Cue the trumpets! Not like this a surprise, but the maestro of all maestros John Williams will return to conduct the score for Star Wars episode 9.
He has indicated his desire to return for J.J. Abrams Episode IX and complete the circle – a trilogy of trilogies – that fans like myself never believed would ever happen.
Speaking with Variety, he stated very simply
“I would very much like to complete that.”
When Variety asked if he planned on retiring, the 85-year old says
“I don’t think you can retire from writing,” Williams said. “I feel very lucky, and the work that I do doesn’t depend on much. If your vision’s still good, and your hands — I have no arthritis in my hands and I play the piano very easily — I don’t think there’s any reason to deprive oneself of the fun of working. Music is so rewarding.”
Variety also compiled this list of the Maestro’s Oscar resume.
Williams is the second most-nominated person in Oscar history behind Walt Disney (Disney had 59, Williams has 50 to date) and is the most-nominated living individual.
Williams’ first Oscar nomination was for one of the most reviled movies of the 1960s: Adapting the songs of his friend Andre Previn into an orchestral score for “Valley of the Dolls” (1967), based on Jacqueline Susann’s tawdry best-seller.
His first Oscar was not for original music, but rather for adapting the Broadway hit “Fiddler on the Roof” into an orchestral score for Norman Jewison’s 1971 film version.
Forty-seven of his 107 films have been nominated for either song, score or adaptation score. That’s an unprecedented 44% of the total.
It’s been 24 years since Williams last won (for “Schindler’s List”). He has been nominated 19 more times since then.
Sixteen of Williams’ 50 nominations are for Steven Spielberg films (and three won: “Jaws,” “E.T.” and “Schindler’s List”).
Four of the seven “Star Wars” films were nominated for their Williams scores (and the original won in 1977). None of the prequels was nominated. Two of his three “Harry Potter” films were nominated, as were three of the four “Indiana Jones” scores.
Five of Williams’ nominations are for original songs and one, “Somewhere in My Memory” from “Home Alone,” has gone on to become a standard.
Williams has been music director of the Academy Awards three times: in 1973, 1976 and 2002.