I didn’t grow up reading Superman comic books and I’ve never seen an episode of Smallville. My Superman universe begins with Marlon Brando and ends with Clark Kent wiping the counter with a bully at a greasy Metropolis diner. (That’s right: The Richard Pryor One and The Quest for Peace never happened.) And
when the kids are sleeping and I run around my family room pretending my bath towel is a cape when I think of Superman soaring through the sky, I hear John Williams in my head. His Superman score is so buoyant and heroic that it’s difficult to picture The Man of Steel without it pulsing in the background. When director Bryan Singer attempted to literally recreate the look and feel of those first two Supe films for 2006’s Superman Returns, there was no way he could do so without incorporating Williams’ stirring anthem.
Now that Zack Snyder has been assigned to reinvent the Superman legend — with the guidance of Batman’s savior, Christopher Nolan — it’s understandable that Williams’ theme music must go. According to NBC-San Diego, Hans Zimmer, the maestro behind Gladiator, Inception, and the Nolan Batman films, will compose the new score for Snyder’s superhero. I’m a huge fan of both artists: Where Williams’ best work makes you swoon in its supreme elegance, Zimmer’s rousing anthems evoke the adrenaline of a battlefield charge. Snyder’s new-look Superman — moodier? grittier? — might still have an “S” on his chest, but he’ll be flying to a new tune. I’m as interested in hearing the new Superman as I am in seeing him.
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