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Topic: How come composers never become producers?

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  1. #1
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    How come composers never become producers?

    You always hear about how Actors Like Tobey Mcguire like a script but he can't act in it because he is doing Spiderman, so they get Edward Norton to instead, but Tobey goes on as a producer and funds the project instead.

    How come this never happens with film composers? Why do we always sit around and wait for the Directors to come to us with scripts? Shouldn't we as artists always be on the look out for a script that would allow us to make the best possible connection between picture and sound?

    Let's say you come with a great theme that sounds like a shark coming at you(jaws) what if you went and found a script with a shark and presented that to 20th century Fox?

    I'm just thinking out loud, but it seems to me that since music is the most influential part of a movie along with acting, that we as composers should be able to have as much control over a movie as an actor.

    Thoughts anyone?

  2. #2

    Re: How come composers never become producers?

    I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that composers are really not as admired as actors in and out of the film industry. Money follows admiration and with money comes some power.

    Nobody's going to see a film just because some big name composer did the music(except for us of course). But billions of people will see a movie just because Tom Cruise is in it. It's just boils down to that I think.

    Though I wish more composers would take their money and actually produce smaller films. Hans tried this but I think he just doesn't have the time. It's tough composing music and if you're really busy you won't have the time for much of anything else. Whereas even a big name actor will go a year or sometimes two without acting. There's plenty of time to produce a movie then.

    Cheers,


    Jose

  3. #3
    Senior Member Bruce A. Richardson's Avatar
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    Re: How come composers never become producers?

    Well, I think the answer to that is that film is an inherently visual medium, and that always comes first. You go **see** a movie. Of course, there's The Wall. But there's no reason one couldn't produce whatever he likes. Who knows, maybe you're the annointed one. You're still young. All it takes is $$. Or a willingness to starve and hope someone will provide the $$ on the back end.

    All a producer is, ultimately, is one who creates product.

  4. #4
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    Re: How come composers never become producers?

    Nope....

    That's just not the way it works. First of all, too much trouble for a "composer", of all people, to try and wrangle a film together.... especially based on some "theme". Think of how that sounds (Hi, can you write a script around this theme I came up with).


    The reason actors produce films is because they all have production companies with the sole purpose of finding films to produce. Which really has little to do with the actor most of the time. Composers have enough on their hands. Besides no studio in their right mind would give a composer a production deal. Just ain't gonna happen.

    No one at any studio would take a call seriously from a composer trying to pitch some film idea....

    It's two separate worlds...

    In Hollywood the composer is far from the most important guy around town.



    KID

  5. #5
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    Re: How come composers never become producers?

    You'd have better odds of "directing" a film... and also writing the music.


    It's obvious that a few guys started in music first, then got the directing bug... now they do both. that's the only way "in" (that I know of).



    KID

  6. #6
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    Re: How come composers never become producers?

    J.J. Abrams is a composer who is also an award-winning producer. He composed the theme song for the hit series 'Alias' and also is the Producer ofAlias; J.J. is the creator and executive producer of the hit series "Lost"; and is co-creator & Executive Producer of 'Felicity' as well as co-writer of the theme song. In addition he is a screenwriter of such films as "Armageddon," "Forever Young," and "Regarding Henry". J.J. Abrams also wrote the script for upcoming Warner Brothers' Superman movie. Talk about talent!

    Gary Garritan

    PS: J.J. Abrams is also a GPO user and you can read his comments here: http://www.garritan.com/endorsements.html (2nd from top)



  7. #7

    Re: How come composers never become producers?

    Quote Originally Posted by Evan Gamble
    You always hear about how Actors Like Tobey Mcguire like a script but he can't act in it because he is doing Spiderman, so they get Edward Norton to instead, but Tobey goes on as a producer and funds the project instead.

    How come this never happens with film composers? Why do we always sit around and wait for the Directors to come to us with scripts? Shouldn't we as artists always be on the look out for a script that would allow us to make the best possible connection between picture and sound?

