one of the most respected and cherished composers working in the industry. While he’s mostly known for his work with The Coen Brothers, his entire filmography is filled with treasures. For this All Access we sit down and discuss Carter's unique path to becoming a composer, including how he met The Coen Brothers to score Blood Simple and kickoff an unexpected career as a composer.

We walk through some of Carter's most memorable Coen brothers scores including Blood Simple, Raising Arizona, Miller's Crossing, Fargo, True Grit, No Country For Old Men and their recent collaboration on The Ballad Of Buster Scruggs. Carter shares stories such as how he had to write some score for Inside Llewyn Davis just to convince the Coens they didn’t want score. Outside of Carter's work with the Coens, we look at his work with Martin McDonagh and Spike Jonze. Hear Carter breakdown his music in films like In Bruges, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri, Being John Malkovich and Where The Wild Things Are.

Some other discussion points include why Carter decides to live in New York vs Los Angeles, where the first note comes from, the new trend of movies coming directly to Netflix, working on bigger budget studio films, and his views on where the industry stands today.

Carter's brilliant insight and warm personality are a true delight, and you won't find a more incredible view on the craft of film scoring than through Carter Burwell. It was an absolute joy and honor to have him as a guest on this All Access.

Interview Produced & Presented By Kaya Savas

Special Thanks: Carter Burwell, Jeff Sanderson, Chasen PR

All Access: Tony Morales (Elena of Avalor / An Actor Prepares)

All Access: Tony Morales (Elena of Avalor / An Actor Prepares)

October 25, 2018

[Watch the video interview on our YouTube Channel]

EMMY-nominated composer Tony Morales joins us for a new All Access. Tony got his big break by having a chance meeting with Harry Gregson-Williams in a pizza shop, this led to commercial work and eventually session musician work along with being an additional arranger and orchestrator for Brian Tyler.

We discuss how Tony's career grew once he got some early experience, and how he developed his sound as a composer on his solo projects. We also dive into many of Tony's projects such as his scores for Bloodline, Hatfields & McCoys, Scorpion, Elena of Avalor and An Actor Prepares.

Tony breaks down the process of scoring TV animation with Disney's Elena of Avalor, and how even with children's animation there is change in how much music is needed and how it acts as a narrative device. We also discuss the new film An Actor Prepares, starring Jeremy Irons and Jack Huston. Tony breaks down character scoring and dealing with tone in comedy.

Some other topics we discuss is how to find confidence in your voice as a storyteller as well as how to deal with rejection, whether that's being replaced on a project or having a cue rejected.

Tony Morales is such a great talent and voice who has quickly established himself as a versatile and in-demand storyteller. It was great having him as a guest on All Access!

Interview Produced & Presented by Kaya Savas

Special Thanks: Tony Morales, Sabrina Hutchinson, Javier Garcia, Defiant PR, The Krakower Group

Composer Interview: Gabriele Ciampi (Hybrid)

Composer Interview: Gabriele Ciampi (Hybrid)

October 25, 2018

Gabriele Ciampi is a classically trained composer who has blended more modern sensibilities into his work. But even with all the modern technologies at a composer's disposal, he still insists on starting with a pencil and paper.

Gabriele studied composition at the prestigious St. Cecilia Music Conservatory. He also attended the Film Scoring Certificate Program at UCLA where he studied composition and orchestration.

He has written and directed the music for the performance of “A Christmas Carol” in 2012 in Moscow (in cooperation with the Moscow Chamber Orchestra) and in 2013 at the Parco della Musica Auditorium in Rome, where he was awarded the Italian Excellence Medal by the Senate of the Republic of Italy.

In 2014 he released an album titled “The Minimalist Evolution”, which was then performed in concert in Los Angeles and Rome.

Gabriele also had the distinct pleasure of being personally requested by Michele Obama to be a performer during the annual Holiday Open Houses at The White House.

For this interview we talk about Gabriele's journey to becoming a renowned concert composer as well as his work in film composition. Gabriele also discusses his new album "Hybrid", which sees the composer really meshing his classical sensibilities with modern stylings.

Interview Produced & Presented by Kaya Savas

Special Thanks: Gabriele Ciampi, Bobbi Marcus, Bobbi Marcus PR

All Access: Daniel Hart (The Old Man & The Gun)

All Access: Daniel Hart (The Old Man & The Gun)

September 28, 2018

[Watch the video interview on our YouTube Channel]

Daniel Hart may be a relative newcomer to the world of visual media scoring, but he has already established himself as one of the best auteur composers working today. His collaborations with director David Lowery have been extremely notable, and so has his projects with other directors and producers. Daniel is behind the scores to Ain't Them Bodies Saints, A Ghost Story, Pete's Dragon, The Exorcist (TV Series) and many others. We also dissect Daniel's two newest projects. The first is Lowery's latest film The Old Man & The Gun starring Robert Redford and Sissy Spacek. The second is the excellent Forever on Prime Video starring Maya Rudolph and Fred Armisen.

