Last week I got to do something extremely cool…I got to interview Hans Zimmer in his private Los Angeles recording studio! While I get to speak with actors and directors all the time, getting to talk with a great composer is not the norm. And getting to speak to one where he records his music…let’s just say I jumped at the chance to make this happen.
Thankfully, Zimmer could not have been nicer and while we spoke for over twenty minutes, our interview could have been all afternoon. That’s because as the composer of such scores as Sherlock Holmes, Gladiator, Black Hawk Down, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest and Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, Batman Begins, The Dark Knight (with James Newton Howard) Frost/Nixon, Inception and a ton of others….I had a million questions.
And while we talked about how he comes up with his music and all the normal questions, the best part was getting him to give me a tour of the room and show me all the equipment. If you’re a fan of Hans Zimmer, want to write music for movies, or just a movie fan curious how composers work, you are going to absolutely love this interview. Take a look after the jump:
**Before watching…one important note. Of all the times for this to happen…I had a slight technical issue with the sound on my tape due to my now replaced microphone. For the first minute in part one, the sound is going to be kind of fucked up. Don’t worry, it gets a lot better. Also, at some points you’ll hear a high pitch as we’re walking around the studio, but once he’s seated everything is fine. Sorry about this…I tried everything to clean it up.**
Hans Zimmer part 1
- Talks about his recording studio and how it’s like something out of Sherlock Holmes
- Moog synthesizers
- Demonstrates some of the equipment in his recording studio
- 4:00 – The Roland synthesizer wall. Tells a great story how he got them.
- 6:30 – We move to the computer setup – We talk about Vienna and Austria
- 8:20 – Shows off some of the equipment. Watch this!
- 8:55 – How did he decide what equipment he wanted to use for recording his music
Hans Zimmer Part 2
- Says this is the place he records everything
- 1:00 – Explains how he came up with the music of Sherlock Holmes
- 3:15 – The opening score of Holmes. Where did it come from and how did he come up with it.
- 4:40 – I mention how I wasn’t impressed with the music of Avatar but loved the music of Sherlock Holmes
- 5:55 – Talks about previewing the music at a test screening and how nervous he was
Hans Zimmer Part 3
- Inception talk – I ask about the teaser trailer and the amazing sound in it. Is that the kind of music he’s going for in the movie?
- 2:50 – How long does it take him to write a score
- 5:00 – How he’s his own worst enemy. Says he’s working on Inception right now
- Doing new Jim Brooks movie, Rango
- 5:45 – Is he doing Pirates of the Caribbean 4?