Film critic Roger Ebert answers the following question in his “Movie Answer Man” column:
Q: While watching the most recent trailer for Lord of The Rings: The Two Towers, I immediately recognized the music as the excellent score from Requiem for a Dream. I am familiar with the practice of recycling music for trailers–I can’t count the number of times I have heard the score from “Aliens”–but why bother, with a sequel to a hugely successful movie with a ready-made score? If it was slapped on for time’s sake, I might understand, but the version I heard on the trailer sounds re-orchestrated and tweaked, as if specifically for LOTR. Granted, the urgency and sadness of the music fit the tone of the trailer perfectly, but did the studio think the existing score from the first Rings film not moving enough?
A: You have good ears. Yes, the Requiem score was used, and yes, it was re-orchestrated. I contacted the AM’s expert source David Bondelevich, award-winning music editor and lecturer at the University of Southern California. He at first assumed that “but re-scoring it would be prohibitively expensive,” but his contact at the Ant Farm, which created the trailer, said otherwise.
Nathan D. Duvall, music producer at the Ant Farm, explained, “In many cases a trailer is created in two days and there isn’t enough time to create original music. With Two Towers, the editor who cut the trailer fell in love with the Requiem score but found that it didn’t quite adhere to the typical trailer music formula. To solve this we created a larger orchestration that arched to a big resolution. Requiem is a more intimate feature yet it has a haunting melody that easily translates to a more broad feature in Two Towers. The Rings score is well placed in the first minute of the Two Towers trailer but the editor found that she needed something different since Towers is a different act in the trilogy. Once you have introduced the known characters and reminded the audience of their separate journeys we needed to depart from the old score. Howard Shore had not yet completed his score for Two Towers by the time we finished our trailer so we couldn’t use any of the new music. As far as creative decisions go, our partner here at the Ant Farm who holds the Rings account, Barbara Glazer, supported our attempt with the revised Requiem theme. And all creative decisions are finally approved by [LOTR director] Peter Jackson.”
To read more of Roger Ebert’s column, please click on the link below.