Oscars 2016: Best Original Score

This year’s nominees for Best Original Score include first-timers and fifty-timers.



Thomas Newman, Bridge of Spies

This sounds an awful lot like Newman’s score to The Shawshank Redemption if you ask me. Newman has been nominated thirteen times and has never won an Oscar.



Carter Burwell, Carol

I was surprised to learn that Burwell (Raising Arizona, Fargo, In Bruges) has never been nominated before.


Ennio Morricone, The Hateful Eight

He is probably the most influential living film composer, and he has never won. They gave him an Honorary Oscar in 2006.

Jóhann Jóhannsson, Sicario

He was nominated last year for his lovely score for The Theory of Everything, which is a world away from Sicario. Those cello notes in the Juarez convoy scene still haunt me.


John Williams, Star Wars: The Force Awakens

In all, Williams has been nominated for an Oscar a staggering 50 times. He has taken home the award five times (Fiddler on the Roof, Jaws, Star Wars, E.T., Schindler’s List). Pretty much Spielberg’s favourite composer, so I have no idea why he hired Thomas Newman for Bridge of Spies.


5 thoughts on “Oscars 2016: Best Original Score

  1. I confess that I never think that much about scores, despite recognising most of the familiar themes when I hear them. The Godfather always springs to mind as very effective, and I like the use of songs in soundtracks, as in Tarantino’s films Jackie Brown, and Reservoir Dogs.
    As for who gets the Oscar, I cannot honestly say I am worried about that.
    Cheers mate, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I still haven’t seen The Hateful Eight, but I do generally like Morricone. I’m with you on Jóhannsson, and the score for Carol is just lovely. i don’t know how the Academy judges: are people sent copies of the score to assess the music on it own, or do they have to judge the music only as it’s used in the film?

      I think it’s interesting that although Mad Max has received a ton of awards, the music was not nominated. I love the film and the music in it, but I listened to the album, and two hours of intense drumming and squealing strings and brass without the matching visuals is a bit much … it’s a rather monotonous score, even though it has a couple of amazing tracks.


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