19 November 2010 at 08:35 GMT
Harry Potter Fan Zone, along with a number of other fan websites, recently caught up with composer Alexandre Desplat to talk about his music for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1.
Harry Potter Fan Zone: What was the first piece of music or melody that you wrote for this film and how did the rest of the music evolve from that idea?
Alexandre Desplat (AD): I worked many bits and pieces, that’s always the way I build my soundtracks. I take a lot of notes on a music pad, on a music writing little book. And so I take notes from these. And, and it’s many of them, it’s not just one. One of the ideas was the opening titles, the theme of “Obliviation”, and most of the “Ministry of Magic”. These three were the three I started to play around with, which means trying different ideas. But I can’t say that one was leading the others. ‘Cause at the same time I was also playing around with “Hedwig’s Theme”, making many questions of how I could twist the neck of this theme and make it different and bring it into my own little world of music. Except that at the end it did not happen because there was not enough room for the scene to be in the version that I’d written. So it’s really a complex process, it’s not just one theme, it’s many, many ideas and themes. I just record ’cause I know I’m going to use a rhythm pattern that I’m going to use and reuse and display here and there.
Question: “Obliviate” seems to be a reoccurring theme in the film. It’s somewhat of a much darker version to “Hedwig’s Theme” in a sense that the track has a sense of flight to it. Could you talk about that track, and how you came up with it?
AD: Well, first of all it, has nothing to do with “Hedwig’s Theme”. It’s completely away from the “Hedwig’s Theme”. There’s not any combinations of notes that sound like “Hedwig’s Theme”. That’s important to state. And if I may add to that statement that I loved the “Hedwig’s Theme” and I was actually impatient to write a version of the theme. But unfortunately, the movie was repelling, it was not. Because of the nature of the film, this theme, didn’t match. So, that’s the first thing. Now “Obliviate”, it is the seeds of the score. Actually this piece is the most important piece. That’s the piece around which the whole score was built. The idea was to find a theme that had a sense of sorrow, loss of innocence, but still with a propelling motor, and also a sense of wide sound to deliver an epic kind of feeling to it. Actually, this piece opens the movie. It’s the first melody that you’ll hear. And it’s music that goes with the theme where the three heroes leave their families, their homes to go to the unknown. They go on the road to fight the dark forces and it captures their anxiety, their fears, their sadness. And that’s why this theme will be recurring in various shades all over the film.
Question: Fans really love “Hedwig’s Theme”. How did you go about choosing which scenes would feature it?
AD: Well, it’s very easy to understand that. The movie being so different from the previous ones because it’s the first time our heroes are away from Hogwarts. They’re not children anymore. They’re young adults. And the theme of Hedwig is really related to the early days of Harry Potter, Ron, and Hermione. We tried really hard with David Yates to use it at very specific moments. Some of them did not make it until the end of the process, unfortunately, because they were kind of bringing the children to childhood while the movie was doing exactly the opposite, bringing the children into adulthood. So it’s only a few moments when he’s leaving his house, we see Hedwig go in the sky, away from Harry’s hand, when Hedwig is killed, also, by one of the Death Eaters. We’re not related anymore, neither to Hedwig, neither to the childhood of these heroes. That’s why and how the theme is not recurring more than that, sadly, because it’s a fantastic melody. Fantastic.
16 November 2010 at 15:33 GMT
Earlier this month Harry Potter Fan Zone spoke with the cast and crew of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows as part of the London press junket.
Below you can read our interviews about the music of the final two films, including producers David Heyman and David Barron commenting on the possibility of John Williams scoring the final Potter film.
Harry Potter Fan Zone (HPFZ): Was John Williams ever asked to score Deathly Hallows: Part 2? Did he decline?
David Heyman (DH): Yes, he was. We wanted to make it work with John but John’s schedule didn’t permit.
David Barron (DB): He was just unavailable unfortunately.
HPFZ: He wanted to do it?
Both: He did, very much so.
