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 Posted:   Nov 9, 2007 - 1:28 PM   
 By:   crazyunclerolo   (Member)

In the documentary footage on the new CHINATOWN release, Roman Polanski reveals that it was film composer Bronislau Kaper who first suggested that the film's score needed to be replaced! Kaper had befriended Polanski when the young director first came to Hollywood, showing him around and introducing him to many of the "old guard". Polanski affectionately refers to the composer as "Bronny"! The director invited Kaper to the sneak preview of CHINATOWN in Santa Barbara, and while Kaper thought the film was great, he hated the score. Everyone agreed with him, and producer Robert Evans decided on the spot to commission a new score, despite Polanski's protests that there simply wasn't enough time. Polanski had to leave Los Angeles immediately to direct an opera at the Spoleto Festival, so Evans was completely responsible for hiring Goldsmith and approving his work on the picture. Polanski first heard the score after it was already completed and fitted to the picture! Naturally, he was very happy with it.

 
 Posted:   Nov 9, 2007 - 2:46 PM   
 By:   Stefancos   (Member)

So Goldsmith never actually worked with Polanski?

 
 Posted:   Nov 9, 2007 - 3:46 PM   
 By:   DavidinBerkeley   (Member)

Very interesting. I'll have to rent that dvd.

 
 
 Posted:   Nov 9, 2007 - 4:58 PM   
 By:   Paul MacLean   (Member)

Polanski touches on this in his autobiography, "Roman by Polanski" (a great book by the way, if at times harrowing).

Polanski and Kaper met when Polanski first visited Hollywood, and the director speaks of how Kaper was venerated in Poland for having "made it" in Hollywood.

Unfortnately Polanski doesn't say much at all about Goldsmith's score in the book, only that Goldsmtih wrote the score "in record time." Polanski does say that Evans publicly blamed him for the problems with the initial score, having told an interviewer that Polanski hired "a rinky dink friend" to compose it.

 
 
 Posted:   Nov 9, 2007 - 5:10 PM   
 By:   Jake   (Member)

Jerry Goldsmith met with Roman Polanski only once for a spotting session, along with Bob Evans at the producer's house. He then left for Italy to direct LULU.

 
 Posted:   Nov 9, 2007 - 5:38 PM   
 By:   Sarge   (Member)

This anecdote only proves what I already knew... Kaper rules.

 
 
 Posted:   Nov 9, 2007 - 5:39 PM   
 By:   crazyunclerolo   (Member)

Leave it to a guy named Jake to uncover solid information on CHINATOWN!

 
 
 Posted:   Nov 10, 2007 - 4:55 PM   
 By:   Jake   (Member)

Well said! If there are any information tidbits you're looking regarding THE SAND PEBBLES, I'm also up to the task...

Cheers!

 
 Posted:   Nov 10, 2007 - 5:11 PM   
 By:   Wedge   (Member)

Jerry Goldsmith met with Roman Polanski only once for a spotting session, along with Bob Evans at the producer's house. He then left for Italy to direct LULU.

Jerry Goldsmith directed LULU?!? Wow!!


big grin

 
 
 Posted:   Nov 11, 2007 - 1:38 AM   
 By:   The Beserker   (Member)

Well said! If there are any information tidbits you're looking regarding THE SAND PEBBLES, I'm also up to the task...

C'mon, Jake, it's Chinatown, er, China.

 
 Posted:   Nov 11, 2007 - 4:39 AM   
 By:   Ray Faiola   (Member)

it was film composer Bronislau Kaper who first suggested that the film's score needed to be replaced!

Yeah, but has anyone ever cut a Kaper!?!big grin

 
 
 Posted:   Nov 12, 2007 - 1:05 AM   
 By:   manderley   (Member)

.....it was film composer Bronislau Kaper who first suggested that the film's score needed to be replaced!

Yeah, but has anyone ever cut a Kaper!?!.....



Reportedly, THE SALZBURG CONNECTION.

 
 Posted:   Nov 12, 2007 - 2:25 AM   
 By:   captain X   (Member)

May 28, 2006 - Rejected "Chinatown" score to be released next year - The cat is out of the bag. In response to our first newsletter of this past weekend, we have been flooded with emails.

Among the future releases, we will have a digital re-recording of the unused "Chinatown" score. It will be recorded in Prague under the baton of the composer. The score is ca 28 minutes long, and the CD MIGHT feature an audio interview with Phillip Lambro about his experiences working with Roman Polanski and Robert Evans on this picture. A release date has not been set yet.

***********************************************

Perseverance was supposedly going to release the rejected score for "Chinatown" but for whatever reason or reasons, the project has unfortunately been dismissed.

Perhaps not enough interest from the soundtrack community?

Personally, I would be very curious to listen to whatever music was originally composed for this excellent film.

Perhaps some Chinese groovy FUNK??? smile

It might have neen destiny for this great film to be composed by the great Jerry Goldsmith which led to yet another Oscar nomination for the maestro.

Whatever the case might have been... Jerry Goldsmith to the rescue, as always!

Lucky us!!

