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Oscar nominations: Hans Zimmer on the sonic dreamscape of 'Inception' [updated]

January 25, 2011 |  1:14 pm


Hans Zimmer was working all night on music for “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides” and he came to the phone croaky and a bit foggy to chat about his nomination for "Inception.” “I forgot this is what was happening this morning,” Zimmer said of the nominations. “But it’s very nice news.”

That’s the unstirred sound of a nine-time nominee –- Zimmer is pleased certainly, but he wasn’t (willingly) losing any sleep over the nominations for the 83rd Academy Awards. “Each one is special because they are singular. They’re always about a completely new piece of work,” said Zimmer, who won his only Oscar for “The Lion King.” [Updated: An earlier version of this post stated that Zimmer won his Oscar for "Beauty and the Beast."]

Zimmer said for “Inception” his musical goal was to speak to emotion in a film driven by dream logic. In the complicated gears of the dream heist movie, Zimmer saw his assignment as one of propelling the audience forward, not grabbing them by the lapels to signal to the mood of the moment.

“It’s a very unusual film and some viewers will be a little confused by it and the music should be opening should set up you to feel what’s coming as opposed to telling you what to feel,” Zimmer said. “The music is a river. It’s like you’re in a little boat and you’re on the river and you trust the river to take you somewhere.”

-- Geoff Boucher


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Photo: Leonardo DiCaprio in "Inception" Credit: Warner Bros.