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The Force Awakens - Complete Score Breakdown & Chronological Order (Film Spoilers Allowed)


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An even earlier, completely different version of 1M5 that was eventually discarded. Kind of interesting to hear Vader's theme all over it.    

Cue names and numbers from the live-to-projection version (usually pretty accurate, though may not reflect revisions, tracking, etc.):   Act I   1M1 Main Title—Starry Night—The Inv

Anonymous tipster has sent in this complete cue list for TFA.  Discuss!         1M1 Main Title   1M1A 1M1A v2 (Longer) 1M1A v3 1M1A (Free Version) Starry Night

1 hour ago, Taikomochi said:

I could imagine this wasn’t intended to a theme for Rey but rather a mysterious stand-alone piece a la Jedi Steps. Hard to imagine this theme working for Rey for more than her mysterious opening.

 

That's what I thought also originally, but I'm pretty sure now that's not the case, as the sheet shows exactly what scene this was written for. I even matched up the cues in the movie so it's a perfect fit. If you listen to a mockup of The Scavenger I posted a bit earlier here, there is an element in there for the dune slide that's nearly the same as in this version. That said, the released theme that we all know of course works much better.

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5 hours ago, Pando said:

 

That's what I thought also originally, but I'm pretty sure now that's not the case, as the sheet shows exactly what scene this was written for. I even matched up the cues in the movie so it's a perfect fit. If you listen to a mockup of The Scavenger I posted a bit earlier here, there is an element in there for the dune slide that's nearly the same as in this version. That said, the released theme that we all know of course works much better.

He never said thus wasn't written for the scene, just that it wasn't Rey's Theme.

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6 minutes ago, The River (Fal) said:

He never said thus wasn't written for the scene, just that it wasn't Rey's Theme.

 

Right, but I find it unlikely that JW would write music for the very first introduction of the main character, and it doesn't have any resemblance of the character's theme.

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2 hours ago, Pando said:

 

Right, but I find it unlikely that JW would write music for the very first introduction of the main character, and it doesn't have any resemblance of the character's theme.


Normally, I’d agree, but it would also be an interesting choice to bookend Rey’s journey with two mysterious, single-use themes, the other being Jedi Steps. I prefer what we got, but I could see that being Williams’ design. It’s not like he’s unused to bafflingly ignoring his own themes.

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5 hours ago, Pando said:

 

Right, but I find it unlikely that JW would write music for the very first introduction of the main character, and it doesn't have any resemblance of the character's theme.

You could try to argue Indiana Jones.

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1 hour ago, The River (Fal) said:

You could try to argue Indiana Jones.

 

Of course, and you are right, since I didn't express clearly enough what I meant earlier. What I was actually alluding to was that it doesn't make sense to write a completely different theme for a main character's introduction, and then not use it later, since that would be kind of confusing. With the early Scavenger piece, there is a pretty clear theme permeating the entire cue. Indy's 1st jungle scene is a bit different, since there is hardly any thematic material there at all; all that's there is just background music for added suspense. At least that's what it looks like to me, but what do I know.

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1 hour ago, BrotherSound said:

It’s hard to know exactly what he had in mind, but it’s worth noting that TFA is a pretty unique John Williams score in that it was his main occupation for a full year, from November 2014 to November 2015. So, he was able to take advantage of having much more time to try multiple different possible themes and approaches to scoring scenes. Even the other sequel scores didn’t have the luxury of quite that much time.
 

This early version of 1M5 The Scavenger is one of the very first things written for the film and dates from early December 2014, but it doesn’t appear the Rey’s Theme we all know appeared until late January 2015. This same theme also shows up briefly in 1M6 Seeing A Mother and Getting Rations, which also predates Rey’s Theme, so it seems it was considered as a theme for the character for at least a month or so.

 

Along the same lines, the Kylo theme didn’t appear until mid-February 2015, a couple months after the First Order theme (first used December 2014), so I wonder if that could explain why it’s so seldom used: perhaps it was going to be the baddie theme for film until he thought of the Kylo motif, and he decided he just liked it better, mostly dropping the earlier theme from then on?

How do you know this? 

