ECLIPSE NEWS – An interview with Alex Patsavas aka the wonder genius behind Twilight’s music & The Twilight Soundtracks DVD
We get to hear from Alex Patsavas, the person who is solely in-charge in finding and compiling the most extraordinary music & bands that we otherwise would have not heard of if we didn’t know the Twilight movies.
Thanks to Dose.ca for this GREAT interview!
Only the most try-hard of Twihards remember the exact rules of vampire baseball. But you might recall hearing Muse’s “Supermassive Black Hole” as the Cullen family stepped up to the plate in the first installment of the Twilight Saga. But then, maybe that’s not your favourite Twilight musical moment (scenes involving goofy baseball shirts so infrequently are). Maybe you’re more into swooning along to Iron & Wine’s “Flightless Bird” as Edward (Robert Pattinson) and Bella (Kristen Stewart) slow-dance at their school prom (Twilight). Or gasping over Bella’s near-death visions of Edward as Grizzly Bear’s “Slow Life” burbles up from the watery depths (New Moon). Whatever your favourite Twilight track is, though, Alexandra Patsavas had a part in it.
Patsavas, who’s curated soundtracks for The O.C., Gossip Girl, Mad Men and Grey’s Anatomy, has served as music supervisor on all three Twilight movies — and she’ll be the “music lady” on the two remaining Breaking Dawn flicks, as well, she says. It’s a job that requires her to select and supervise all the music that appears on the movies’ soundtracks, collections that have defined a moody, Pitchfork-approved ambience for the popular romance series — and that have sold as crazy as, well, anything Twilight related. (Two of the three soundtracks thus far — Twilight and New Moon — debuted at No. 1 on the American album chart.)
Dose.ca: Could you tell me how you go about putting together music for a Twilight soundtrack? When does work begin?
Alexandra Patsavas: The work begins once the supervisor is hired and the script is distributed. We [the director, the producers and later, the artists] spend a lot of time during production while the movie’s being shot just starting to talk about music, starting to have a conversation about tone and feel, but the real work begins after the movie is shot so we can start to pair music with footage.
Dose.ca: Is it a different process working on a Twilight movie than any other project you’ve done?
Patsavas: It’s been an incredible process. Of course there’s been three Twilight movies that have been released and a great deal of interest from some pretty particular artists and that’s been really a wonderful experience. And also we’ve had many bands come into the cutting room and really work directly with the director to create music for these movies. Beck came in the cutting room and Lykke Li and Grizzly Bear, Mute Math — so we’ve had quite a few bands really tailoring music for the movies. Hayley Williams, as well, from Paramore.
Dose.ca: How unusual is that?
Patsavas: You know, I think it is pretty unusual unless it’s a movie about musicians or bands, in which case it’s a whole different animal. It’s pretty unusual to have so many bands creating signature pieces for a project.
Dose.ca: What do you keep in mind when selecting songs for the movies, apart from what Meyer has written in the books. What are the things you’re thinking of?
Patsavas: I think that music really resonates with fans when it enhances the emotions in the scene and the acting, so I think more than anything we’re trying to make — to make the score and the songs seamless. To make sure all the songs feel like Twilight songs. And tell a story to the audience. … I think definitely we’re always thinking about Bella and Edward and Jacob and just about the atmosphere of Twilight itself. There are characters and then there is the character of Twilight. … I think the music has to evoke, you know, it’s got an indie feel, it has a smart lyric, it has a memorable hook. Of course, over the three movies we have sourced many different kinds of scenes — love scenes and love-lost scenes, and fight scenes, but I think there’s a certain through-line.
Dose.ca: The indie feel you mention — definitely the last three soundtracks have really embraced indie acts. Why has that been the sound of Twilight?
Patsavas: Well, certainly Stephenie Meyer loves indie music and it does seem to fit the material. It’s what the directors love and if we have — we’ve had a couple of unsigned bands on the soundtracks as well the greatest artists of our time right now. …We’ve had the great, good fortune of having a lot of submissions, of having a lot of interest from the music community. And these are the songs and the feel that fit the best.
Its an interesting read and there’s more over at Dose.ca.
And oh! Check this out! We have not heard of it until now but its calling us to own it!
The Twilight Saga Soundtracks Volume 1, a collection of music videos and never-before-seen live performances of songs included on the three Twilight Saga soundtracks, arrives in stores Dec. 4.
We’re not sure yet if this is coming to Singapore – we’ll give you a heads up if we hear about it!