If you’ve seen DreamWorks Animation’s How to Train Your Dragon, you know that not only is it an incredible film, but the entire feature is elevated by a truly magnificent score from composer John Powell. He imbues the compassionate story with a genuine sense of wonder and emotion, and Powell resumes his composing duties on the upcoming sequel How to Train Your Dragon 2 to fantastic results. I recently got the opportunity to speak with Powell for an extended conversation in anticipation of the release of How to Train Your Dragon 2 on June 13th and the soundtrack, which is available now, and we covered a wide range of topics.
During the interview, Powell discussed his approach to scoring the follow-up without repeating himself, working with Sigur Rós frontman Jónsi to craft original songs for the movie, whether the knowledge of another sequel (or sequels) impacted his work, looking back over his career, collaborating with Hans Zimmer, how working in animation differs to live-action, his thoughts on the state of film and TV scoring today, the evolution of DreamWorks Animation, his decision to take a break, and much more. If you’re at all interested in the world and process of film scoring, Powell is full of great insights. Read on after the jump.