Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Edmilson

The mystery of the Quidditch scene on Chamber of Secrets - Here's my theory!

Recommended Posts

56 minutes ago, crumbs said:

I actually prefer the COS rendition of the Zam music anyway. Ross conducted the hell out of it. It makes the AOTC version feel restrained by comparison. 

Hell yeah!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Edmilson said:

Chamber of Secrets is probably the most controversial Williams score of this century. For years, the mystery remains:

I thought we cleared this up years ago.  Ross composed and conducted the score using his new themes and Williams's old themes.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Option 1: Williams writes some new music, fucks off and lets Ross do the rest.

Option 2: Williams writes some new music, gives guidelines for all other cues, which themes or previously written cues they should build on, which Ross then proceeds to write, fill out with new connective material.

Option 3: Williams writes most music and sketches out parts which are heavy on reusing earlier Stone material, Ross fleshes these out.

Option 4: Williams writes everything as he would with a normal score, Ross gets a bigger credit than he should because Williams is too humble and when the project was started it wasn't yet clear how big Ross's involvement would be.

 

I think these are pretty much the only 4 options, obviously some are less likely than others. We have NEVER gotten a straight answer telling us which one was the case.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In the end does it even matter much if you enjoy the music? I am curious up to a point about the music making process but in the case of Chamber of Secrets they clearly don't want to go too deeply into it as it was not an ideal situation for Williams who was in a hurry because he scored four films that year and had to start on Catch Me If You Can.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't think the Quidditch match music is a mystery, nor is any other part of this score.

 

John Williams wrote as much music as he could before he had to leave to work on Catch Me If You Can, and William Ross adapted JW compositions (from HP1, HP2, AOTC, JP, Hook, etc) to fill in all the cues JW never had time to write himself.  

 

No more complicated than that!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, Jay said:

I don't think the Quidditch match music is a mystery, nor is any other part of this score.

 

John Williams wrote as much music as he could before he had to leave to work on Catch Me If You Can, and William Ross adapted JW compositions (from HP1, HP2, AOTC, JP, Hook, etc) to fill in all the cues JW never had time to write himself.  

 

No more complicated than that!

Quite.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, Holko said:

 Option 3: Williams writes most music and sketches out parts which are heavy on reusing earlier Stone material, Ross fleshes these out.

 

 

I think (and theorize) that option 3 is the most likely, although I'm not so sure on how much influence did Williams had on choosing which cues from HPPS would be rerecorded for Chamber. Did he called Ross and said "Bill, baby, don't you think that a rendition of the 3 note loop would be great for the scene that McGonagall tells the children the history of the Chamber?"? Or did he focused on the stuff he actually wrote, and then let Ross, Columbus and music editors decided which cues from the first movie would be reused?

4 minutes ago, Jay said:

William Ross adapted JW compositions (from HP1, HP2, AOTC, JP, Hook, etc)

 

That is exactly the point of my thread. I agree that Ross adapted music from the first two Potters to fit the movie, but I'm not so sure if he did the same with other Williams scores. 

 

I don't think he came up with the idea to adapt Attack of The Clones music for the quidditch scene. As I said, the Zam references on Chasing the Snitch are on 44 seconds of a 123 sec cue. So, by that logic, the other 79 seconds were an original composition by Ross.

 

My theory is that Chasing the Snitch is a cue written by Williams to amplify the impact of the setpiece, that had a lift from an earlier composition - which is not unheard of on JW's career. 

 

Anyway, that's just a theory. We won't know for sure until Williams or Ross confirms it or denies it. Until Ross says something like "Yeah, JW was out of time, so we just decided to reuse stuff from Attack of the Clones for the quidditch scene", I'm not buying it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Jay said:

I don't think the Quidditch match music is a mystery, nor is any other part of this score.

 

John Williams wrote as much music as he could before he had to leave to work on Catch Me If You Can, and William Ross adapted JW compositions (from HP1, HP2, AOTC, JP, Hook, etc) to fill in all the cues JW never had time to write himself.  

 

No more complicated than that!

 

I wouldn’t say it is that simple for this particular cue: While the music sounds very similar, it just isn’t exactly the same. I actually agree with the idea that Williams just sort of wrote the same music twice. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Edmilson said:

However, to prevent the audience to find the two quidditch scenes very similar, Williams decided (or someone asked him) to score the most exciting and action packed scene of the setpiece: when Harry and Malfoy  go below the stadium, chasing the snitch while our hero is also being chased by the bludger. It's when the stakes are higher: he is on a fierce dispute with his rival to get the snitch and win the match while also having to survive the bludger and dodging the wood structures of the stadium.

