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FireflyGreg Edmonson - About Firefly Soundtrack - Buffy-online.net Interview
Friday 27 January 2006, by Webmaster
You all know the Score of Firefly!!! let’s read what the creator of this amazing Score has to tell us about his work on Firefly ;)
Q. The score of Firefly shows some Asian- and some Western- elements... Was it very difficult to combine them?
A. No not really, in fact it was not only easy but also quite fun to do. You can credit Joss, who didn’t want to just do a “paint by the numbers” TV score. And the picture/story led you in that direction anyway - since this new world was a “cultural melting pot” then the music was free to be the same.
Q. Which style do you like more- the Asian- or the Western style??
A. No real favorite. Early on Fox put the damper on any western element so that was never explored in the way that it might have been. But I do love Asian influences so we just leaned in that direction. To me, one of the great joys of “Firefly” was that it could be anything at any given time. This universe was so diverse that just about any musical style or combination could work depending on the specific scene.
Q. Are you annoyed with David Newman, who made the Score of Serenity?
A. If you mean “was it a loss for me” - of course it was. I was/am so in love with “Firefly” that my heart wanted to stay connected. But I work in a industry where many (if not most) decisions just don’t go your way. You don’t personalize it. David is a familiar face to the movie studios, I am not - there you have it. I think that the best way for me to look at it is this way- I am so very happy and honored to have done the show and my experiences with Joss and everyone involved with the show were so positive that I just let my thoughts go in that direction.
Q. Is there any piece of music in Serenity that you would have done differently?
A. Hmmm (laughing)... let me dodge this one by saying this. Any composer would do “everything” a little different because styles are so unique to each individual person. Now “how” different is the interesting question to consider. Would Joss write an episode different from Tim Minear? Sure they are two different people. But both are magnificent!!
Q. If there is a sequel of Serenity, would like to be a part of it?
A. How’s this---“in a heartbeat”-“in the blink of an eye”!!
Q. If there was any film you would like to score, which one would it be?
A. Boy, so many wonderful films to choose from-I like so many films for so many different reasons. Some have wonderful relationships that pull the music in an emotional direction. Some are so visually stunning that you just want to be a part of the visceral experience. I really can’t narrow it down to just one. One thing that I really enjoy scoring is complex emotional ground, where people “say one thing but mean another” - or they can’t really speak their true feelings and the music can speak for them. This requires “great writing” and “great acting” to work so that the music isn’t leading you by the nose. And “Firefly” was just loaded with these moments. As far as films go, I find that I will always watch “The Shawshank Redemption” even though I have seen it a million times.
Q. Do you have any Idols?
A. You know at this point in my life I am just happy being myself. Even though I am not a Hollywood “big fish”, I would not change places with anyone else. I have been quite fortunate and really my life is pretty damn good. It is very easy in this town (Los Angeles) to always look at people who have more than you do and feel slighted somehow. To me (at least) people are more important than careers. When we are all old and sitting on the front porch, nobody is going to care who did what project. This doesn’t mean that careers are not important, they are--- just not as important as relationships and people’s lives. That being said career wise if I could choose, I would choose to do the projects that Thomas Newman gets to do.
Q. Do you have any Idols of Firefly?
A. Well one of the great strengths of the show was that you had 9 main characters and every single one of them was spectacular. I can’t visualize any other actors in any of the roles. These actors so owned these roles and so brought the characters to life, that I wept when the last scene was scored because I wouldn’t have them to write music for the next week. I miss them still.
Q. What do you think?? Why wasn’t Firefly as successful as it was expected?
A. This could be quite long but I will be brief. I believe that Fox never really “got” the show. They did not air the pilot episode until the very, very end. With 9 new main characters, you really needed that episode to let you know “who” these people were and “why” they were all together. Also the 8p.m. time slot was the “kiss of death” for this show. This was an adult show-not another car chase-no brainer. This was a show with complex moral ambiguity and difficult emotional terrain. Not good fodder for the Friday nite viewing audience (read between the lines here). This was a 10p.m. show and Fox doesn’t even have a 10p.m. slot. Why they picked it up if they didn’t like it - and then insulted Joss by treating it with such disrespect, you would have to ask the executives at the time.
Q. Which episode was it most difficult to score?
A. No “one” episode stands out as more difficult than another. They were just all a little different-not harder or easier.
Q. Which episode is your favorite?
A. Hmmmmmm.... a little like asking which child you love the best (lol). “Out of Gas” and the pilot (“Serenity”) were both great joys to do. But when I think back they were all a joy to do. Sorry to be vague but it is the truth. Writing the funeral scene at the end of “The Message” was very rewarding.
Q. What’s your favorite movie or TV score?
A. Too many wonderful choices-again I like so many different things for so many different reasons.... oh well (my bad).
Q. Do you have any good intentions for the New Year?
A. Yes “Firefly” did indeed light a “fire in my belly” and I am actively looking for projects that are as fun to do and are as inspirational to write music for. I learned so much working on that show and I’m ready to continue the journey! I have made some changes in my management team and I am looking forward to the New Year with great anticipation.