This Friday, July 3rd, will mark the 30th anniversary of Back to the Future, the time-traveling hit from director Robert Zemeckis (Forrest Gump, Flight) that made Michael J. Fox (Family Ties, Casualties of War) an instant superstar and became an instant classic in American cinema. Co-written by Zemeckis and screenwriter Bob Gale (1941, Used Cars), Back to the Future was a huge hit among fans and critics alike, receiving an Academy Award for Best Sound Editing/Effects and another 3 nominations for Best Screenplay, Best Sound, and Best Music (Original Song); Huey Lewis even received a Grammy in 1986 for The Power of Love, which he wrote specifically for the film’s soundtrack. I think many fans would agree that Christopher Lloyd (One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, Angels in the Outfield) deserved a nomination for Best Supporting Actor, but that aside Back to the Future proved a great success. Since 1985 the film has been followed by two sequels, and although Zemeckis has said that a remake is definitely not happening, he is currently working to adapt the movie into a new musical due out in the next year or two. Either way, I’m sure there will be no shortage of marathons on TV this weekend, but if you happen to have your own copy be sure to watch Back to the Future this weekend to celebrate the anniversary…and Independence Day too!!
The Oscar-winning composer behind such famous scores as Titanic, Field of Dreams, Apollo 13, and A Perfect Storm, James Horner, has died at the age of 61 in Santa Barbara, California. Horner was flying a small single-engine aircraft when the plane went down, killing him and potentially another passenger. Horner’s reputation in Hollywood was impeccable; he was a long-time collaborator with director James Cameron (Titanic, Avatar) and producer Roger Corman (The Lady in Red, Battle Beyond the Stars), and was nominated for 10 Academy Awards (winning 2 for Titanic) and also won 4 Grammy’s (from a total of 11 nominations) for his work on Celine Dion‘s My Heart Will Go On and Linda Ronstadt and James Ingram‘s Somewhere Out There. Horner’s most recent work include Antione Fuqua‘s upcoming boxing drama Southpaw with Jake Gyllenhaal, Rachel McAdams, and Naomie Harris, and The 33, a drama revolving around the coal-mining disaster in which 33 miners were trapped underground for 69 days. These will become Horner’s final projects; Southpaw is due out July 24th, while The 33 is expected in theaters November 13th, 2015. His work, his passion for music and his influence on film will be truly missed.
Many people may not be aware of Jonny Greenwood’s musical contributions outside of the English rock-band Radiohead, but the 42 year old musician is quickly becoming one of Hollywood’s hidden gems. Greenwood won a Grammy for his work on director Paul Thomas Anderson’s There Will Be Blood (2007), and also worked with the director on his more recent film, The Master (2012). Before working with Anderson, however, Greenwood’s music was featured in several big name motion pictures, including Children of Men (2006), Unfaithful (2002), Vanilla Sky (2001), Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005), and Romeo+Juliet (1996). Now Greenwood is also being contracted to score Anderson’s adaptation of Thomas Pynchon’s Inherent Vice, which is scheduled for release sometime this year and which stars Jena Malone, Joaquin Phoenix, Josh Brolin, Reese Witherspoon, Owen Wilson, Benicio Del Toro, and Martin Short. Although Anderson’s films have won (and received even more nominations) for the Oscars and Golden Globes, Greenwood’s work as a composer for the big screen has yet to be recognized by either film organization. Maybe this time he will get his big break, but either way his talents can no longer be overlooked by anyone in the film industry, even if Paul Anderson is the only filmmaker in Hollywood to let the musician work his magic. Stay tuned for more information on Inherent Vice.