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4 hours ago, DrTenma said:

Impressive stuff, @Pando! Would it be too much to ask for you to allow download those two mockups from soundclound?

 

Thank you. Sorry, I don't typically open downloads of the uncompressed 48kHz/24bit master, but there are soundcloud-to-mp3 downloaders available that allow you to rip the track from there if you wish to have an offline copy. https://www.google.com/search?q=soundcloud+to+mp3

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14 hours ago, Pando said:

 

Thank you. Sorry, I don't typically open downloads of the uncompressed 48kHz/24bit master, but there are soundcloud-to-mp3 downloaders available that allow you to rip the track from there if you wish to have an offline copy. https://www.google.com/search?q=soundcloud+to+mp3

 

In understand, no problem. I already knew about those methods but wanted your uncompressed edit. In any case mp3 is fine :)

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  • 7 months later...

I've always wondered why Luke's Theme appears in Scherzo for X-Wings (or the cue where the X-Wing appears). Anyone knows what was Williams' intention on using Luke's theme? Luke doesn't appear nor is talked about in that flight scene in the movie.

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Yeah it kinda ceased being solely Luke's Theme in the prequels and morphed into the 'Main Theme' for Star Wars. Although it clearly returned to its intended purpose by the end of ROTS.

 

This continued (with some exceptions) in the ST, where the theme is generally used for Luke. I wish he relied less on the Force Theme and used Luke's Theme more though... especially in TLJ.

 

Ultimately it has dual purposes now, like Ben's Theme morphing into the Force Theme, or the Rebel Fanfare becoming the Millennium Falcon Theme.

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14 minutes ago, crumbs said:

Interestingly, other than Scherzo for X-Wings, the sequel trilogy does a pretty good job reinstating the theme as belonging to Luke (although there were too many Force Theme references where Luke's Theme should have been used, for my liking).

Does it? We Luke and R2 on the Falcon, the children telling the story of Luke on Crait in TLJ and we have Luke talking to Rey on Ahch-To in the Rise of Skywalker. Every other appearance of Luke's Theme has been when Luke is not there and they do not mention him. 

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9 minutes ago, crumbs said:

FWIW, I believe his theme was used in an earlier version of Peace and Purpose, before they settled on the Force Theme (someone please correct me if that's not true!!)

Wow I didn't know that. I would love to hear that. I still thinks the Force Theme works the best but it would have been intresting to hear it. 

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11 minutes ago, SilverTrumpet said:

 

I know I'm 9 months late to all this. Where is this stuff coming from?

 

People trade sheet music, including early sketches Williams wrote for the sequels. Eventually people made synth mockups of the abandoned, early ideas.

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That's not true.  There's only 10 cues out there for TROS.  And for TLJ I don't think his handwritten sketches are out there, are they?  I think it's just the JKMS digital sheets

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38 minutes ago, Pando said:

Yes, sheet music, but it's kind of mind blowing that this mockup gives you the only chance to actually hear it if it was never recorded.

 

How is that mind blowing? 

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11 hours ago, BrotherSound said:

Ok, everyone got all that? There will be a quiz! 😃

 

My head hurts reading all that. :lol:

 

Realistically, in addition to the final film version (essentially OST Peace and Purpose, sans microedits), how many alternate tracks would be required to include all the alternate inserts on an expanded TLJ? Can multiple inserts be combined into the same track, or do they all cover the same material?

 

I know Mike found a way to include 5 versions of the Boston Reunion cue with WOTW (partly thanks to the rebuilt OST) but I'm not sure how he includes 5-6 variations on Luke's death. Not sure Williams would approve that many alternates if the only difference is a short insert (unless the inserts could be placed back-to-back, like how Mike combined the 2 versions of Vader's funeral pyre on the ROTJ SE).

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8 hours ago, crumbs said:

Realistically, in addition to the final film version (essentially OST Peace and Purpose, sans microedits), how many alternate tracks would be required to include all the alternate inserts on an expanded TLJ? Can multiple inserts be combined into the same track, or do they all cover the same material?