One hypothesis I've had of my own is that was added late in the production.

They decided what they did was a bit too similar to the first film, so they threw a trench run in there at the last minute.

 

Would've been easy. Need only two actors instead of a whole bunch.

And the special effects could be limited to an enclosed area instead of a wide open field with audience in the background.

 

I find it extremely unlikely that they planned it like this way in advance.

For starters, it's not in the book; though of course that doesn't say a whole lot.

It doesn't feel very sporty to me even though it's supposed to be a sporting event.

 

It also doesn't make a whole lot of sense.

If you go in it, the sports audience gets to see virtually nothing of what happens.

And why is that trench even there? What is it for?

 

I've like the CoS movie a lot; but this bit always stood out as a sore thumb to me.

Perhaps I'm projecting my own feelings onto the movie makers, but I find it very difficult to believe that the scene became what they had always dreamt of making.

Surely, given more time and money, they could've come up with something better?

And I don't mean for the music; I mean for the movie scene itself.

 

Oh well... I suppose just like with the Williams vs. Ross debate, we will never truly know and it'll all remain conjecture.

That can admittedly be fun. As long as we also realise the futility of it. 😂

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It’s likely that we will never know the exact details of every cue from this score, which is fun in a way. I still can’t believe there are people who feel that Ross wrote all of it, when there are sketches of cues from this movie in John Williams’s own handwriting. And yes, I know the difference between his and that of William Ross.

 

8 hours ago, crumbs said:

I actually prefer the COS rendition of the Zam music anyway. Ross conducted the hell out of it. It makes the AOTC version feel restrained by comparison. 

 

Ross may have conducted the hell out of it, but that’s not the reason it would sound different. The two cues have actually pretty different orchestrations and are in different tonalities. The COS version was meant to sound much bigger than the restrained Zam version. I like the COS version better too!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I prefer the Zam Chase, it keeps the momentum going for longer and allows the percussion to carry it along. The segments within the Quidditch cue are more energetic, but it's surrounded by what I can only describe is high jinks that is flavoured more towards the fun of Harry Potter than to the serious chase in Attack of the Clones. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Montre said:

I still can’t believe there are people who feel that Ross wrote all of it, when there are sketches of cues from this movie in John Williams’s own handwriting.

 

100% agree.

 

If (and that's a big if) Ross wrote anything for this score, it is stuff like 0:16 to 0:23 on 1m7 Escape from The Dursleys, just inconsequential minor music to connect one Williams piece to the other.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I didn't mean to be critical of Ross. Actually, for all we know, he did a wonderful job on this score adapting and conducting, one that prevented us to get a mess like on the SW prequels. It's thanks to him that he took JW's material and turned into a pretty coherent 2h15min score. I was only saying is that I think that, if he actually wrote anything, was just connective tissue between JW's material - and that was crucial to turn cues from the first movie into coherent cues for the second.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Edmilson said:

I didn't mean to be critical of Ross. Actually, for all we know, he did a wonderful job on this score adapting and conducting, one that prevented us to get a mess like on the SW prequels. It's thanks to him that he took JW's material and turned into a pretty coherent 2h15min score.

 

I don't agree with you here. Ross did was he was asked to do, of course, but the result is far from "coherent" in my opinion. Even if they are new recordings (with slight differences), a lot of the "new" music feels like a copy and paste job (a lot of people, myself included, thought that a lot of it was actually tracked, until the recordings leaked). And the fact that there are several tracked cues (including the destruction of the diary, which is the actual climax of the movie) is even more baffling, considering that Ross could've adapted and rerecorded it, at least.

 

And let's not talk about the lack of use of nearly all the new themes (was it so difficult to create a few cues adapting the Chamber of Secrets concert piece instead of reusing the 3NL theme again and again?). 

 

The Quidditch cue that you are discussing is actually a very good example of what the score could've been. IF (as most here believe) it was written by Ross adapting material from SW, it is a cue that has a lot of "original" material, which makes it feel more original (except the parts that are literally lifted from the Chase from Coruscant). Doing something similar with the old cues from PS would've been better than literally copying section after section of the previous score.

