‘The Magnificent Seven’ Composer Simon Franglen on Completing James Horner’s Themes

     5 days ago

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When composer James Horner tragically died last year, it was a huge blow to the movie industry. The two-time Oscar-winning composer was responsible for creating many iconic pieces of film music ranging from Titanic to Braveheart to A Beautiful Mind along with too many others to mention here. Look over his full resume and be amazed. However, even though he died before filming began on Antoine Fuqua’s The Magnificent Seven, you’ll notice he’s listed as doing the music along with Simon Franglen. The reason, as you can watch Franglen explain in the interview above, is Horner was going to be very busy and he decided to get a jump on Magnificent Seven by writing some of the themes of the film based on just reading the screenplay. After Horner died, Franglen, along with a few others, decided to hire an orchestra and fleshed out the music to present it to Fuqua as the last thing Horner had composed. After hearing the music, Fuqua asked Franglen to do the music for the film, and he balanced incorporating Horner’s themes with the additional music he had to compose.

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Image via Sony

Shortly after seeing the film at the Toronto International Film Festival, I sat down with Composer Simon Franglen for an extended interview. He talked about his relationship with James Horner, what was it like working with Fuqua and writing music during the editing process, how they decided to incorporate Elmer Bernstein’s original iconic score into the remake, how he got involved in Terrence Malick’s Voyage of Time, and so much more. Check out what he had to say above and below you’ll find a list of everything we talked about.


Simon Franglen:

  • Talks about why James Horner got a jump on writing theme’s for The Magnificent Seven.
  • What happened after James died and why they decided to press on with his work?
  • 3:35 – His reaction to the finished film.
  • 4:40 – What was it like working with Antoine Fuqua and writing music during the editing process? Talks about how the music changed.
  • 7:45 – Who does he show his music to while he is writing?
  • 9:15 – Talks about Elmer Bernstein’s original iconic score and how they decided to incorporate it into the remake.
  • 12:55 – How did the theme’s that James Horner originally wrote compare to the finished versions.
  • 14:00 – Talks about how he got involved in Terrence Malick’s Voyage of Time.
  • 16:15 – When did he get involved in the film?
  • 17:45 – On how Voyage of Time is pure art.
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Image via Sony Pictures

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