NarniaFans Interviews Dawn Treader Composer David Arnold

NarniaFans has just posted their interview with Dawn Treader composer David Arnold. In this interview Arnold talks about the process of writing for the film and coordinating with the previous film.

When asked about any of Harry Gregson-William’s themes would be used, Arnold replied:

As the story opens and end in with strong Narnian connections before voyaging into the unknown, I bookended the film with Harry’s Narnia theme. It works beautifully of course and also I play it when Aslan appears as he is the anchor both spiritually and emotionally so Harry’s music reminds us of that.It also helps as there is so much new stuff in this film to ‘hold hands’ musically with the previous two movies. I spoke about it with Harry as we are friends and he was pleased that we were including his work as often it doesn’t happen, but I am aware of the effect his music has on those who care about these films and I think it would be churlish and ignorant to dismiss it as anything other than essential. It’s very boldly stated in three key points in the movie, but once we begin the journey everything changes.

When asked about new thematic material, he said:

I have a theme for the Dawn Treader itself, which becomes a defacto home for everyone as they sail off on their journey to find their actual homes, both spiritually and actually. There is a Reepicheep theme which reflects his desire to find Aslan’s country, his sense of decency and bravery and above all his optimism for everyone, the world, the Pevensies and himself. There is a theme for the ‘mission’ of finding the missing Lords and their Swords, a ‘temptation’ theme as the children are tempted and tested one by one and of course something dark for the Green Mist which symbolises and epitomises all that is evil in this film.

Make sure to read the entire interview over at NarniaFans. It’s a great read and gives us some exciting indications of what the music for The Voyage of the Dawn Treader will be like.

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39 Responses

  1. FriendOfNarnia2 says:

    He seems to understand the story quite well. I actually found this quite encouraging. I especially like what he had to say about Reepicheep.

  2. checkers says:

    Wow. I am feeling a LOT better about the music now. 😀 He really seems to understand the spirit of Narnia, and I'm very glad that he's keeping Harry Gregson-Williams' theme. I was worried about the music with a new composer, but this is really reassuring me. 🙂

  3. Bother Eustace says:

    Yes, i found it encouraging as well. He seems to understand the essential themes better than some others in production…*ahem*

  4. Bother Eustace says:

    I am so happy to read this! What he said is almost EXACTLY what I was hoping for in this score. I love movie scores. 😀 I wanted just enough of Harry's stuff to make it familiar and connect the films, but enough new stuff to relay the feeling of voyaging into the unknown. And I love his descriptions of the different themes… I can't wait to hear them. Hoping they sound great!

  5. wolfloversk says:

    YES YES AND YES!!!!!!!!!!!

    That is pretty much exactly what I needed- someone who is able to pick up on both the spirit of the books and the spirit of the movies at the same time. They mentioned the changes, but they also mentioned the original themes that we hadn't heard much of yet. Does this mean Reep may have his little poem after all? And this shows that there may be a stronger theme regarding the journey for Aslan's country than what many of us had thought! :Dx1,000,000

  6. FriendOfNarnia2 says:

    I know! At least we know that somebody gets it!

  7. Pepper Darcy says:

    this sounds so promising, you know? Not only do we get the old themes, but we get gobs of new themes too. At least four, I think, and hopefully he'll be better at varying the themes (i.e. the way he orchestrates it). Harry had great themes but he set them up and recorded them the same way each time… it got menotenous. You can listen to The Battle from LWW and say PC lines at certain points. And maybe Howard Shore just spoiled me, but if HS can do it, David Arnold can do it. I'm SO looking forward to NEW themes instead of rehashed stuff again 🙂

    And wow, he sounds so humble, especially the part about churlish and ignorant to NOT use previous themes, and he sounds sensitive to what fans feel when they listen to Harry's music. Some of Harry's music was magical and I felt that narnia magic. I'm glad he realized that! 🙂

    We've got a sensitive director AND composer! Hurray! Sail away! Sail away! Oh… if they were going to choose Carrie Underwood… they might as well have chosen Adam Young… he's got an awesome voice 😀 and has that nonsensical fantasy feel 😀

  8. Pepper Darcy says:

    I like your point about Aslan's country. So yeah, maybe we're just not getting the big picture from what we've seen 😀

  9. FriendOfNarnia2 says:

    And he read the entire series before writing, so that he would capture the spirit of the books in the films. How awesome!

  10. DamselJillPole says:

    Great interview! I love the sound of this and I have a lot of faith in David now! Can't wait to hear it.

  11. Queen Elizabeth says:

    I'm so happy he kept the theme 🙂 It would be like Harry Potter without the theme if he didn't, it's one of those series where the movie is nothing without the music.

  12. LucyTheValiant says:

    If anything, this has brought me hope, i'm so glad that he's keeping some of harry' music, and i feel safe knowing the music is in good hands 🙂

  13. Secrets of Excalibur says:

    Adam Young! I was thinking he should do a song for VDT too! That would be so great!My best friend and I LOVE Owl City!

  14. Queen Elizabeth says:

    I was using the Harry music as an example. Narnia does not compare with Harry Potter.