Many of the inserts include the same material from the original cue at the beginning and end to make them easier to blend into the original. If you were to only include the unique material from each (and if all were actually recorded), I think you could pare it down to the final version and two alternates, something like this:

 

1. 9M85 with 9M85 A New

The final version, with the insert replacing the original version, minus any microedits.

 

2. 9M85 and 9M85 Alt Insert

The original version and the Luke’s theme insert seem like they could work side-by-side.

 

3. 9M85 with 9M85A, 9M85B9M85C

This would be the hardest to pull off, but I could see a way to combine the unique bits of all three of these. Not sure if it’d be possible to edit convincingly, though.

 

8 hours ago, crumbs said:

I know Mike found a way to include 5 versions of the Boston Reunion cue with WOTW (partly thanks to the rebuilt OST) but I'm not sure how he includes 5-6 variations on Luke's death.


Yeah, it would be very unwieldy to include a completely different track for each short insert, and even three discs wouldn’t allow the space for it. 
 

I just hope they actually give Matessino a crack at it sometime in the not-too-distant future!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Re: Scherzo for X-Wings, it seems to me the concert arrangement was written first. It works as a concert piece. Sections of it are quoted in the film, but not really in a way that works musically. I wonder if it is something Williams felt inspired to write really early on in the process (before much of the plot of Star Wars VII had solidified)—a Luke Skywalker Suite that Williams assumed he could use somehow in a film about Luke Skywalker.

 

Other musings. An extraordinary number of concert pieces emerge out of TFA, many of them with titles evoking classical symphonic movements. Might he have been thinking at one point:

  1. Allegro (Rey’s Theme)
  2. Adagio
  3. Scherzo
  4. March

My understanding is he was not signed on for the full trilogy at that point, and might have originally been coaxed into doing TFA as a grand passing-the-baton event (as it was for Harrison Ford). Of course he half-joked about how he only did TLJ out of fondness for Daisy Ridley, but I don’t doubt the implication that his involvement in Star Wars VIII and IX was not a given and had to be negotiated.

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8 hours ago, Pellaeon said:

Re: Scherzo for X-Wings, it seems to me the concert arrangement was written first. It works as a concert piece. Sections of it are quoted in the film, but not really in a way that works musically. I wonder if it is something Williams felt inspired to write really early on in the process (before much of the plot of Star Wars VII had solidified)—a Luke Skywalker Suite that Williams assumed he could use somehow in a film about Luke Skywalker.

 

So, 'Scherzo for X-Wings' is a pretty unusual case: the film version was written first (though it's heavily edited in the film) in September 2015, but it was written "wild", meaning it has no indicated sync points at all. Most JW action cues have dozens of sync points. The concert version followed in November, though the first minute or so of both is identical.

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30 minutes ago, BrotherSound said:

 

So, 'Scherzo for X-Wings' is a pretty unusual case: the film version was written first (though it's heavily edited in the film) in September 2015, but it was written "wild", meaning it has no indicated sync points at all. Most JW action cues have dozens of sync points. The concert version followed in November, though the first minute or so of both is identical.

 

Wonder if they didn't have a locked edit for JW to score, so Abrams just told him to record the piece without sync points and they'd edit the music to fit the film?

 

Basically a precursor to the entirety of TROS :lol:

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13 hours ago, BrotherSound said:

As written, 7M67 Rey vs. Ren was 4:56 and covered the entire duel from Rey getting the saber through the Falcon arriving. It cut away briefly for Hux and Snoke, but no fighter battle. Later inserts added an indication to ‘Overlap Scherzo’ just as the duel begins, as it happens in the finished film.

 

That's a pretty substantial difference to the OST track length (3:14). Or is the unreleased section where the ground splits in half and Rey runs to Finn all included in 6M67? That sounds partially dialed out in the final cut.

 

And there's that really awkwardly edited Evacuation cue slapped in the middle.

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4 hours ago, BrotherSound said:

 

Well, it's complicated: yes, the original 7M67 Rey vs. Ren would have continued through the earthquake and the arrival of the Falcon, the later of which was replaced by the beginning of 7M68A A Light In The Snow and Flying Home.

 

Woah, does that mean the beautiful opening to "Farewell and the Trip" was not originally in the film? 

 

 

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