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James Newton Howard - Raya and the Last Dragon (2021)


Edmilson
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James Newton Howard Scoring Disney’s ‘Raya and the Last Dragon’

 

James Newton Howard (The Hunger Games, King Kong, The Sixth Sense, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Signs, Maleficent) has recently been scoring the upcoming animated feature Raya and the Last Dragon. The film is directed by Don Hall (Big Hero 6, Winnie the Pooh) & Carlos López Estrada (Blindspotting) and stars Kelly Marie Tran and Awkwafina. The movie tells the story of a fearless warrior as she seeks a water dragon who can transform into a human being to save the realm from evil forces. Adele Lim (Crazy Rich Asians) and Qui Nguyen wrote the screenplay. Osnat Shurer (Moana) and Peter Del Vecho (Frozen, The Princess and the Frog) are producing the Walt Disney Animation Studios production. Howard has previously composed the music for several movies for Disney Animation, including Dinosaur, Atlantis: The Lost Empire and Treasure Island. Raya and the Last Dragon is currently scheduled to be released in theaters nationwide on March 12, 2021 by Walt Disney Pictures.

 

 

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1 minute ago, Thor said:

I saw the trailer for this a couple of weeks ago, but I didn't know JNH was scoring. 

 

Nobody did.  It was just announced today.

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 1 month later...

Full trailer

 

 

 

 

 

Also:

 

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During a recent press day, Raya's filmmakers told EW that while the film won't feature characters singing, there will be music influenced by Southeast Asia, which is the cultural inspiration for Raya.

 

"Our composer, James Newton Howard [The Dark Knight, The Hunger Games], did a lot of research and worked with musicians from the region as well to find the specific instrumentation," producer Osnat Shurer said. "But he was telling a story as a good composer does in music and lifting us as we need lifting, and building the emotion. I think he did a really beautiful job."

 

https://ew.com/movies/trailers/awkwafina-raya-and-the-last-dragon-trailer/

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Someone on FSM said Disney Records will drop an OST album on Friday March 5th, the same day the film hits Disney+, but I don't know what their source is

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I'm excited about the "ethnic JNH" part. He does particularly well with that kind of sound, like Zimmer.

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2 minutes ago, Edmilson said:

That's probably not incorrect though. I'm expecting the OST to drop alongside the movie.

 

Oh yea for sure, no reason to assume anything other than exactly that will happen

 

I doubt there will be a physical CD either, unless Intrada makes it happen

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4 hours ago, Jay said:

 

Oh yea for sure, no reason to assume anything other than exactly that will happen

 

I doubt there will be a physical CD either, unless Intrada makes it happen

Soul has a physical CD release, so why not this?

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16 hours ago, Thor said:

I'm excited about the "ethnic JNH" part. He does particularly well with that kind of sound, like Zimmer.

 

Yeah, me too. I also expect the score to have more in common with the more mature fantasy writing of The Last Airbender, Snow White/Huntsman films, The Water Horse and Maleficent than his previous Disney animation works. 

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1 hour ago, LSH said:

 

Yeah, me too. I also expect the score to have more in common with the more mature fantasy writing of The Last Airbender, Snow White/Huntsman films, The Water Horse and Maleficent than his previous Disney animation works. 

 

Sure, that's fine too. But as far as I can tell, JNH hasn't really done a score with a fullblown ethnic tinge since BLOOD DIAMOND in 2006 (although there might be bits and pieces in other scores since then). So between this and JUNGLE CRUISE, it looks to be a great year for those of us who love that particular sound of his.

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I'm so excited for this one!!! :rock:

I wish they would release a track or two in advance, like they did for Fantastic Beasts series. But I guess that's only a Warner Bros. thing.

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On 1/26/2021 at 12:11 PM, Jay said:

Full trailer

 

 

 

 

I watched this trailer and now I can't get the "I. Am. That. Good." chant off my head :( 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Meh. They could've released a clip from the movie featuring James' score, or maybe he could release a single from the OST like Holkenborg did with JL.

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1 hour ago, Edmilson said:

Meh. They could've released a clip from the movie featuring James' score, or maybe he could release a single from the OST like Holkenborg did with JL.

 

Or Like JNH does with the Fantastic Beasts series… 

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No idea.

 

Btw, I've just been told by Disney Norway that there will be no theatrical press screenings of the film, due to the pandemic. So I'll have to watch a screener link that is made available February 27.

 

I have no idea yet, however, if this will receive a limited theatrical run or go straight to Disney+. Perhaps some of you know?

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In the USA its one of their "premium" dealies, meaning you have to pay extra on top of your Disney+ subscription to watch it; This is the same thing they did last year with Mulan.

 

It will also show in theaters here as well

 

I'm sure things are different from country to country

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Here it will come out in both theaters and Disney Plus for an additional fee (which I've heard it will be pretty expensive).

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Apparently an original song has been recorded for the movie. And in the article says the score will be released next friday! Really looking forward to this.

