John Williams is one of the most renowned film composers in history. He has penned unforgettable scores for Star Wars, the Indiana Jones series, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, Jaws, Superman, and countless other films. Fans flock to his many concerts, and with forty-eight Academy Award nominations as of 2013, he is the second-most Oscar-nominated person after Walt Disney. Yet despite such critical acclaim and prestige, this is the first book in English on Williams's work and career.
Combining accessible writing with thorough scholarship, and rigorous historical accounts with insightful readings, John Williams's Film Music explores why Williams is so important to the history of film music. Beginning with an overview of music from Hollywood's Golden Age (1933-58), Emilio Audissino traces the turning points of Williams's career and articulates how he revived the classical Hollywood musical style. This book charts each landmark of this musical restoration, with special attention to the scores for Jaws and Star Wars, Williams's work as conductor of the Boston Pops Orchestra, and a full film/music analysis of Raiders of the Lost Ark. The result is a precise, enlightening definition of Williams's "neoclassicism" and a grounded demonstration of his lasting importance, for both his compositions and his historical role in restoring part of the Hollywood tradition.
A film scholar and a film musicologist, Emilio Audissino (University of Southampton) holds one PhD in History of Visual and Performing Arts from the University of Pisa, Italy, and one PhD in Film Studies from the University of Southampton, UK. He specialises in Hollywood and Italian cinema, and his interests are film analysis, film style and technique, comedy, horror, and film sound and music. His book Film/Music Analysis. A Film Studies Approach (Palgrave MacMillan, 2017) concerns a method to analyse music in films that blends Neoformalism and Gestalt Psychology. Dr Audissino is the author of the monograph John Williams's Film Music: 'Jaws', 'Star Wars', 'Raiders of the Lost Ark' and the Return of the Classical Hollywood Music Style (University of Wisconsin Press, 2014), the first book-length study in English on the composer, and the editor of the collection of essays John Williams. Music for Films, Television and the Concert Stage (Brepols, 2018).