  15. wolfloversk says:

    I think LucyTheValiant meant the old composer-not HP, but I agree with both of you the music is essential to the films 🙂

  16. Edson07bs says:

    WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOJUUUUUUUUUUUUUU… Harry's themes, amazing! I do really think David will make a GREAT work…

  17. WarriorOfNarnia says:

    I CAN'T WAIT!!!! DEC. 7th is ONE day after my birthday.

  18. GlimGlum says:

    Looking forward to this score and I like what David Arnold had to say. Sail on VDT! 🙂

  19. Mayor Wilkins says:

    Awesome. Sounds simply awesome. He seems to have Reep's character down to a "T." Excellent. So happy he is using elements of the original score. But I do wonder about the whole "Green Mist" theme. I was hoping to hear the White Witch battle theme (played in the first and second film) again. I love that music. Also, "Green Mist" makes me think (once again) that the Green Lady will simply be The White Witch reborn. That seems to be the direction the films are headed in. Maybe I'm wrong. We'll see.

    Anyway, this sounds very cool. I already want this soundtrack!

  20. narnian resident says:

    he sounds really professional. im very happy he kept in touch with Harry and tied in his theme. he is so right about the fact that Harry's music is very important to us, and i love that he appreciates that.
    im extremely excited to hear what this "Dawn Treader" theme will be! i was hoping it would have its own theme. and i wonder if he'll be keeping the french horn popular for Reep, like from PC. i just loved that!
    he seems to know the story very well and knows what fits and what will sound really good. i have complete confidence in him now. cant wait!

  21. Duffleglum says:

    He looks like he's having a headache. lol

  22. Duffleglum says:

    Yes! I was so happy that this guy has taken it maybe even more seriously than Harry, but at the same time respected and continued the central Narnian Theme.
    It was awesome to hear how he thinks Aslan is the anchor, and thus is given the central theme music of Narnia.

    Rock-on Arnold! in a non-literal sense…

  23. NarniaNerd says:

    Wow, I can't wait to hear his score! He has a wonderful grasp of the stories' themes. I think this will be good. At least, I hope so. 🙂

  24. Scarlet13 says:

    I feel alot better about the music now!!!

  25. Reepicheep775 says:

    That was encoraging. I can't wait to Reep's new theme. 🙂

  26. Puddlewiggle says:

    That got me excited! I loved the music from LWW and PC, but this guy seems to know what he's doing! I love it how he got the spirit of Narnia from the books, not the earlier movies. I do believe that he has the right idea about Narnia :).

  27. Queen Elizabeth says:

    Ohhh haha, sorry 🙂

  28. Queen Elizabeth says:

    Me too! 🙂 I love Reep's theme from PC, it was mysterious with a little bounce to it during the Telmarine castle raid.

  29. Clive Staples Sibelius says:

    It's nice to know that SOMEBODY read the books. It's especially encouraging since Mr. Arnold was under no pressure to do so. All he had to do for his job was watch the film and write the music. But he went Above And Beyond. So awesome and very encouraging.

  30. Sammie says:

    I hadn't realized David Arnold had written so many scores, including the "Stargate" film. I even watched and liked "The World Is Not Enough" (Denise Richards aside), the theme of which was all over the radio for awhile. I really loved his "Amazing Grace" work – it set a lot of the right tone without being intrusive.

    His respect for (1) Gregson-Williams and his work in the earlier films and (2) for the books themselves makes me very, very excited.

  31. HighQueenofNarnia says:

    Well, this must be a momentous occasion indeed if it excites a Marshwiggle. 😉

  32. Ionic Bonding Rocks says:

    I was really worried when I found out Harry wasn't doing the score for this movie, but after reading this I am very relieved and encouraged. Even if the movie isn't good, at least there will be a fantastic soundtrack!
    Hurrah for David Arnold!!!
    By the way, he mentioned that everyone was going to be tested on the island. Sounds like it won't just be Edmund. That should be very interesting. I look forward to seeing how this turns out…

  33. elanor says:

    I know. I had no idea about David Arnold before Narnia, and I love listening to movie soundtracks. As soon as my sister and I saw that the composer was changing from Harry Gregson-Williams to Dave Arnold for the Voyage, we flew in a panic to see what he had done. We stumbled on his Independence Day soundtrack and it was such a surprise (absolutely beautiful!) that we could hardly keep from jumping up and down. I have high hopes for you, Mr. Arnold!

  34. elanor says:

    Oops! On my comment below, I meant to reply to you, Sammie. Sorry!

  35. Starlily says:

    I agree. This story made me feel more hopeful about the themes of the movie. I can't wait to hear the music! 🙂

  36. Starlily says:

    Haha, yeah, that picture is funny. 🙂

  37. Aslan's Meadow says:

    He said it! 'find their actualy home'. So glad to hear that other then glumPuddle wishing it.

  38. Alambil and Tarvis says:

    *virtual hug for Mr. Arnold*

    This is exactly what I wanted to hear. 😀

  39. Clive Staples Sibelius says:

    I can't get over this, even still. I am QUITE exciting and looking forward to hearing the soundtrack.