Posted on Tuesday, December 11th, 2012 by Russ Fischer
You might consider it a given that Clint Mansell would score Noah for Darren Aronofsky, as the two have a long-established working partnership that is beginning to resemble the creative marriage between Joel and Ethan Coen and Carter Burwell. In fact, “marriage” is exactly the word Aronofsky uses to describe his work with both Mansell and frequent cinematographer Matty Libatique.
During a filmmaking master class given at the Marrakech Film Festival, Aronofsky recently talked about his entire career, and confirmed that Mansell will score Noah. In doing so he also talked about the nature of his work with the composer, and the quotes are not the boilerplate “we work well together” stuff we hear from most directors.
The Playlist had a reporter at the master class, and posts that confirmation of the team-up for Noah was placed in the middle of discourse from Aronofsky that gave some insight into his general working relationship with Mansell.
That’s another bad marriage. We’re about to start [on ‘Noah’] and I’m actually getting texts right now and I know it’s from [Mansell], complaining about something. But he’s a genius too and he cares, he puts his heart and soul and his love into everything. And he’s unique – different from everyone else out there working. He’s able to boil down the thematic of a film into a melody, into two or three notes. He captures the whole essence of a film in two or three notes.
“Anoter bad marriage” refers to previous comments he made that day about working with Matty Libatique:
It’s like a marriage – good at times, mostly bad. We did get a divorce, just before “The Wrestler,” and I got remarried… but then we got back together after that. He’s a real artist and he really cares and that’s hard to find. We just finished shooting “Noah” two weeks ago and I’m really glad I don’t have to see him again for a few months. But then when I see him again I know I’ll love him, because we’re great friends. It’s just that we’re both always fighting to get as much as we can, and not everyone’s always happy with what we get, because there’s always limitations on filmmaking.
On “Noah” he just had incredible technical abilities, and they type of things we pulled off — I think there’s very few people on the planet that could have done what he can do. There were nights when we had six huge cranes — the type you build skyrises with — holding up giant rigs of lights and rain rigs and the complication and sophistication of the equipment is just so technically difficult that very few people could have done that. So there are those skills, but he also has the tenderness and sensitivity to look at a performance and see how he can help it.
I’m a believer in the idea that conflict can greatly contribute to creativity. There are times when it’s nice when everyone seems to be on exactly the same page, but the conflict — if between people who can articulate what they want — often leads to more communication about a project, and creative leaps that might not take place otherwise. And while these descriptions from the director don’t sound like the nicest situations ever, who needs nice? His words are framed with respect, and the results (so far) speak for themselves.