OPPENHEIMER Soundtrack Released Today

The album - a deluxe three-album set pressed both in black & in an exclusive cloudy orange color – and the CD, is available for presale now.

By: Jul. 21, 2023
OPPENHEIMER Soundtrack Released Today
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Back Lot Music announces the release of Universal Pictures' Oppenheimer Original Motion Picture Soundtrack, a new film by Christopher Nolan with music by Grammy, Emmy, and Academy Award winning composer Ludwig Göransson.

The film, an epic thriller that thrusts audiences into the pulse-pounding paradox of the enigmatic man who must risk destroying the world in order to save it, hits theaters nationwide TODAY in North America, and the album is available everywhere digital music is sold and streamed.

Mondo Music, in partnership with Universal Pictures, is proud to present the score on vinyl and on compact disc. The album - a deluxe three-album set pressed both in black & in an exclusive cloudy orange color – and the CD, is available for presale now here.

To create the score for Oppenheimer, Christopher Nolan turned again to Oscar-winning composer Ludwig Göransson (Black Panther films), who had written the music for Tenet. “Ludwig’s work on the film is both deeply personal and historically expansive,” Nolan says.

“It achieves the effect of building out an emotional world to accompany the visual world that production designer Ruth De Jong designed and director of photography Hoyte van Hoytema shot, and it draws the audience into the emotional dilemmas of the characters and their interactions with the vast geopolitical situations that they’re confronting.” 

Nolan says he had no preconceptions about the music for the film, but he did offer Göransson an idea for a starting point. “I suggested he base the score on the violin,” Nolan says. “There’s something about the violin to me that seemed very apt to Oppenheimer. The tuning is precarious and totally at the mercy of the playing and emotion of the player. It can be very beautiful one moment and turn frightening or sour instantly. So, there’s a tension—a neuroses—to the sound that I think fits the highly strung intellect and emotion of Robert Oppenheimer.” 

Göransson, inspired by Nolan’s suggestion and the vivid imagery he witnessed during the early stages of pre-production, embarked on a creative exploration, harnessing the expressive potential of the violin. Driven by an unwavering desire to capture the delicate intersection between beauty and dread, Göransson’s creative endeavors manifested in an array of captivating experiments. 

Techniques such as the incorporation of microtonal glissandos were deftly employed to expand the sonic palette, infusing the music with an ethereal quality. Collaborating with esteemed musicians from the Hollywood Studio Orchestra, Göransson began shaping Oppenheimer’s musical world with an intimate solo violin performance, capturing the essence of the character.

As the story evolved, the ensemble gradually expanded to include a quartet, octet, and ultimately a large ensemble of strings and brass. This progressive orchestration reflected the deepening complexity of Oppenheimer’s journey, enriching the musical tapestry with each new addition.

“We embarked on a mission to create a score that could authentically convey the intricate inner world and journey of Oppenheimer,” Ludwig states. “With the violin serving as the emotional core of the music alongside string ensembles, an impressive display of brass and nuclear synths underpinning the impending doom that was to come, the score swiftly transcends from a personal journey to a grandiose and almost operatic spectacle, oscillating between realms of hope and despair.

Working with an exceptionally talented group of musicians, we were able to capture nuanced performances that would add another dimension to the breathtaking visual world and performances of Oppenheimer, forging what we hope will be a transportive experience for the audience.

I am deeply grateful to my remarkable and devoted team, who went above and beyond to bring the music to life, and I would like to thank Christopher Nolan for his unwavering commitment to pushing the limits of what is achievable in film and music. I am thrilled to share Oppenheimer with audiences around the world and look forward to the renewed interest and dialogue it sparks.”

ABOUT LUDWIG GÖRANSSON

Ludwig Göransson has earned extensive global recognition in both the recording and motion picture industries as a sought-out composer and musical collaborator, having received an Academy Award, two Emmy Awards, three Grammy Awards, amongst other nominations.  

Beyond these accomplishments, Göransson stands out in his field as an artist who accepts the responsibilities of his craft. By immersing himself in the traditions and musical cultures of those his music represents with a curious and collaborative spirit, he has managed to bridge and reflect worlds honestly and vividly.

Treating each score as an opportunity to connect with and learn from others, approaching projects with curiosity, and embracing a broad spectrum of sounds and styles are just a few of his creative trademarks.  

While pursuing his master’s degree in film scoring at USC, Göransson first met another longtime collaborator, writer and director Ryan Coogler, when he scored his short film, Locks. Over the next nine years, Göransson would score all three of Coogler’s feature films.

Coogler’s diverse filmography has allowed Göransson to showcase his range as a composer: combining understated melodies with found Oakland sounds for Fruitvale Station, hyping up audiences for Creed, and weaving a wholly unique sonic fabric for Black Panther that embodies traditional African music, hip hop and Western Orchestra.

