When director Joseph Kosinski revived Disney’s sci-fi classic TRON with the belated but visually dazzling 2010 sequel TRON: Legacy, the results were a mixed bag to say the least. One thing that pretty much everyone could agree upon when it came to that film, however, is that the score by French electronic group Daft Punk was the best thing it had going for it. Eschewing a traditional film score in favor of the pulsing, electronic sounds of Daft Punk worked wonders when it came to bringing the world of TRON to life and really making it hum, and it’s not hard to imagine that the film could have been far less effective without such a perfect marriage of image and sound.
TRON: Legacy isn’t the only film that’s gone the nontraditional route when it comes to finding its music in recent years, either. From Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood scoring Paul Thomas Anderson movies, to Nine Inch Nails’ Trent Reznor scoring David Fincher films, to The Chemical Brothers providing the music for Joe Wright’s Hanna, bringing a mainstream musician in to score your film instead of hiring one of the well-established film score composers seems to have become a full-scale trend, and a trend that has so far provided us with some amazing music.
Since it worked for him once, Kosinski is looking to go back to that well for his next sci-fi adventure, Oblivion. The Playlist reports that in order to find the musical accompaniment for this Tom Cruise-starring tale of a scorched Earth, the director has hired yet another French electronic group to do the deed – this time, it’s M83. If you don’t know M83, they make sweeping, moody music that already sounds like it might have come from the score of some great movie you haven’t seen. Their last two albums, “Saturdays = Youth” and “Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming,” have been amongst the best reviewed of their release years and have produced some of the most re-listenable singles of the past who knows how long. So now, after a decade of making music that sounds like it belongs in a movie, the group will finally get a chance to do it for real.
M83 frontman Anthony Gonzalez said of his new job, “I’ve wanted to do soundtracks for so long, and starting with such an ambitious project, especially in the sci-fi category, means a lot to me. I’m not afraid to do my first soundtrack on a big Hollywood movie, with a big budget and a lot of pressure…I like challenges and it excites me more than frightens me. I can’t wait to hear my music played by amazing musicians, and an orchestra and brass and maybe choirs. It’s a chance to create something big and I’m ready for it.”
As to why he went with M83, Kosinski has this to say, “I was listening to his music back in 2005 when I first wrote this story, so he was part of this from the very beginning in my mind, kind of creatively. And about two years ago, when I started putting together a shortlist of people I’d love to talk to for this project, I sat down with him and we talked about it. And it was very clear he had a passion for film and I knew just from his electronic music that he had the potential to create something epic.”
Whether Kosinski is going to be able to make something that’s more solid all around with Oblivion than he did with TRON: Legacy remains to be seen, but now it’s pretty much guaranteed that this movie will at least look and sound amazing. And that’s certainly enough reason to mark its April 26, 2013 release date on the calendar.