At the Filmtracks message board, someone posted a topic asking members to choose a new composer for the major franchises. Some of the people there had some interesting choices, but I think I exhibited the most creativity and elan in picking new composers.
1. Star Trek (Mark McKenzie) - I admit that this flies in the face of one of the post's few tenets - "It can't be a composer that previously worked on the franchise."; McKenzie scored a couple of "Enterprise" episodes. - but the man can deliver all the wonder and excitement the franchise scores demand.
2. James Bond (Terence Blanchard) - One can't help but be excited at what Blanchard could cook up for a Bond movie, especially since one of his scores - the marvelous Inside Man - was, in a roundabout way, compared to a Bond score.
3. The Fast and the Furious (Joel McNeely) - "One last ride", my eye. Based this choice solely on Terminal Velocity. Listen to "Cadillac Freefall" and tell me he wouldn't crush this franchise.
4. Star Wars (Christopher Gordon) - Williams is this franchise, no doubt, but if something happened to him, God forbid, Gordon (Daybreakers) would be truly amazing. Search your feelings. You know this to be true.
5. Transformers (Graeme Revell) - I really believe that Revell could hearken back to his mid-90s heyday on these movies, like Street Fighter, Power Rangers...hey, these are all kid-centric properties blown up into ridiculous movies. Weird that I just now got that.
6. Man of Steel (John Debney) - Admittedly not much of a voice, but Debney has a way with an orchestra that these movies desperately need.
7. Spider-Man (Elliot Goldenthal) - He's been away for too long. I hope that his accident didn't lay him too low to take on a project like this. Plus, these films seem to be cut from the same cloth as the Schumacher Batman movies, so there's that.
8. X-Men (Rolfe Kent) - Because if I don't give him a chance to score a comic book movie, who the fudge will? (Ottman could use some time in the corner after Days of Future Past.)
9. Iron Man (Kevin Manthei) - He's made a foray into superheroing (Justice League: the New Frontier) that, I think, would make him a natural for this.
10. Thor (Debbie Wiseman) - An exciting musical journey as told through orchestra. Miss Wiseman can get it done. (If you don't have Arsene Lupin, how can you even say that you like music?)
11. Captain America (David Newman) - Newman's talents would've done wonders for these movies; just imagine the old-fashioned heroics of The First Avenger (but don't get it twisted; I liked Silvestri's score) giving way to the serious thrills of The Winter Soldier.
12. The Avengers (Richard Band) - Kind of like what I said in #8, except he doesn't even have quirky comedies to fall back on. Family loyalty is a commendable thing...unless you're a talented composer and your brother is Charles Band.
13. The Hunger Games (Hummie Mann) - I said this at FSM's message board a long time ago and it still stands: 'It's shameful that Mann didn't (doesn't?) have as big a career as his scores for the Mel Brooks movies would warrant'. Besides, he could use a big franchise on which to stretch his legs...or any movie, for that matter.
14. Guardians of the Galaxy (Marc Shaiman) - This choice is so outside the realm of conceivability that it has to happen sooner or later. Granted, given his Broadway shows and friendship with Rob Reiner, he's not exactly hurting for work, but still...what if?
15. The Maze Runner (Theodore Shapiro) - Cards on the table, all I know of Shapiro are his comedy scores, but there's more than enough here to suggest a strong talent for drama ("The Naughty Purse" from Dinner for Schmucks) and action (several cues from Diary of a Wimpy Kid...seriously).
16. Halloween (Jeff Grace) - I Sell the Dead points toward an incredible gift for horror. (I could care less about the movies, but I think Grace could elevate them.)
17. Jurassic World (Robert Folk) - Folk has given his all to so many movies (okay, most of them are stupid comedies), and the music has been consistently fantastic. Just let him do this. Don't we owe him at least one good dinosaur movie?
18. Planet of the Apes (Carter Burwell) - The music for these movies is gonna require a lot of percussion. Burwell's scores for Conspiracy Theory and The Jackal show that he can nail it.
19. Fifty Shades of Grey (Brian Tyler) - Dude needs a break from action movies and I'm sure he'd tell you so himself.
20. Avatar (Cliff Eidelman) - Lush scenery and adventure. Remember when Eidelman was the go-to guy for this (Star Trek VI, Christopher Columbus)?
What do you think?