Anyway, going back to the original topic, it's hard to guess who wrote that music. As you say, it's not a "copy and paste" job, nor is it original. It feels strange that Williams would actually write just a segment of the Quidditch match. It feels more like Ross used all the Quidditch music available in the previous two cues, and needed something else to copy for the third cue, so he was "inspired" by other Williams material. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, oierem said:

And let's not talk about the lack of use of nearly all the new themes (was it so difficult to create a few cues adapting the Chamber of Secrets concert piece instead of reusing the 3NL theme again and again?). 

 

 

That's a great question. Maybe Ross felt that the 3NL was ready to be used for that scene, while the Chamber theme would have to suffer for a few adaptations to fit, and he didn't felt comfortable doing it? Looking at the score, it seems that he mostly kept unchanged what JW had wrote. Probably this wasn't a lack of time problem - CoS was recorded in Aug and Sept 2002, a couple of months earlier than the movie's premiere.
 

4 hours ago, oierem said:

It feels strange that Williams would actually write just a segment of the Quidditch match. It feels more like Ross used all the Quidditch music available in the previous two cues, and needed something else to copy for the third cue, so he was "inspired" by other Williams material. 

 

I disagree. For me, it's not the most absurd idea that JW would write an original (or "original") score for that sequence on the quidditch scene. As I said on my original post, the only sequence of the quidditch match that is not scored with PS music readapted is the most exciting and action packed sequence of this entire setpiece. Harry has to get the snitch before Draco, escape the bludger and all of that while flying at high speed on the stadium's structures. When the audience hear music that it's not from the first movie, we instantly realize that the staker are higher - like "oh, shit just got real". 

 

Also, if this was Ross just adapting AOTC music, he has to be the greatest Williams impersonator ever, because he took the Zam motif and turned into a somewhat new stuff that mysteriously manages to be a perfect copy of Williams' action music style of the early 2000s. I dunno, I've never heard a solo score of him, so maybe he is.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/25/2019 at 3:34 PM, Edmilson said:

I dunno, I've never heard a solo score of him, so maybe he is.

I know The Tale of Despereaux and The Young Black Stallion. There's some good stuff in there.

Misses Williams' sense for catchy melody, but otherwise sounds well orchestrated to me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/25/2019 at 10:34 PM, Edmilson said:

 

That's a great question. Maybe Ross felt that the 3NL was ready to be used for that scene, while the Chamber theme would have to suffer for a few adaptations to fit, and he didn't felt comfortable doing it? Looking at the score, it seems that he mostly kept unchanged what JW had wrote. Probably this wasn't a lack of time problem - CoS was recorded in Aug and Sept 2002, a couple of months earlier than the movie's premiere.

 

I always thought that Ross started adapting HP1 music as the same time as Williams started composing the new themes, so we had less time for adding those. Maybe the first idea was for Williams and Ross to work separately (I mean: Ross just adapting the score for the first part for some specific scenes and Williams writing new cues for other scenes) and schedule and everything resulted in a different approach.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/27/2019 at 3:19 AM, Pieter_Boelen said:

I know The Tale of Despereaux and The Young Black Stallion. There's some good stuff in there.

Misses Williams' sense for catchy melody, but otherwise sounds well orchestrated to me.

 yeah but it's not good enough to imagine he can mimic Williams music prefectly where nobody else can. Even stuff by Joel Mc Neely and Gordy Haab that mimic Williams don't sound like real Williams

If Williams took the time to write an alternate Car Drive Off it means he composed every new cue

 

And there's ABSOLUTELY NO WAY Ross took the AotC sheet music and composed the Quiddich music based on it on his own

 

CoS is like Home Alone 2 basically

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, King Mark said:

And there's ABSOLUTELY NO WAY Ross took the AotC sheet music and composed the Quiddich music based on it on his own

 

 

Thank you! That is exactly the point I was trying to make, that the non-HP1 music of the CoS Quidditch scene was a composition by Williams, not Ross looking at the AotC sheets, thinking "this seems good!" and writing a piece of music that perfectly mimics Williams action music style of the early 2000s.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, King Mark said:

yeah but it's not good enough to imagine he can mimic Williams music prefectly where nobody else can. Even stuff by Joel Mc Neely and Gordy Haab that mimic Williams don't sound like real Williams

You'll hear no argument from me there.