On this All Access Daniel talks about his extremely unique path to becoming a composer, and how he still feels like an outsider in this industry from time to time. Daniel talks about his band Dark Rooms, and how it exercises a completely different part of his brain when he's songwriting or going on tour. One of the most interesting things we discuss is how Daniel got the job to score Disney's live-action Pete's Dragon. Daniel talks about how he was initially passed on by Disney for Howard Shore, but that creative differences ended up letting Lowery fight for Daniel and to let Disney give him another shot. Hear how Daniel learned from his mistakes to secure the job, and score his first big studio feature.

Daniel Hart's unique sound palette and intimate way of storytelling makes his scores resonate on a completely unique emotional level. He is such a fresh and talented voice in this industry and it was a pleasure to finally have him as a guest on All Access.

Interview Produced & Presented By: Kaya Savas

Special Thanks: Daniel Hart

Director/Composer Interview: John Carpenter (Halloween)

Director/Composer Interview: John Carpenter (Halloween)

September 22, 2018

Composer, producer, writer and director John Carpenter is regarded as one of the most influential auteur filmmakers in all of cinema. He has been behind some of the most iconic films in the horror and sci-fi genre such as Assault On Precinct 13, Halloween, Christine, The Fog, Escape From New York, The Thing, Big Trouble in Little China and many more. What sets John apart from most other writers and directors is that he is also the composer on his films. His music has become as iconic as the images he has brought to life onscreen. John makes his long-awaited return to the Halloween franchise that he gave birth to in 1978 by coming onboard to score and executive produce David Gordon Green's Halloween sequel. Green's film is ignoring all the sequels and picking the story up 40 years after the events of the original film. We had a small window to chat with John about his career in the industry, dating back to what made him fall in love with cinema in the first place. We touch on several subjects such as coming up with a story and what makes a great horror film. Hear stories such as what inspired the Michael Myers character, the true story of how John worked with Ennio Morricone on the The Thing, working with Alan Howarth, the difficulties of production across his films, when he starts the composing process on his films, and how he collaborated with Cody Carpenter and Daniel Davies to co-score the newest chapter in the Halloween franchise. It was such an honor to have this brief and engaging chat with one of the greatest storytellers of cinema.

Interview Produced & Presented By: Kaya Savas

Special Thanks: John Carpenter, Storm King Productions

Composer Interview: Terence Blanchard (BlacKkKlansman)

Composer Interview: Terence Blanchard (BlacKkKlansman)

August 23, 2018

Terence Blanchard is a renowned jazz musician and composer who has paved his own unique path as a musical storyteller. Terence and director Spike Lee have one of the most prolific composer/director relationships in the industry, and their latest project is the critically-acclaimed BlacKkKlansman. Terence joins us for a great chat about his childhood in New Orleans, and how he grew up into the New Orleans jazz scene. We talk about how he found his path to becoming a film composer, and the first time he met Spike Lee. We also dissect the score to BlacKkKlansman among a few other notable scores from Terence's filmography. Terence also discusses topics such as finding inspiration, overcoming doubt to find confidence, and his music outside of film including his journey in writing an opera. Terence is such an amazing talent and voice in this industry, and it was a pleasure to have him as a guest for this chat.

Interview Produced & Presented By: Kaya Savas

Special Thanks: Terence Blanchard, Alisse Kingsley, Muse Media

All Access: Brian Tyler - Episode 3 (Crazy Rich Asians / Yellowstone)

All Access: Brian Tyler - Episode 3 (Crazy Rich Asians / Yellowstone)

August 15, 2018

[Watch the video interview on our YouTube Channel]

Brian Tyler sits down for his third All Access interview here on Film.Music.Media. We revisit Brian's path to becoming a film composer including how both his undergraduate and master's degree had nothing to do with music despite his childhood and adolescent years being filled with music. We dive in and examine Brian's approach to Crazy Rich Asians and reuniting with director Jon M. Chu. Hear how Brian and Jon came to the conclusion that this score needed to feel like a throwback to the 1940's but also have an organic emotional undercurrent. We also examine Brian's score to Taylor Sheridan's Yellowstone, a new series starring Kevin Costner. Brian talks about scoring a modern western and how he didn't want to go the route of either Americana or spaghetti western. Finally we talk about Brian's work for Formula 1 racing and how he brought drama and emotion to one of his favorite sports. Other topics include how to manage confidence vs self-doubt, how director Jon Chu calmed Brian's hesitations for scoring Crazy Rich Asians being a white man, and how Brian deals with criticism online and via social media. It was extremely fun and inspirational to have Brian back as a guest on Film.Music.Media All Access.

Interview Produced & Presented By: Kaya Savas

Special Thanks: Brian Tyler, Stephanie Bryant, Jeff Sanderson, Chasen & Company