 

http://filmmusicreporter.com/2021/02/19/disneys-raya-and-the-last-dragon-to-feature-original-song-lead-the-way-by-jhene-aiko/

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Just finished listening to the full score. It's alright, but definitely more modern JNH; I didn't really expect there to be more of a classic Disney/JNH vibe anyway I guess. 

 

It's filled to the rim with synthesizers, and the orchestra is a bit too sparse for my taste.

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6 hours ago, Manakin Skywalker said:

Just finished listening to the full score. It's alright, but definitely more modern JNH; I didn't really expect there to be more of a classic Disney/JNH vibe anyway I guess. 

 

It's filled to the rim with synthesizers, and the orchestra is a bit too sparse for my taste.

 

Quite surprising to learn there is orchestra in there at all. I thought it was going to be plain synthesizers with a few ethnic instruments here and there. Most of the post-production seemingly took place during the pandemic. No way the protocols allowed enough people gathering under the same roof to get that traditional sound going - particularly not the brass and choir folks. Maybe that's what the synthesizers you mentioned are there for.

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7 hours ago, Manakin Skywalker said:

Just finished listening to the full score. It's alright, but definitely more modern JNH; I didn't really expect there to be more of a classic Disney/JNH vibe anyway I guess. 

 

It's filled to the rim with synthesizers, and the orchestra is a bit too sparse for my taste.

 

Yikes! It's leaked already?

 

Your description of the synths is actually very tantalizing to me.

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Oh wow, I really didn't think about the actual context… I thought we would get a nice fat big orchestra ROTFLMAO

Something like Dinosaurs, Maleficent, The Last Airbender, King Kong… You know, some of my favourite JNH scores. :unsure:

Just realized I shouldn't be as excited as I was, then… :(

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As long as the synths aren't "mimicking" an orchestral sound, but are used on their own terms (which JNH can do very well), it could be good.

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Just finished listening too.

 

I think this is maybe this year's Mulan, where people expected the score to be return to form for the composer, but the reality is not that simple

For those still expecting this is going to be like JNH's classic, well stop expecting now 😁

 

Frankly, if people dont know any better, this score could've been mistaken to be RCP/Lorne Balfe's.

And i don't blame JNH, i assume this is the studio/director's choice (we livin in a dubstep world now),

because for many small bits in this score, you can hear JNH's magic is still there. He's kinda suppressed imo

 

And the main theme is simple, consist of repeating four-notes, purely JNH. Maybe too simple.

 

Color me disappointed, but what should we expect? (Jungle Cruise of course, as JNH said in interview, he really loves the score)

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1 minute ago, PrayodiBA said:

Frankly, if people dont know any better, this score could've been mistaken to be RCP/Lorne Balfe's.

And i don't blame JNH, i assume this is the studio/director's choice (we livin in a dubstep world now),

 

Ha, ha...dubstep? That hasn't been fashionable for many years now.

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7 minutes ago, Thor said:

 

Ha, ha...dubstep? That hasn't been fashionable for many years now.

Haha let me rephrase it, EDM maybe the correct term. Any music with bassdrop in it.

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Maybe we'll get more traditional orchestral music on Jungle Cruise? That movie should've come out last year, so if JNH recorded the score before the pandemic, it'll probably be very orchestral.

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^^

I really hope that's the case,

as JNH stated in recent interview:

 

"...When they were temping “Jungle Cruise,” a score I'm really proud of that will come out in July [2021], they temped it with 145 minutes of action music that were all my demos. That was a really satisfying thing. It's twice the amount of work, of course, because if they change the scene, or if they want you to redo it, you have to redo the whole demo. There's a lot of work there...."

https://www.rogerebert.com/interviews/sometimes-you-get-lucky-composer-james-newton-howard-on-news-of-the-world

 

That statement gets my hyped.

 

--------

 

Anyway, while we're at it, the tracklist:

 

 

1. Jhené Aiko - Lead the Way

2. Prologue

3. Young Raya and Namaari

4. Betrayed

5. Search for the Last Dragon

6. Into the Shipwreck

7. Enter the Dragon

8. Fleeing from Tail

9. Captain Boun

10. Journey to Talon

11. Sisu Swims

12. Dragon Graveyard

13. Escape from Talon

14. Noi and the Ongis

15. Being People Is Hard

16. Spine Showdown

17. Running on Raindrops

18. Plans of Attack

19. Brothers and Sisters

20. The Meeting

21. Storming Fang

22. The Druun Close In

23. Return

24. The New World

 

Total Album Time: 01:10:04

 

----

 

Personally, the highlights are:

7. Enter the Dragon

11. Sisu Swims

17. Running on Raindrops

23. Return

24. The New World

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2 hours ago, PrayodiBA said:

Personally, the highlights are:

7. Enter the Dragon

11. Sisu Swims

17. Running on Raindrops

23. Return

24. The New World

 

If there is one thing that seemingly hasn't changed about the composer, it's got to be his fascination for "swimming". I can't recall a single score of his where some Swimming cue was included and it wasn't amongst the highlights.

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