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Interview: ELIA CMIRAL (Battlefield Earth, Ronin, Pulse)

 
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 12, 2006 11:10 am   Post subject: Interview: ELIA CMIRAL (Battlefield Earth, Ronin, Pulse) Reply with quote


We have an opportunity to interview composer ELIA CMIRAL, who did the score for Wes Craven’s “Pulse”, which premiered Aug. 11th. This is Cmiral's second collaboration with Craven, having scored "Wes Craven Presents: They" in 2002. For the score, Los Angeles-based Cmiral conducted seventy minutes of score with a sixty piece orchestra located in his native Czech Republic.

Please post your questions below. If there is enough interest, we’ll go forward with the interview.

A little background information for you:

(Los Angeles, CA) Composer Elia Cmiral scores "Pulse" for director Jim Sonzero and The Weinstein Company/Dimension Films. Inspired by a popular Japanese film, the Wes Craven-penned thriller tells the story of young computer hackers who channel a mysterious signal that opens a doorway to another world, full of forces looking for a portal to cross over in order to wreak havoc. Starring a hot young cast that includes Kristen Bell ("Veronica Mars"), Ian Somerhalder ("Lost") and Christina Milian ("Love Don't Cost a Thing"), the film opens August 11. This is Cmiral's second collaboration with Craven, having scored "Wes Craven Presents: They" in 2002.

For "Pulse," Cmiral crafted a contemporary electronica/modern orchestral score. Using an ISDN connection from his home in Los Angeles, he conducted seventy minutes of score with a sixty piece orchestra located in his native Czech Republic. With three programmers to handle the huge amount of sound design and five orchestrators, he used extensive synths and percussion programming, a programmed choir and live voices including his own. "The work was intense," he says, "(director) Jim Sonzero made me explore every possible or impossible musical and sonic corner."

Born in Czechoslovakia, Elia Cmiral quickly established himself as one of Europe's leading young composers after graduating from the prestigious Prague Music Conservatory. He wrote scores for several European films and three ballets before coming to the United States to attend USC's famous Film Scoring Program, after which he was hired to produce tango-based music for "Apartment Zero," composing a now-classic full length score in a scant ten days. By the mid-1990s, Cmiral had garnered a reputation with Hollywood executives, and after scoring the successful "Nash Bridges" television series, he was selected to score John Frankenheimer's suspense thriller "Ronin," starring Robert DeNiro. Following the success of "Ronin," Elia has continued to provide highly original and evocative scores for major Hollywood studios as well as independent filmmakers, including "Stigmata," "Battlefield Earth," "Bones" and "Species 3."

This year, in addition to "Pulse," Cmiral scored the dark drama "Journey to the End of the Night," directed by Eric Eason for Millennium Films, which premiered at the 2006 Tribeca Film Festival in New York.
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2006 2:13 am   Post subject: Re: Interview: ELIA CMIRAL (Battlefield Earth, Ronin, Pulse Reply with quote


Wow, great!

I also found a short interview about the Ronin soundtrack on soundtrack.net

Twopop wrote:
Using an ISDN connection from his home in Los Angeles, he conducted seventy minutes of score with a sixty piece orchestra located in his native Czech Republic.


I find this part impressive!

Question What were the problems you encountered while 'remotely' conducting the orchestra and how did you solve them?

Other questions:

Question You already composed 'They' for Wes Craven. How did you get in contact / get the job for 'Pulse'?

Question Will you continue to compose music for small / independent films?
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 27, 2006 9:42 pm   Post subject: Reply with quote


When did you first realize that being a film composer was the career for you?

What got you interested in using a lot of electronic music in your scores?

What's your creative process when working on a film score? Could you describe what you went through on Pulse?

Some reviewers have criticized the remote conducting on Pulse because it could become the norm on projects trying to save time and money. In your view, what were some of the advantages and tradeoffs of this approach?

Do you have a personal affinity for dissonant sounds or do you like to use them because they fit the types of films that you've scored?

I liked the duduk-led theme in Ronin and the trumpet theme and action scoring in Battlefield Earth. I'm wondering why you've kind of moved away from major themes in your works to more sonic manipulation/textures?

Could you describe some mentors or people that inspired you to become a better composer? Any composers that you really admire?

Now that you've done several horror films, including They, Wrong Turn, and Pulse, are you looking for a change of pace? What kind of films would you be interested in scoring in the future?
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2006 9:28 pm   Post subject: Reply with quote


Twopop, could you let us know when each of these interview guides have been sent out? I added a few more questions but think it might be too late.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 20, 2006 12:50 am   Post subject: Reply with quote


Zir, only Lennertz & Armstrong have been sent. I'd like to finalize all the others by the end of Wed., Sep 20th.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2006 11:15 am   Post subject: Reply with quote


Thank you, Alchemist.
And Zir, too - as always. Very Happy


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