One of the most honored films in cinema history, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, swept the music categories of the 76th annual Academy Awards(R), with Oscars(R) for both Best Original Score and Best Original Song. Both the soundtrack and the song "Into the West" had also won Golden Globe awards the previous month for Best Original Score and Best Song, respectively.

Music for "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King" is composed, orchestrated and conducted by Howard Shore, who also scored the two previous films in the trilogy and was honored with an Academy Award(R) in 2001 for his work on the first installment, "The Fellowship of the Ring."

Best Original Song, "Into the West," was written by Fran Walsh, Howard Shore and Annie Lennox, who also performed the song for "The Return of the King" soundtrack. Additionally, the Grammy award-winning vocalist sang "Into the West" at the Academy Awards(R) telecast before a worldwide audience.

"The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King" includes such Howard Shore originals as "Minas Tirith," "Twilight and Shadow," "A Storm Is Coming" and "The End of All Things." The film's title track features renowned flautist Sir James Galway, diva Renee Fleming and "Lord of the Rings" star Viggo Mortensen. Howard Shore's score to the second "The Lord of the Rings" film, "The Two Towers," won the Grammy(R) Award for Best Soundtrack in early 2004.

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"Howard has always understood the emotional truth that lies at the center of this story," remarks "The Return of the King"'s Academy Award(R)-winning director Peter Jackson. "He has succeeded in drawing the audience into the very heart of its beauty, heroism and sadness. Howard's music weaves seamlessly from image to image, scene to scene, film to film, binding score, characters and story into the rich tapestry of a far bigger and more complex picture. This has been his great strength as a composer, for Howard has shaped the score for `The Lord of the Rings' not over one, but three films, establishing and developing powerful themes, that much like Tolkien's work itself, `grew in the telling.'"

Music for "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King" was produced by Howard Shore. Executive Album Producers are Peter Jackson, Fran Walsh and Paul Broucek. Executive Producer for WMG Soundtracks is Danny Bramson.

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Brian B.