His score for Black Panther earned Göransson multiple awards and nominations, including a Golden Globe nomination, a Grammy Award for Best Score Soundtrack, and the Academy Award for Best Original Score.  

He returned to compose the score (and produce and co-write the soundtrack album) for the film’s sequel, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, featuring the critically acclaimed song “Lift Me Up,” for which he (alongside Rihanna, Tems and Ryan Coogler) earned a 2023 Academy Award  nomination for “Best Original Song.”   

As a record producer and songwriter, Göransson has worked with a wide range of artists including Haim, Rihanna, Travis Scott, Adele, and Donald Glover (aka Childish Gambino). A longtime collaborator of Glover’s, Göransson has been nominated for six Grammys with the artist, including two in 2019 for the Billboard Hot 100 Number One hit song “This Is America,” which became a cultural phenomenon that garnered world-wide acclaim.

Alongside Coogler, Göransson is a founding partner at Proximity Media: a company with a mission to create event-driven feature films, television, soundtracks, and podcasts that strive to bring audiences closer together through stories of oftentimes overlooked subject matters. 

ABOUT OPPENHEIMER

Written and directed by Christopher Nolan, Oppenheimer is an IMAX-shot epic thriller that thrusts audiences into the pulse-pounding paradox of the enigmatic man who must risk destroying the world in order to save it.

The film stars Cillian Murphy as J. Robert Oppenheimer and Golden Globe winner Emily Blunt as his wife, biologist and botanist Kitty Oppenheimer. Oscar winner Matt Damon portrays Leslie Groves, director of the Manhattan Project, and Oscar nominee Robert Downey, Jr. plays Lewis Strauss, a founding commissioner of the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission. 

Academy Award nominee Florence Pugh plays psychiatrist Jean Tatlock; Josh Hartnett plays pioneering American nuclear scientist Ernest Lawrence; Oscar winner Casey Affleck plays Boris Pash, chief of Army counter-intelligence at the Presidio in San Francisco; Oscar winner Rami Malek plays David Hill, an associate experimental physicist; and Oscar winning filmmaker and actor Kenneth Branagh plays Nobel Prize winning physicist Niels Bohr.  

Also starring are Benny Safdie (Licorice Pizza) as theoretical physicist Edward Teller, Dylan Arnold (Halloween films) as Frank Oppenheimer, Robert’s younger brother; Gustaf Skarsgård (Air) as Manhattan Project member Hans Bethe; David Krumholtz (The Ballad of Buster Scruggs) as Nobel Prize winning physicist Isidor Rabi; Matthew Modine (The Dark Knight Rises) as Vannevar Bush, head of the U.S. Office of Scientific Research and Development; David Dastmalchian (Dune: Part One) as William Borden, a zealous advocate for U.S. nuclear superiority; and Oscarnominee Tom Conti (The Dark Knight Rises) as Albert Einstein. 

The cast includes, as members of the Manhattan Project, Emmy nominee Michael Angarano (Haywire) as Robert Serber, Jack Quaid (Logan Lucky) as Richard Feynman, Josh Peck (Red Dawn) as Kenneth Bainbridge, Olivia Thirlby (Juno) as Lilli Hornig, Dane DeHaan (Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets) as Kenneth Nichols and Danny Deferrari (Shiva Baby) as Nobel Prize winner Enrico Fermi.

Alden Ehrenreich (Solo: A Star Wars Story) appears as a Senate Aide; Jefferson Hall (Tenet) plays Haakon Chevalier, a friend of Oppenheimer; Jason Clarke (Zero Dark Thirty) plays special counsel Roger Robb; James D’Arcy (Dunkirk) plays Patrick Blackett, Oppenheimer’s head tutor at Cambridge; and Tony Goldwyn (King Richard) plays Gordon Gray, a former Secretary of the Army who chaired the 1954 committee overseeing the security clearance hearing of Oppenheimer.  

The film is based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning book American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer by Kai Bird and the late Martin J. Sherwin. The film is produced by Oscar nominee Emma Thomas p.g.a. (Dunkirk, Inception), for Atlas Entertainment by Oscar nominee Charles Roven p.g.a. (The Dark Knight trilogy, American Hustle), and Christopher Nolan p.g.a.

Nolan’s films, including Tenet, Dunkirk, Interstellar, Inception and The Dark Knight trilogy, have earned more than $5 billion at the global box office and have been awarded 11 Oscars and 36 nominations, including two Best Picture nominations.

Oppenheimer is filmed in a combination of IMAX 65mm and 65mm large-format film photography including, for the first time ever, sections in IMAX black and white analog photography. 



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