 

6 hours ago, King Mark said:

If Williams took the time to write an alternate Car Drive Off it means he composed every new cue

Makes sense to me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 10/5/2019 at 3:28 AM, King Mark said:

 yeah but it's not good enough to imagine he can mimic Williams music prefectly where nobody else can. Even stuff by Joel Mc Neely and Gordy Haab that mimic Williams don't sound like real Williams

If Williams took the time to write an alternate Car Drive Off it means he composed every new cue

 

 

 

What's exactly "every new cue"?
 

For example, what about "Prologue Book II"? That would be composed by Ross right? (it's nothing but old cues put together... sort of ).

The Escape From the Dursleys? It's basically material lifted from PS but the coda is certainly original, as far as I know.

Introducing Colins is basically "The Feast Begins" from the first movie, but with a longer intro. Who composed that?

The first, second and fourth sections of the Quidditch music (assuming that the third section, Chasing the Snitch, is indeed pure Williams)

Of course, the ending of "Reunion of Friends"...

And the list goes on and on...

 

For me, certainly, it is not clear at all who composed that kind of cues (cues that are basically copy&paste jobs but which do have small-ish sections of "original" music which acts like a bridge basically.

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, oierem said:

 Introducing Colins is basically "The Feast Begins" from the first movie, but with a longer intro. Who composed that?

 

 

Who composed that? Well, John Williams did it... for Philosopher's Stone. Ross basically took their cues from the first movie and made them fit the second one. 

 

Of course, it would've been cheaper for WB if they simply tracked music from the first movie. But imagine the climax of Attack of the Clones, but prolonged for 2 hours.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, oierem said:

 

Of course, the ending of "Reunion of Friends"...

 there's so many typical JW things going on in there it's one cue in the entire score you shouldn't be confused about .Of course JW extended the ending in a way only he can do it

 

If Ross wrote some of CoS himself it would sound like Superman 2, where you can tell instantly it's not JW in between the themes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Edmilson said:

 

Who composed that? Well, John Williams did it... for Philosopher's Stone. Ross basically took their cues from the first movie and made them fit the second one. 

 

 

That's not what I meant. I'm talking about the opening bars of "Introducing Colin", which are a "new" introduction (NOT present in PS) to a cue liften from PS. So, my question is, who composed that small introduction (that was NOT copied from PS) to a cue that is mostly a copy&paste job?

 

4 hours ago, King Mark said:

 there's so many typical JW things going on in there it's one cue in the entire score you shouldn't be confused about .Of course JW extended the ending in a way only he can do it

 

 

Ok, but what about the other examples I listed above?

Or rather, I'd like to know which cues did Ross compose/copy? (I know you believe that Ross did literally not compose anything, but the consensus seems to be that Ross adapted (= actually write) cues that were literally taken from PS. The thing is, most of those "copied" cues do have some small amount of "new" material, and I'm not entirely sure about who composed it).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't know, maybe he wrote a few transitional notes between HPSS JW material we wouldn't notice anyways. I don't think he extended anything. I think it was discussed Williams added some string  overlays to a HPSS cue so JW made even small modifications himself

 

I think I've said this  before but another example is Dice and Roll in Solo, you can tell immediately when the real JW kicks in at the end. We "suspected" it but we only found out later JW is partly credited for that cue but he has no credit for it on the c.d. or film .For the rest of Solo it's a good example of someone else really adapting JW's music,but here again you can tell easily .

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

William Ross didn’t write anything new for CoS, this has been confirmed multiple times on this forum. Wasn’t it Mike Matessino who said that JW just couldn’t stop writing for it and was sending music over to London as late as the final recording sessions?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
47 minutes ago, Alex said:

William Ross didn’t write anything new for CoS, this has been confirmed multiple times on this forum. Wasn’t it Mike Matessino who said that JW just couldn’t stop writing for it and was sending music over to London as late as the final recording sessions?

 

We know that he didn't write anything "new", but it's a bit unclear what "new" means. I listed a few cues above (and others have mentioned cues like Cornish Pixies and others as well) that are pretty much lifted from PS but do contain a few seconds of original music (sometimes it's nothing substantial, but sometimes it is), and that's my question. Which cues are "new" (=Williams) and which cues are "not new" (=Ross)? Because Ross DID copy/write some of the cues right?

 

I guess I would just love to have a cue by cue list saying who wrote what. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...