    Let's say you come with a great theme that sounds like a shark coming at you(jaws) what if you went and found a script with a shark and presented that to 20th century Fox?

    I'm just thinking out loud, but it seems to me that since music is the most influential part of a movie along with acting, that we as composers should be able to have as much control over a movie as an actor.

    Thoughts anyone?
    Composers are producers, but most often in other genre, not film. Such genre include, but aren't limited to, musicals and opera.
    Peter L. Alexander
    www.professionalorchestration.com
    www.alexanderpublishing.com
    Learn it right the first time.

  8. #8

    Re: How come composers never become producers?

    I really don't see why not. I mean if I had a couple of mil $$$ to invest in making a movie, I probably would. Tobey McGuire has a few mil. too many and some definite connections to others with money that he's able to.

    I don't think it's an issue of time or talent, I think it's an issue of money. With the current state of things, most of us are too busy just trying to make the bills and keep the wife happy to be thinking of investing into anything other than mutual funds! If my name was Mike Post, and the bug bit me, I would absolutely make a movie (or two, or three).
    >>Kays
    http://www.musicbykays.com
    Music Composition for Feature Films, Television and Interactive Entertainment

  9. #9
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    Re: How come composers never become producers?

    I mainly got this thought from Director, writer, editor, composer Robert Rodriguiz(gigastudio user). And the director, writer, and composer of "The Others".

    I've been writing a novel for a year now, and hope to be done by the time I graduate college 4 years from now. While I'm doing this I've been thinking about the score.

    It seems like all the big names (Williams, Elfman, Zimmer, Shore, Newton Howard) could put some ideas into films like Jose was saying. Maybe the next generation of composer can be more powerful than before?

  10. #10

    Re: How come composers never become producers?

    that example is backwards Gary

    Abrams got notoriety writing scripts and then producing TV shows before he wrote the Alias theme.

    if thats the example, then you could say the same about Robert Rodriguez

    or better yet

    Clint Eastwood...

    John Carpenter perhaps?

    I think the question here is more of, why dont composers who start as composers of movies, begin to produce flicks...

    the answer probably is that the composers that actually have some clout and $$$, actually love making music not films.

    Most of the guys mentioned about have love of creating, and talent to boot, and work themselves into a place to where they CAN write music. They technically are not "just" composers, who become producers.

    I'm not saying that they arent composers, I mean they make music...but its backwards.

    Unlike most actors who are just that at the beginning and then find their way (possibly sometimes weasel their way) into producing.

    and I dont think its impossible for a composer to find a gig, if they are talented enough to write a script as a starting point, it can be fleshed out later....

    I've written many a scene out to music in my head, some of them have ended up in scripts for games, so its possible to start with the music side.

    but really...if you start going that far, you're not really a composer funding a flick anymore, you're one of those damned multi-hyphenate-hyphenates. (Atleast you started out as a composer, so its possible)

    its all about your expectations too. Kid's thoughts on it seem a bt extreme. I mean I could see a composer CO-producing on a small film...why not?

    I think that, for a composer without alot of clout, to break into bigger scenes and different areas, they have to be VERY talented and have a huge amount of vision and conviction.

    I dont see it as being all that impossible at all tho.


    EDIT: read your new post Evan.

    Well then there are a few others and more directors will dabble more and more into music, as well as FX I'm sure. As the tools become easier to use, directors can begin to take more control, and thta is something that most people who create things they love are unwilling to give up

    but also expect a lack of those "happy accidents" of composers and directors workign well together and trusting each other to come up with something only THEY (not one of them) could create.

    This is a place wher I wish I didnt know much about technology, its hard for me to not suggest ideas or want to have some sort of control over the programming par or even gameplay and story part of games I work on.

    Its probably the same for them, since most game guys know tech enough to fool around with an app like Acid or Reason
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