When the thriller The Woman in the Window hits theaters next year, it’ll be without an original score by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross. The Oscar-winning The Social Network and Watchmen composers were originally hired to craft a score for the bestseller adaptation, which stars Amy Adams as an agoraphobic woman who witnesses a crime across the street and subsequently begins to question what she actually saw. Joe Wright—the bold filmmaker behind Pride and Prejudice, Atonement, and Darkest Hour—directed the film, but it apparently changed enough in post-production to necessitate a new score.
Speaking with Revolver, Reznor says he and Ross originally wrote an “avant-garde” score for the movie, but after the studio decided it needed reshoots, they bowed out:
The film “underwent a transformation after some testing audiences,” according to Reznor, and so the two decided to “bow out.” “There’s no animosity on our end,” he added. “It’s frustrating when you did that much work and it’s gone. And we were proud — and they were proud — of the movie that it was.”
The Woman in the Window was originally made by Fox and set for release this past fall, but after Fox was bought by Disney, the new powers-that-be decided the film needed some work. Screenwriter Tracy Letts previously expressed his displeasure at the changes, saying that everyone was happy with the film until test audiences didn’t like it. So it’ll be interesting to see if Disney-Fox has neutered Wright’s film, or if the changes are ultimately for the better.
But The Woman in the Window wasn’t the only disappointment for Reznor and Ross, as Reznor got frank about their work on Bird Box in the same interview, noting that their work on the Netflix movie was a waste of time:
“When we got immersed in it, it felt like some people were phoning it in,” Reznor said of the experience of working on the film. “And you’re stuck with a film editor who had real bad taste. That’s kind of our barricade to getting stuff in the film. And the final icing on the shit cake was we were on tour when they mixed it. And they mixed the music so low, you couldn’t hear it anyway. So it was like, that was a …” He laughed. “That was a fucking waste of time. Then we thought, no one’s going to see this fucking movie. And, of course, it’s the hugest movie ever in Netflix.”
Indeed, I too had been puzzled as to why Reznor and Ross lent their talents to such a subpar film, but now it all kind of makes sense.
Regardless, Reznor and Ross just turned in one of the best scores of the year with their work on HBO’s Watchmen and are currently immersed in working on David Fincher’s next movie Mank, so the future is bright.