DH: We asked him around the time of [movie] six. Actually, we talked to him all the way along [about coming back for the end] but his schedule didn’t permit.
DB: It’s incredible for a man of advancing years who you think might be taking it easy, we spoke to him almost two years before the scoring sessions for this film and already then he had schedule issues.
DH: And then he tried to work his schedule to try and accommodate it but it just wasn’t possible.
HPFZ: Alexandre Desplat mentioned that you picked very specific moments for “Hedwig’s Theme”. What was so significant about those moments?
David Yates (DY): Anything that felt like we were being nostalgic or in a way reflective of the past. That’s when we used it.
HPFZ: Was it a conscious decision for him to play with the melody?
DY: Yeah, we wanted it to feel like it was all getting a bit distressed. We wanted to sort of [mess] it up a bit.
We’ll have more, including an interview with Alexandre Desplat, the composer for the Deathly Hallows films, later this week.
16 November 2010 at 13:49 GMT
Check out some of our photos from the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 world premiere in London below.
11 November 2010 at 04:41 GMT
The London premiere of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 is today at the Empire & Odeon in Leicester Square! HPFZ webmaster Andy McCray will be at the event from start to finish, so be sure to check back throughout the day for his coverage. In addition, you can watch LIVE coverage of the premiere beginning at 12 p.m. EST below.
The live stream has now ended, check out a recap video below
[flv:http://pdl.warnerbros.com/wbmovies/deathlyhallows/pt1/premiere/hp7worldpremieredomesticedit_med.mov 640 266]
Check out our photos from the event by clicking here.
Follow us on Twitter for live updates!
8 November 2010 at 22:28 GMT
Harry Potter Fan Zone is giving away copies of the ultimate editions of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban and Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire on DVD and Blu-ray!
One lucky visitor will receive both ultimate editions on Blu-ray plus a Blu-ray disc player valued at $299. Three runners up will win two sets of both ultimate editions on DVD.
The Prisoner of Azkaban Ultimate Editions will give you these bonus features:
- Creating the World of Harry Potter Part 3: Creatures and featurette – Tour Nick Dudman’s Creature Shop
- Additional Special Features: Featurettes – Creating the Vision: an interview with J.K. Rowling and the filmmakers, Conjuring a Scene: Creating Buckbeak and the Dementors for the screen; Additional Scenes and more
- 48-Page Creatures Photo Book
- Two Collectible Character Cards: Hermione Granger, Sirius Black
- Year 3 Lenticular Card
- Bonus Digital Copy of the Theatrical Film
- Creating the World of Harry Potter Part 4: Sound & Music
- Additional Special Features: Featurettes – Preparing for the Yule Ball; conversations with the Cast; Reflections on the Fourth Film; and more
- 44-Page Sound & Music Photo Book
- Two Collectible Character Cards: Ronald Weasley, Alastor “Mad-Eye” Moody
- Year 4 Lenticular Card
- Bonus Digital Copy of the Theatrical Film
7 November 2010 at 12:04 GMT
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 is the subject of this week’s issue of Entertainment Weekly, with Dan Radcliffe featuring on the cover.
Radcliffe has always been pretty fearless. At 11, when most boys are afraid of being vulnerable, he talked about how he found out that he’d been cast as the boy wizard, after months of auditions. “I was in the bath at the time,” he said then. “My dad came running in and said, ‘Guess who they want to play Harry Potter?’ and I started to cry. It was probably the best moment of my life.” In the years since, Radcliffe has proved he isn’t afraid to reveal himself. He famously appeared naked on stage in Equus, both in London’s West End and on Broadway. (There’s even a reference to it in Hallows-Part 1.
In one scene, Ron, Hermione and Harry, on the run in London, enter a café. On the wall in one corner is a poster for Equus.) Radcliffe is still taking risks. He’s currently rehearsing to star in a stage musical, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, and trying to not think about saying goodbye to Harry after all these years. “It’s key for me to keep working,” he says. “Focusing on other things rather than moping around the house.”
Read more by clicking here. The magazine is also in stores now.