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The Los Angeles Times recounts a post-screening conference in April involving Pixar's top brass and composer Michael Giacchino (note: may contain spoilers):

[J]ust a few days before that April screening at George Lucas' bucolic Skywalker Ranch, the Cannes Film Festival had selected "Up" to launch this week's prestigious festival, a first for an animated film.

If producer Jonas Rivera and writer-director Pete Docter, two of Pixar's earliest employees, were sweating bullets when they introduced "Up" to their Pixar colleagues, they didn't show it. "This is the first time that we've got everything together," Rivera said. Added Docter just before the house lights dimmed: "Thank you guys for making the movie."

Despite all the end-of-the-journey gratitude, "Up," which premieres in Cannes on Wednesday and arrives in theaters May 29, wasn't quite finished.

As soon as the screening ended, Docter, Rivera, composer Michael Giacchino, executive producer John Lasseter and a dozen members of Pixar's brain trust met over lunch in a Skywalker conference room to discuss what they had just seen. By the time the team finished dessert, they had decided "Up" needed a new piece of music, and the choice they made with Giacchino revealed much about the film's creative ambitions.

As "Up's" poster and trailer make clear, the film's central image is a house, tethered to thousands of balloons, soaring into the sky. When septuagenarian Carl Fredricksen's ( Ed Asner) residence took flight at the Skywalker screening, Giacchino's score was big and dramatic, the kind of music that typically accompanies an action sequence.

"What we had I think works," said Docter. "But I didn't feel like we were quite capturing it." Specifically, the music wasn't magical, poetic. The house's taking off needed to play more like a mystical metaphor -- Fredricksen's trying somehow to join his late wife, Ellie, in the heavens -- and less like a prison break.

"There's something about the lyricism of the floating house that appealed to me from Day One," said Docter, a tall man whose 10-year-old daughter, Elizabeth, provided young Ellie's voice. With a new piece of music, the scene played closer to how he always imagined it should. "Now, it's almost like he's waltzing with Ellie as the house takes off."

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I'm looking very much forward to this movie; and the score too.

Now if only it were to be released earlier in The Netherlands; again we have to wait many months until a time where I might not even be in a position anymore to go and see it.

Same story as with Wall-E basically; I never managed to see that in Cinema either because I wasn't anywhere near a cinema that showed it. :)

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It looks good to me, looking forward to seeing it. In my mind Pixar can practically do no wrong, even Cars, their weakest effort yet, is still pretty charming.

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I agree, it doesn't do anything for me either. Will it be Pixar's first flop?

I don't think it will flop. The film premiered yesterday at the Cannes Film Festival and received glowing reviews from almost everyone. Pixar is being very bold and daunting (i.e.: a 70+ year old man as the main character in an animated movie), but as the previous films demonstrated, audiences will warm to the story and characters if they're good enough.

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Pixar's always been bold. Wall-E was always going to be a risk - little dialogue and a rather dark message.

If Dreamworks was making Up, they'd be basing their entire marketing campaign on whatever A-lister was playing the old man. Pixar are selling the idea, and they're good at that.

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If Dreamworks was making Up, they'd be basing their entire marketing campaign on whatever A-lister was playing the old man. Pixar are selling the idea, and they're good at that.

They would also, rather than come up with a creative ending, finish the film with the main characters singing karaoke to a vintage pop song. ("Up Where We Belong", perhaps?)

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So far the early critic reviews seem to be positive and praise Giacchino's music, even the one negative review gives props to the music.

It's an interesting score. I posted a link for samples in the Giacchino thread. I need to listen to it in full, but the classical jazz sound doesn't really appeal to me. The action cues are pure Giacchino though.

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So far the early critic reviews seem to be positive and praise Giacchino's music, even the one negative review gives props to the music.

They were also keen on The Incredibles and Ratatouille. Film critics tend to be more favorably disposed toward jazz-inflected scores in general (hence the uncharacteristically positive response Williams received with Catch Me If You Can). As for me, the clips are about what I would expect from a Giacchino Pixar score -- thematically strong and teeming with action cues that are alternately infectious and overbearing.

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That sucks, let's hope it doesn't happen too often as there are no digital music stores in Mexico, I can't buy from iTunes, Amazon or any of the other legal ones.

There are loads of other online places to buy all the same music - Play.com, 7Digital to name two. Don't get duped into thinking Itunes and Amazon own it all.

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That sucks, let's hope it doesn't happen too often as there are no digital music stores in Mexico, I can't buy from iTunes, Amazon or any of the other legal ones.

There are loads of other online places to buy all the same music - Play.com, 7Digital to name two. Don't get duped into thinking Itunes and Amazon own it all.

7Digital doesn't sell to Mexico either or Rhapsody, haven't checked Play.com but wouldn't be surprised if it didn't either.

Edit: I just checked Play.com

I live outside the UK, can I buy from PlayDigital?

At present, we are only able to offer PlayDigital music for purchase to customers with a UK billing address.

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The odd thing is that the MP3 Download page on Amazon.com has an "also available on CD" link, which goes to a gospel CD that happens to have the word "up" in its title. Could it be that there is supposed to be a CD but for whatever reason they don't have the page ready and someone accidentally put it to the wrong page? I dunno. I may be grasping for straws, but it would be really lame for this score to only have a digital release, and any hope of possibility is enticing to me right now.

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Ending weeks of speculation, a Disney spokesperson just confirmed that the soundtrack to Pixar's Up will be released by Walt Disney Records only as a digital download. No compact disc (CD) version will be sold.

link

and the teaser for Toy Story 3 will be attached to Up

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7Digital doesn't sell to Mexico either or Rhapsody, haven't checked Play.com but wouldn't be surprised if it didn't either.

The irony is that all these restrictions will only result in even more piracy.

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7Digital doesn't sell to Mexico either or Rhapsody, haven't checked Play.com but wouldn't be surprised if it didn't either.

The irony is that all these restrictions will only result in even more piracy.

For sure. With local stores not selling but a few "songs soundtracks" like the twilight one and with all the digital stores unable to sell to Mexico I often joke that this country pushes you to piracy. It's sad, there's quite a lot of stuff I'd like to buy from iTunes (like John Barry's The Black Hole) but can't. I want the music and I'm sure Steve Jobs wants the money, it's a shame.

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I'm not happy about this but at least we're getting the music.

yeah that is my position too.

But if you think it, its disney and a pixar movie, lots of money. It would make more sense if this happened with more obscure or less popular movies' scores.

I mean it was a given that we would get a score release for UP. ITs not like it was a score from an independent movie that we did knew of a score would surface.

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But if you think it, its disney and a pixar movie, lots of money. It would make more sense if this happened with more obscure or less popular movies' scores.

I mean it was a given that we would get a score release for UP. ITs not like it was a score from an independent movie that we did knew of a score would surface.

It's paving the way to make digital downloads a standard in film music. In movies, the biggest always have to do it first.

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Does anyone think they could help me out with the soundtrack? I really want to hear it, but it won't be available in Australia until September (!). I'm open to suggestions.

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Does anyone think they could help me out with the soundtrack?

I'm not sure what you mean by "help me out", but I'm an Australian living in Korea and I feel your pain.

Money was invented thousands of years ago to enable people to acquire goods... it worked fine until MP3s were released in only a few countries.

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From what little I've heard of the samples, I'd buy it without seeing the movie, but I'm hoping that if I wait until I see the movie, they may decide to put out a CD release and I'll know about it before I waste ten dollars on a digital release. I can hope.

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