 
 Posted:   Mar 14, 2008 - 10:01 PM   
 By:   Lukas Kendall   (Member)


Hi Everyone,

Phillip Lambro emailed me and asked me to print the following, verbatim:

"I have never seen such inaccurate comments about the film Chinatown by people who were not there. To begin with Roman Polanski told me on many occasions that he thought the Chinatown script "was the biggest pile of crap I ever saw." According to Thelma, his secretary, she told me that Polanski fought with Evans and wanted to keep my score to the very last minute. Wake up; Chinatown lost a lot of money and Robert Evans lost a job he never should have had in the first place. My book is published and available CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE WORST KIND; read the chapter The Chinatown Syndrome if you want to know what actually took place. Polanski offered me his next film, but I refused as I did initially with Chinatown when I found out that Evans was the producer; but Polanski convinced me that he was in complete control. I never worked with Robert Evaans at all; I worked with Polanski; and at the end when I found out that Polanski wasn't in control, I never forgave him for lying to me; and to those Chinatown freaks who think it's the greatest film of all time, have you freaks ever seen the films of Akira Kurosawa, and Orson Welles? What the F is your frame of reference; if you have ever had one? Fortunately, I don't have to do film scores anymore; I've refused over a dozen times after Chinatown, in favor of my concert hall compositions which are heard from The Kennedy Center to last week in Algiers. A great film score is Leonard Bernstein's music to ON THE WATERFRONT and Alfred Newman's score to THE ROBE; those are celebrated scores."

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 14, 2008 - 10:13 PM   
 By:   JSWalsh   (Member)

"and to those Chinatown freaks who think it's the greatest film of all time, have you freaks ever seen the films of Akira Kurosawa, and Orson Welles?"

Yes. I've never seen a movie scored by Phillip Lambro, though.

I respect film music composers, even those whose music I don't like--or in this case, those whose music was used in movies so obscure I've never come across them in three decades of movie watching. And I appreciate Mr. Lambro's having a unique perspective on the CHINATOWN situation.

But if the movie is so awful, why is he so damned upset, decades later, about not having his work included in such a pile of crap?

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 14, 2008 - 10:16 PM   
 By:   Alex Klein   (Member)

Hate is never a good thing.

Alex

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 14, 2008 - 10:16 PM   
 By:   Suicide is imminent   (Member)

.

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 14, 2008 - 10:48 PM   
 By:   haineshisway   (Member)

I've read the chapter in Mr. Lambro's book and I've heard Mr. Lambro's score, which I've commented on several times in a positive light. But, I'm afraid, it's a case of "he said, she said" and Mr. Lambro has a very healthy ego and is very bitter (understandably) about the situation all these years later.

Chinatown is hardly a piece of crap - it's a great film in every way, and that includes Mr. Goldsmith's score. I have seen every Kurosawa film and every Welles film and Chinatown is certainly the equal of some of each filmmaker's output - I rank it right up there with Kurosawa's High and Low (they are both in my top twenty of all-time) and Welles' Touch Of Evil.

It doesn't really matter what Polanski may have said about Towne's script - however it got on the screen the script is a marvel of economy, great dialogue, and wonderful plotting. Add to that the consistently great performances of the cast and you've got a film that has endured as a classic these many years later.

And while Mr. Lambro may have been there, so many of his statements in his book are filled with contradictions and other people involved in the film have other stories - and they were there, too.

If Mr. Lambro was offered The Tenant, why is the score by Philippe Sarde (and a fine score it is)?

I have the recent release of Mr. Lambro's various film scores and I've enjoyed it, just as I've enjoyed some of his unused score to Chinatown. But, having synched his score to several of the sequences in the film where it belongs (the spotting for the two scores is very similar), the score just doesn't work as well as Mr. Goldsmith's. It's very different, of course, but it does not evoke the emotion that Mr. Goldsmith's does, at least IMO. That doesn't mean it's bad, because it isn't, it just means that it doesn't work with what's on the screen as well as the score that replaced it.

I've been in the movie and TV and recording business since 1970 - I've seen great scores thrown out of films that have replaced them with much inferior work and I've seen lousy scores thrown out of films that have replaced them with superior work - in all cases, major composers being involved.
It happens.

Again, I like Mr. Lambro's work, but the bitterness all these years later is off-putting, one-sided, and unnecessary. I keep hoping that someday we'll have a release of Lambro's Chinatown - I think people will find it interesting listening.

And it's probably not a good idea to call potential fans of one's work "freaks". Okay to disagree with them, surely, but to just generalize an entire message board like that isn't fair, IMO.

I think I'll go listen to Lambro's Chinatown right now.

 
 Posted:   Mar 14, 2008 - 10:55 PM   
 By:   Steve Johnson   (Member)

Troubled Waters under a Bridge 34 years past.

 
 Posted:   Mar 14, 2008 - 11:00 PM   
 By:   Sarge   (Member)

Wow...

Having seen my own work degraded or chucked out the window by forces beyond my control (sometimes for reasons which didn't even make sense), I feel tremendous sympathy for Mr. Lambro.

I haven't heard his score, so I can't comment on it. But I love Jerry's score, and think it suits the film perfectly.

As for the film itself, I think it's a GOOD movie with a GREAT ending. That's what makes it so memorable.

As with Alex North, Bernard Herrmann, Gabriel Yared and many others, I'm sorry to see any composer get burned, and I hope to hear Lambro's score someday.

"Forget it, Mr. Lambro... it's Chinatown."

 
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