Earlier this summer, director Quentin Tarantino went to San Diego Comic Con to promote his revenge Western The Hateful Eight, where he revealed that legendary composer Ennio Morricone has written the original score for this highly-anticipated movie. The score will be Ennio Morricone's first Western score in over 40 years. It's one of the few times that the director has actually used a composer for his films, since he usually takes pieces of scores from other movies and recycles them. Earlier this month, Quentin Tarantino screened The Hateful Eight at the Director's Guild of America, where he revealed that Ennio Morricone's score actually brings in his unused work from John Carpenter's 1982 classic The Thing.
The director explained at Comic Con that The Hateful Eight was the first project he thought deserved an original score, which lead him to meeting Ennio Morricone. Ironically, the video presentation shown at SDCC featured some of Ennio Morricone's work on The Thing. The filmmaker said during the Q&A portion of The Hateful Eight screening at the DGA that Ennio Morricone didn't think he'd have the time to compose a score for The Hateful Eight, but he came up with a plan that involved using his largely unused score from The Thing. Here's what the director had to say, paraphrasing what Ennio Morricone said to him during their meeting.
"(Ennio Morricone said) 'I wrote a whole orchestra score [for 'The Thing'], and I wrote a whole synthesizer score, because I knew that was what [John Carpenter] was used to, and I gave him everything, and the only thing he used in the entire movie was the synthesizer main title [track].' So basically, if you stay away from the synthesizer main title, all that music that's on the soundtrack album has never been used in a movie ever. So, he goes, 'What I can do, is I'll write the theme...and with the other Thing pieces of music, now you have your original score that's never been used in a movie before.'"
Of course, there is another major parallel with The Thing and The Hateful Eight at play, since both movies star Kurt Russell. However, Quentin Tarantino revealed that, once Ennio Morricone started working on the theme, the composer told the director the next day that he will provide more music for The Hateful Eight. Here's what the director had to say about the music that Ennio Morricone kept contributing.
"(Ennio Morricone said) 'I'm going to write you more music.' And I think he literally sat down that night and started composing the theme that he was talking about and got more inspired, and came up with more music. And then all of a sudden ten minutes of music became seventeen minutes of music, became thirty-five minutes of music. And so with that, and the unused Thing portions that I used, [I've got] my original score."
What remains to be seen is if this mixture of previously-composed music and the new work by Ennio Morricone will disqualify his score from contention in the Best Original Score category at the The Academy Awards. The Academy has a number of strict rules in place for both the Original Score and Best Original Song, so it seems possible that the composer's work may not be recognized by the Academy. What do you think about these new details regarding The Hateful Eight?